Lime Earth Paints Guidance Notes

Lime Earth Paints are suitable for interior and exterior walls, for use on lime plaster, gypsum plaster, brick, renders & stone surfaces. Also on lining paper, wood & previously painted surfaces.

The porosity of the lime allows moisture to evaporate out of walls rapidly, making it ideal for areas where there is moisture for example bathrooms. Its alkalinity also naturally inhibits mould growth.

Coverage varies from 6 - 8 m2/ltr per coat, depending on texture and absorbency of substrate. Lime Earth Paint can cover with just one coat although further coats may be required particularly outside to maintain opacity when wet.


Lime Earth Paint is a combination of hydraulic and non-hydraulic lime and, like a render, will set hard when mixed together. The two parts therefore have to kept separate until needed. Carry out preparation before mixing as once mixed together, this paint will start to set.

Prepare uneven and crumbling surfaces with lime plaster or mortar, surfaces should be free of flaking paint, dust & loose paper.
Dampen any porous surfaces with water. For damp walls, prime with pure lime-wash & allow a few days before applying Lime Earth paints. Allow a minimum of two weeks for newly lime-plastered walls to dry, & one week for gypsum plastered walls, before applying Lime Earth paint.
To begin with assess the substrates within the room. If there are a number of different surfaces to be painted, such as some bare plaster, old paintwork and filler, it would be advisable to prime first using either Natural Off-white Lime Earth Paint, if it needs to be breathable or acrylic primer.

The paint requires a minimum drying temperature of 5 degrees Celsius and an overnight temperature above freezing.

The following notes are for guidance only and are to be read in conjunction with information supplied on the back of the tub. Application tecniques will vary depending upon the nature of the individual substrate and the finish required.

The first thing to be aware of when using lime based products is that lime is caustic and therefore damaging to eyes and skin so goggles and gloves are essential.

Mix any settled lime putty back into a smooth lime-wash in the tub before carefully adding contents of colour-bag, a little at a time, mixing the two together. Set aside for 20 minutes to allow polymerisation and pigment slaking to occur.
Other essential pieces of equipment are a whisk and fitch for mixing (do not attempt to mix the paint together with a stick unless you want very rustic looking paintwork!). For an even colour the powder needs to be thoroughly mixed with no lumps of pigment. You may find when you come to apply the paint small bits of pigment ‘break out’ on the surface but these can be blended or softened in with the brush as you go. Some people prefer a more uneven and rustic look and therefore deliberately leave lumps of powder in the paint.

Apply evenly onto the wall. Avoid cutting in around edges & always paint an entire wall in one go to avoid join marks.
To cover large areas Lime Earth Paint can be applied by roller then layed off with a good soft emulsion brush to really do it justice. Brush application is the preferred method.

If the walls are bare plaster no primer is necessary but the plaster needs to be thoroughly soaked before the Lime Earth Paint is applied. This will reduce absorbency making painting easier during application by keeping the leading edge wet, this also helps the lime carbonate (harden) more fully.

Each wall has to be treated as a whole and painted in one continuous operation i.e. no cutting in around the edge and then in filling. It is difficult to join into an area of paint that has already dried so try and keep your leading edge wet. A plant spray is a useful tool for this. The way to apply Lime Earth Paint with a brush is to ‘lay it on’ vigorously (brush it out) and then ‘lay it off’ very gently (soften out the brush lines) in a cross hatching action to brush it out in all directions. This will blend wet paint into drying paint. Do not apply the paint too thickly, as it will craze as it dries. As Lime Earth Paint is translucent when it is first applied, and much darker in colour, it can look quite alarming. But don’t panic ; wait until it is thoroughly dry before assessing your handiwork. As the paint dries and goes through the carbonating process it develops opacity and the lovely chalky bloom of the lime comes through. If you are painting a very large room you will find the paint begins to thicken in the tub after a few hours. To get the paint back to a more usable consistency mix in a little water.

Allow Lime Earth Paint to dry for 24 hours before deciding whether a second coat of paint is needed. This will depend on the colour you are using, the substrate you are painting and how well you have applied it (it is quite easy to miss little areas). Before repainting you need to thoroughly wet the first coat with water. It is not possible to touch up small areas invisibly. If you have only one small area of one wall that needs re coating you need to re coat the whole wall.

Health & Safety: Safe usage infromation is provided with the product, COSHH safety data sheet can be supplied for each colour from Lime Earth Conservation Ltd upon request.
Please ensure you follow the health & safety information when using Lime Earth Paint products before handling or usage.

Disclaimer: Any information, whether verbal or in writing, is for guidance only and is given in good faith but without warranty, since skill of application and site conditions are beyond our control. We accept no liability for the performance of the products arising out of such use, beyond the value of the goods delivered by us. This does not affect your statutory rights.