Get That Perfect Finish: The Best Methods for How to Finish Drywall


If you’re planning a home renovation or construction project, finishing drywall is likely to be on your to-do list. While drywall is an excellent material for creating walls and ceilings, it can be a challenge to finish properly. Poorly finished drywall can result in a less-than-perfect look for your walls and ceilings, and can even affect the overall quality and value of your home.

In this blog post, we’ll walk you through the essential steps to finish drywall like a pro. From taping and mudding to sanding and texturing, we’ll cover everything you need to know to achieve a smooth, flawless finish. Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or a professional contractor, our tips and techniques will help you achieve professional-looking results with ease.

So, if you’re ready to transform your walls and ceilings, let’s dive in and learn how to finish drywall like a pro!

What Exactly is finish drywall?

Drywall, also known as gypsum board or wallboard, is a common building material used to create walls and ceilings. Finish drywall refers to the process of preparing and smoothing the surface of the drywall after it has been installed. This includes covering the joints and screw holes with joint compound, taping and mudding the seams, and sanding the surface to create a smooth finish. Finish drywall can also include adding texture to the surface or applying a decorative finish such as paint or wallpaper. Properly finishing drywall is essential for achieving a professional-looking and durable surface that is ready for further decorating.

Why should you finish drywall?

  1. Aesthetics: Unfinished drywall can have visible seams, screws, and other imperfections that can create an unattractive and unfinished look. Finishing drywall ensures that the surface is smooth and free of imperfections, resulting in a professional-looking and polished appearance.
  2. Durability: Unfinished drywall is more vulnerable to damage, moisture, and wear and tear, which can lead to cracks, holes, and other damage. Finishing drywall creates a durable and protective surface that is resistant to damage and moisture.
  3. Energy Efficiency: Unfinished drywall can have air leaks, which can reduce the energy efficiency of your home. Finishing drywall can help seal any air leaks, resulting in a more energy-efficient home.

Overall, finishing drywall is essential for creating a durable, polished, and energy-efficient surface that is ready for further decorating. It can also add value to your home and improve its overall appearance.

How To Finish Drywall Overview

First and foremost, let’s talk about materials. Joint compound is a must-have for finishing drywall. It’s easy to apply, dries quickly, and can be sanded down to create a smooth surface. Using a high-quality joint compound like the ones from USG or Sheetrock, as they provide a strong and durable finish.

When it comes to taping and mudding, using fiberglass mesh tape instead of paper tape. Fiberglass mesh tape is stronger, easier to work with, and less likely to bubble or wrinkle. Plus, it won’t tear like paper tape can.

Now, let’s talk about sanding. Sanding can be the most time-consuming part of finishing drywall, but it’s crucial for achieving a smooth finish. Using a sanding block or a sanding sponge to avoid creating waves or grooves in the surface. And don’t forget to wear a dust mask to protect yourself from inhaling drywall dust.

Lastly, if you want to add some extra pizzazz to your finished drywall, you can try adding a texture. Using an epoxy resin to create a unique, one-of-a-kind design. Epoxy resin is easy to work with and can be customized with a variety of pigments, glitter, or other decorative elements. Plus, it creates a durable and long-lasting finish that is easy to clean and maintain.

In conclusion, finishing drywall is a must-do for any home renovation project. With the right materials and techniques, you can achieve a smooth, polished, and professional-looking surface that will last for years to come. So, go ahead and give it a try – you won’t be disappointed!

