Drywall Texture Types Perfect For Any Home

The type of wall you choose can really change the way your space is looked at. After all, this is the bones and the background of your entire room, so making sure it suits you is crucial to your overall design.

Drywall Texture Types View in gallery

If you choose drywall, you’ve only just begun making decisions. There is still such a long way to go in finding out the type of wall that you want. You still need to choose the drywall texture of your wall.

Should I Remove Old Drywall Textures?

Should I Remove Old Drywall TexturesView in gallery

If you are trying to find out if you should remove old drywall textures before adding another, then you should probably consult a professional. But if the texture was applied pre-1980, have it tested first.

If it was applied after, then you can rest easy knowing that it is safe to disturb. However, you can always apply a thin layer of drywall mud or plaster to the wall and use it as a base instead of scraping away the drywall texture.

This is a much easier way to go about it and it can turn out the same either way. Another alternative is tearing down the drywall and applying new drywall, which gives a chance to check behind it as well.

Types Of Drywall Textures

Drywall is the most popular type of wall and ceiling in America, and in many other countries. It is closely related to plaster which is an older, moldable version of drywall. But did you know that drywall can have a molded layer too?

Sante Fe

Santa Fe Drywall TextureView in gallery

Sante Fe gets its name from its origins. It is a low-profile drywall texture found primarily in the southwest states of The United States. It is created by skimming a thin flat layer of drywall mud over the drywall surface.

The trick is not allowing the drywall to cover the entire surface. There will be bald spots and slightly higher spots. But overall, it will be very close to the wall and end up looking smooth with a few rougher spots. 


The drywall comb texture is used to create lines all over the wall. The lines overlap and swirl around each other, creating a comb-like texture. They are usually sunk deeper so that there are definite grooves in the texture.

While the technique can be used to create many different types of patterns, it is most often used to create arches that stack on top of each other, alternating each line. This is often the classic “comb texture” on drywall.

Hawk And Trowel

Hawk And TrowelView in gallery

Hawk and trowel is a busy pattern for those who want something more intricate. The intricacy primarily depends on exactly how many layers you apply and how thick the layers are. So it is highly customizable.

Hawk and trowel texture is applied in layers and ends up looking like water flowing over the surface. It gets its name from the fact that it uses both a hawk and a trowel to create the texture over the drywall.


PopcornView in gallery

Popcorn ceilings were extremely popular in the 60s and 70s. But since then, it has been found out that those ceilings contain asbestos, which can be very dangerous.  They have become less popular since then.

It’s fairly easy to apply. You mix the popcorn mix with water and spray it on your ceiling. Although there are alternatives to the original asbestos, this type f ceiling si very unpopular as it is linked with that fiasco. 

Orange Peel

Orange Peel drywallView in gallery

Orange peel drywall looks like an orange peel. It is bumpy, yet smooth in texture and is common for those who once liked popcorn ceilings but aren’t crazy about the association now. Orange peel is applied the same way.

The drywall compound is actually sprayed onto the wall and this time, since it doesn’t have the rough particles of vermiculite or polystyrene, it is smooth on the surface. Many people prefer this look to popcorn anyway. 

Skip Trowel

Skip TrowelView in gallery

The skip trowel is a type of drywall texture that was inspired by a plaster wall technique. This type of wall is not a good first-time drywall texture artist’s choice but if you have experience, it can be one of the most fulfilling. 

It starts with a large curved knife that you use to spread very thin layers of drywall mud onto the wall with. Then you skip across the surface to create a unique texture in the mud. Lastly, go over it lightly with a clean trowel. 


KnockdownView in gallery

If you have much knowledge of drywall at all, you are familiar with knockdown drywall. This type of texture is achieved in a few different ways, but the most common involves using the orange peel technique.

This time, after you apply the texture, then you flatten the tops instead of letting them dry. You do this by lightly going over them with a knockdown knife before the dry. It is a simple way to get a different look.

Spanish Lace

As far as drywall texture types go, Spanish lace is one of the rarest. It is a technique that is vague at best because there are so many ways to achieve it. You can use the knockdown technique or the spray technique. 

Either way, the last step is going to be carving tiny little designs that look like Spanish lace into the drywall mud. You can wait a few minutes so that the design is clean or do it right away for a murkier look.


Rosebud is very similar to Spanish lace but with a less detailed finishView in gallery

Rosebud is very similar to Spanish lace but with a less detailed finish. However, the rosebud texture is easier to apply because it doesn’t need the finishing work that Spanish lace does, which takes a steady hand.

There is a brush known as a rosebud stomping brush. When you use this brush it does all the work for you. So all you have to do is stomp away in the correct areas and you will see the pattern appear before you. 

Spanish Knife

Yes, Spanish knife is similar to Spanish lace due to the fact that you have to pay attention to the details to achieve the look. You can create your own techniques but there is a most common way to do so.

If you want the simplest yet rarest type of drywall texture, this may be it. You apply the mud smooth letting the edges of the knife leave peaks so that you can see how it overlapped. The result is stunning.

Sand Swirl

Sand SwirlView in gallery

Sand swirl is a special type of drywall texture that you don’t see as often as you should. It is most commonly achieved by using perlite, which is primer and sand mixed together to give this unique texture.

You can use the technique by taking a standard paintbrush and making huge swirls, almost at a complete arch in front of you. Keep doing this in any pattern that you like to get your own unique sand swirl pattern. 

Slap Brush

Slap BrushView in gallery

The slap brush texture is a great drywall texture for beginners because it covers mistakes, it looks good, and it is easy to apply. All you need is a slap brush that is used to apply this type of texture on drywall.

All you really need to do is slap mud onto the wall. Yep. Keep doing it until you have it all covered. Try not to get too much mud on your brush until you know how much you need. Start small and work from there.

Slap Brush Knockdown

Slap Brush KnockdownView in gallery

The slap brush knockdown texture is just like the slap brush texture only with the knockdown texture applied after it. You simply use the slap brush technique and after you use it, slide over it with the knockdown knife.

This two-in-one technique is one of the most popular among DIY-ers. But it is important that you wait about fifteen minutes before knocking down or you will leave marks in the mud from the edges of the knife. 

Plaster Feature: Venetian Plaster Finish

This special technique is used much more often for plaster than drywall. But if you are a drywall expert you can always give it a try. It’s called Venetian plaster and it is made by mixing plaster with marble dust.

Yes, marble dust! Not an extremely affordable wall texture type but it is a unique one. You apply the plaster in thin layers with a spatula and have a high-dimensional finish added by the marble dust of a different tone. 

Choosing The Drywall Texture For You

Choosing The Drywall Texture For YouView in gallery

After being introduced to so many different types of drywall textures, it may be difficult to find out which one is right for you. But it is possible. You can start by deciding if you are DIY-ing your texture or not.

Some textures require special equipment while others turn out so much better if a professional is applying it. After you find out if you will hire a professional, then you can decide on how busy you want it to be.

Finally, it’s time to pick out the exact texture. It’s really all about the final result. Today, you don’t have to worry about asbestos or other dangers, so you can choose the one that you fall in love with and stick to it!