How to Paint a Sparkle Texture Ceiling

Julie Hampton

Update a room by giving a sparkle texture ceiling a brand-new look. Outdated popcorn ceilings often have a bit of sparkle added to the texture and scream the 1970s. Painting over the texture can refresh the room with color and also provide a clean, crisp appearance to a room.

Painting a ceiling is more strenuous than painting walls due to the height factor, however, disguising a sparkle ceiling is often worth it.

  1. Remove all furniture and accessories from the room. Take down pictures and wall decor. Wrap blinds, curtains and drapery in plastic if items cannot easily be removed. Place drop cloths on the floor. Make sure the entire floor is covered. Any remaining furniture should be covered in plastic or drop cloths for paint-spill protection.

  2. Decide if you will be using a ladder or small scaffolding to paint the ceiling—both are viable options. Use small scaffolding for increased comfort and a level surface under your feet. Remove any light fixtures or fans if they are in the way. Cover the fixtures with plastic to avoid getting stained with paint. Wrap the light and fan switches with tape to avoid accidentally turning them on while painting---the heat from the light bulbs can melt plastic, and a turning fan can seriously injure a painter.

  3. Vacuum the ceilings to remove dirt and grime. Avoid scrubbing harshly, as the texture will fall off. Make sure to remove cobwebs in the corners. Use a damp cloth if a large amount of dirt is present—gently wipe off excess dirt without damaging the ceiling.

  4. Use a water-based primer, and apply it with a thick nap roller. Roll the entire ceiling once, and get as close to the edge as possible, leaving about a ½-inch perimeter. Remember that for both paint and primer, a quart of paint covers 100 square feet and a gallon covers 400 square feet. Allow the primer to dry (it dries very quickly and can be painted over in a few hours). Wash out the roller in the sink, and place outside or in a warm area to dry. Do not paint the edge or perimeter of the ceiling; the small amount of latex paint will seal off this area well.

  5. Apply a flat latex paint to the ceiling. Use the roller and apply the paint to the ceiling again. Roll evenly, and do not apply a great amount of pressure. Apply a second coat if large amounts of the texture remain unpainted. Stipple any unpainted areas by dipping an old brush into paint and touching up uneven areas.

  6. Take an angled brush and dip the tip into the latex paint. Slowly glide the brush along the perimeter—this will be difficult to do because of the texture in the corner. Add small amounts of paint to avoid drips.

  7. Look at the ceiling from different angles, and ensure that you have covered the old ceiling color. Label the paint so it can be properly identified later. Clean rollers and all paint supplies in a sink using soap and water. Carefully remove all ladders and paint equipment. Fold drop cloths carefully. Remove all plastic and return all furniture and accessories to the room.