How To Finish Drywall – Methods and Ingredients in Comparison

  1. Joint compound method: This is the most common method for finishing drywall. It involves using joint compound to fill in the gaps between sheets of drywall, then sanding the surface to create a smooth finish. The key ingredients for this method are joint compound, drywall tape, and sandpaper.
  2. Epoxy resin method: This method involves applying a layer of epoxy resin to the surface of the drywall. The resin is mixed with a hardener and then applied with a roller or brush. Once it dries, the surface can be sanded and painted. The key ingredients for this method are epoxy resin, hardener, and paint.
  3. Plaster method: This method involves using a plaster mixture to create a smooth surface on the drywall. The plaster is applied in several thin layers, then sanded down to create a smooth finish. The key ingredients for this method are plaster, joint compound, and sandpaper.
  4. Venetian plaster method: This method involves using a special type of plaster called Venetian plaster to create a textured, decorative finish. The plaster is applied in several layers, then polished to create a shiny, marble-like finish. The key ingredients for this method are Venetian plaster, trowel, and polishing tools.
MethodKey IngredientsMaterials
Joint compoundJoint compound, drywall tape, sandpaperTaping knife, drywall saw, sanding block
Epoxy resinEpoxy resin, hardener, paintRoller, brush, paint, sandpaper
PlasterPlaster, joint compound, sandpaperTrowel, mixing bucket, sanding block
Venetian plasterVenetian plaster, trowel, polishing toolsPolishing tools, mixing bucket, trowel

When choosing a method for finishing drywall, it’s important to consider the level of difficulty, time required, and desired outcome. Each method has its pros and cons, so it’s worth doing some research to find the one that’s right for your specific project.

Equipment for Finishing Drywall

Taping knifeUsed to apply joint compound to drywall joints and seams
Mud panUsed to hold joint compound while working
Drywall sawUsed to cut drywall to size
Sanding block/spongeUsed to sand joint compound and drywall surface
Drywall sandpaperUsed to sand joint compound and drywall surface
Power sanderOptional tool used to speed up sanding process
Drywall hoistOptional equipment used to hold and lift drywall into place
Drill with mixing attachmentUsed to mix joint compound and other materials
Fiberglass mesh tapeUsed to reinforce joints and seams
Joint compoundKey material used to fill gaps and joints in drywall
Epoxy resinOptional material used to create unique textures and designs
PaintOptional material used to add color and protect the surface

Having these tools and equipment on hand will make the process of finishing drywall much easier and more efficient. It’s important to invest in high-quality tools that will last, as they will be the foundation for a smooth and professional-looking finish.

Step by Step Instruction on How to Finish Drywall

  1. Prep the area: Remove any dust, debris, and loose particles from the drywall surface with a clean, dry cloth. Make sure the surface is completely clean and free of any obstructions.
  2. Apply drywall tape: Place self-adhesive drywall tape over the joints between each drywall panel. Press the tape down with your fingers to make sure it sticks to the surface.
  3. Apply joint compound: Using a taping knife, apply a layer of joint compound over the drywall tape, spreading it evenly across the joint. Make sure to apply enough compound to fill the joint completely, but not so much that it becomes uneven.
  4. Apply additional coats: Allow the first coat of joint compound to dry completely. Then, apply a second coat of joint compound over the first coat. Use a wider taping knife to spread the compound over a larger area, making sure to blend it with the surrounding surface.
  5. Sand the surface: Once the joint compound is completely dry, use a sanding block or sponge to smooth out any rough or uneven areas. Sand in a circular motion, moving from the center of the joint outwards. Repeat this process for each additional coat of joint compound that you apply.
  6. Apply finishing coat: Apply a final thin coat of joint compound over the entire surface, making sure to feather the edges to blend it with the surrounding surface. Allow it to dry completely.
  7. Sand the surface again: Once the final coat of joint compound is dry, sand the entire surface again, making sure it is completely smooth and even.
  8. Prime and paint: After the surface is completely sanded and smooth, prime and paint the surface with your desired color.

With these steps, you can achieve a professional-looking finish for your drywall project using the joint compound method. It’s important to take your time and follow each step carefully to ensure the best results.


Do I need to use joint compound to finish drywall?

Yes, joint compound is an essential material used to fill in gaps and joints between drywall panels. It is used to create a smooth surface and prevent cracking and other damage.

Can I use epoxy resin to finish drywall?

Yes, epoxy resin can be used to create unique textures and designs on a drywall surface. However, it is not typically used as the primary material for finishing drywall, and should only be used in conjunction with joint compound.

Can I paint the drywall without priming it first?

It’s not recommended to skip the priming step before painting. Priming helps to create a smooth surface for the paint to adhere to and provides a base coat that will help the paint color look more vibrant. Skipping the priming step could result in a subpar finish.

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