How to Paint & Distress Interior Brick

Updated April 17, 2017

Typically, when a person is painting interior brick wall, it is because it is already chipped, peeled or scratched. However, a "distressed look" is a very popular technique used in interior painting these days. Painting and distressing your interior brick wall will give it a rustic and aged look. It is a great way to create the illusion that a brick wall is much older than it actually is. It's also a fun technique to use because you can be a little sloppy when you're applying your paint and it won't matter since that's the look you're going for anyway.

Clean the brick wall before you paint. Remove all dust and dirt from the bricks so it does not get clumped in the paint.

Apply 100 per cent universal acrylic primer to the wall. Follow the instructions on the primer can with regard to number of coats and drying time. Use the paint roller first, working from the top down, to cover the majority of the wall. Then use your paint brush to fill in the mortar and any other areas the roller may have missed.

Apply the paint after the primer has dried. Apply the paint the same way you applied the primer, using the roller first and then the brush to fill in gaps. The number of coats is up to you. Let the paint dry overnight before distressing it.

Use steel wool and sandpaper to begin scratching and chipping away at the paint. Rub vigorously and sporadically in random areas without putting any thought into what you're doing. This will make it look more natural.

Splash paint stripper onto the wall and leave it there for the amount of time suggested on the can. Use a cloth rag to rub it off. This will pull up areas of paint and create a natural worn look.

Things You'll Need

  • 100 per cent universal acrylic primer
  • 100 per cent universal acrylic paint
  • Paint brush
  • Paint roller
  • Rolling pan
  • Paint stripper
  • Cloth rag
  • Steel wool
  • Sandpaper
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About the Author

Jason Jensen began his professional freelance writing career in 2010. He is an ACT-certified personal trainer and longtime vegetarian with an enthusiasm for fitness and nutrition. Jensen has also worked as a musician, freelance photographer, audio engineer and Web designer.