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    Difference Between Plastering and Skimming 

    Posted on July 8, 2011 by admin Last updated on: July 8, 2011

    Plastering vs Skimming

    With the modern development, much consideration is given for the quality of a product. The quality of a product is identified through many variables, such as durability, appearance, functions etc. In a building also, the quality is a major requirement in modern days. When we talk about the appearance of a building, the plastering and skimming is very important. The importance of skimming and plastering has evolved because that they help to bring about a quality product with better appearance. This article is about the features of plastering and skimming, together with the analysis of the differences and similarities.


    The purposes of plastering are to give a wear resistance to the wall, increase fire resistance of the building elements, and to give a good appearance to the wall. Greater skill is required to do a better quality plastering. Two coat applications are preferred on clay tiles rough masonry and on porous bricks. There are three types of plasters namely, lime plasters, cement plasters and gypsum plasters. Lime plaster consists of Calcium Hydroxide (Lime) and sand. Gypsum plaster is made by adding water to Calcium Sulphate (Plaster of Paris). Cement plaster is made with cement, sand, water and a suitable plaster. Cement plaster is usually applied on the masonry walls, where the gypsum or lime plaster is then added again.


    Skim coating is a name for a plastering technique. Out of many skim mixtures, the widely used mixture is made up of lime putty and sugar sand. Skimming is a thin coat of plastering layer applied to the existing plaster to upgrade the surface. Skimming is very difficult to do; it needs a greater skill to make the surface smooth. The thickness of the skimming layer is decided by the requirement of the client, and it can be varied from a thin layer to a thick layer. The white layer of lime applied on the rough cement plaster is called a skim coat. People use different techniques to level the surface, depending on their level of expertise. On top of the skim coating, a paint coat is applied to make the surface more attractive.

    Similarities and Differences between Skimming and Plastering

    – Skimming is a plastering technique, which can be said as a subset of plastering.

    – Both are applied to decorate, and to increase the durability of the element.

    – Skimming is also done as an upgrading technique in old buildings, but the plastering is done in new buildings.

    – Surface of the plaster is rough, but the surface of the skim is very smooth and neat

    – The surface colour of the plaster is slight grayish, but in skimming, it is generally white or brown, if preferred.


    Plastering and skimming, are both done in new buildings, but if anyone needs, the walls can be left bare without the plaster. The reader must keep in mind that the skimming is not a separate coating technique or coating method; it’s yet another subset of plastering. Skimming is a step in the process of plastering.

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    UNREAD_POST Thu Jun 18, 2015 12:30 am


    NOW you tell us about the fast stirring, Sunflower, gee that would have been a big help before this – us wondering how ours were going rock hard in two minutes flat, and you nonchalantly getting on with your pouring in no hurry ;) Those blue green cones are amazingly beautiful.