Limewash or Mineral Paints:
A comparison of Lime wash and Mineral Paints to help you choose your exterior coating

Choosing the right exterior coatings for your home or property is an important decision to make. Not only is it something that can protect your property, but it is also something that can be quite a costly affair. However, if the right exterior finish is chosen then this can improve not only the aesthetics of the property, but also increase house value.

In particular, Lime render can be a difficult material to cover efficiently .This traditional and eco-friendly material requires a breathable coating otherwise the property can have endless problems. Lime render can be covered with two options – Lime wash (the traditional white-wash) or Mineral Paints. Therefore, we have put together this easy to understand grid so you can effectively compare and choose which exterior finish is right for you and your project.

Lime wash and Mineral Paint Exterior Coating Comparison


What is it?

Suitable For...

Not Suitable For...


A low-cost paint made from slacked lime. Limewash is a traditional building coating and is often seen on traditional or historical properties.

  • Natural Stone

  • Terracotta

  • Brick

  • Cob

  • Traditional Masonry

  • Metal

  • Wood

  • Plastic

Mineral Paints

A mineral paint is a masonry coating that creates a bond with the underlying mineral substrate. They are made from natural silicate active materials.

  • Natural Stone

  • Concrete

  • Earthen Plaster

  • Lime Render/Plaster

  • Masonry

  • Pebbledash Render

  • Metal

  • Wood

  • Plastic




Common Problems


If applied onto lime render, limewash will need recoating every few years.

  • Sourced from natural materials

  • Biodegradable

  • Non Toxic

  • Need to recoat every few years

Mineral Paints

Mineral paints have an extraordinarily durable and long lasting finish. Some buildings in Europe have lasted over 100 years.

  • Sourced from sustainable materials

  • Free of Solvents

  • No VOC’s

  • Carbon Neutral

  • Non Toxic

  • When painting, ensure a constant wet edge is maintained as going over the mineral paints can create patchy colour.



Colour Option



Breathable and water-vapour permeable

Traditional White. Can be tinted to many natural colours by tinting with natural oxides. However, to maintain the colour and coating Lime wash will need redecorating every few years.

Limewash is best applied by using a flat brush or masonry paintbrush. Stir the limewash well before and during application. Apply by working the wash well into the surface. The limewash should be applied in several thin coats. Avoid runs or drips running down the face of the work.

Mineral Paints

Breathable and water-vapour permeable. Mineral Paints are as breathable as Lime

wash but behaves more like a masonry paint.

Beeck Mineral Paints come in a range of 2-300 colours. However, here at Holman Specialist paints we are also able to tint this product to match your exact specification from any other colour chart or sample. Beeck Mineral paints are UV Resistant and the colour will not fade with time.

Although it can be applied by both professionals and home owners, we highly recommend trying a test area to get the technique right and avoid patchy areas.

Applied by roller, brush or airless spraying method. Apply to self-contained area with a thin coating. No overlapping and uniformly in one continuous pass as a cross coat. Avoid Roller edges and over coating areas that are already drying.


Building Movement


Historic Considerations


Accommodates general movement of buildings. Less prone to cracking.

Closer in strength to most types of stone and brick.

  • Traditional building technique.

  • Doesn’t exacerbate deterioration

  • Commonly used for conservation

Mineral Paints

The Silicification process means that the mineral paints form an inseparable bond between coating and the surface. This means they do not flake and move with the general movement of buildings.

The accommodating nature of this material is suitable on critical substrates of listed buildings and newer buildings alike. Strong and durable finish.

  • Can be used on traditional building materials.

  • Aesthetic sympathetic to historical properties.

  • Suitable for restoration and conservation

Here at Holman’s Specialist Masonry Paints were here to help you make the right decision, so if you’d like to know any more about any of our products or have any questions please feel welcome to give our friendly team a call on: 01793 511537.


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