Can You Color Wash a Wall?

Here’s a look at what you’ll need to color wash your walls the right way.

Blue-gray color washed walls.

Color Washing Walls: What You Need to Know

A technique known as color washing or glaze painting can bring an inviting look and feel to any room.

Drawing from Tuscan roots and sometimes referred to as “faux painting,” color washed walls exude warmth and charm throughout any space.

Supplies for Color Washing

Color washing is achieved by sponge painting or brushing a latex glaze onto walls. A paintbrush will provide a more textured look, while sponges or soft rags will create a softer, more diffused appearance.

Selecting the Colors & Products

The quality of paint, and the just-right color choice, are both important ingredients for any color wash project.

For the basecoat:

  • Select two shades from the same color strip; this is the best way to combine hues that complement one another.
  • Be sure to select eggshell or a higher sheen for the basecoat.

For the product:

For the glaze:
Benjamin Moore does not manufacture a latex glaze. Once you identify a glaze you will use from another manufacturer, consider the Benjamin Moore products on this page to help complete your color wash painting job. And check out our painting tools, which can be ordered online and picked up at a locally owned Benjamin Moore® store.

More Color Wash Painting Techniques

  • For different visual effects, vary your wiping motions as you apply the glaze.
  • To achieve the look of an aged patina, apply a lighter glaze over a darker glaze.
  • For a look with richer color depth, glaze walls with different paint colors: a base color, a glaze darker than your base paint color, and a third deeper glaze color.
  • You can finish your color washed wall with a premium quality top coat like Stays Clear® to protect the results over time, but this is optional.

Have More Questions?

Visit your local Benjamin Moore store or contact Customer Support.
Regal® Select Interior Paint

Regal® Select Interior Paint

Go with a premium-quality paint with excellent hide and coverage for a uniform finish every time.

Fresh Start® High-Hiding All Purpose Primer

Fresh Start® High-Hiding All Purpose Primer

Use a top-quality primer that offers superior adhesion and maximum hide for a smooth finish.