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The Difference Between Plastering and Rendering

The Difference Between Plastering and Rendering

Homeowners who have been considering getting their walls renovated may have heard about plastering and rendering. While they are both wall finishing techniques, there are differences in their use and composition. 

Though renovators can use similar materials for both techniques, plastering and rendering still differ in terms of durability, application method, as well as their appearance.

But, what really is the distinction between the two? To understand how the two processes are different, let’s decode why they are often confused.

Rendering vs Plastering: How are they similar?

Cement render and plaster are both types of mortar coating made up of the same ingredients. Both can be applied over a structure not just to create a more even surface, but to also give protection to blockwork.

Plaster refers to the coatings applied on interior walls, while render refers to the coatings on exterior surfaces.

While they differ in usage, they are both made using the same ingredients, which are a good mix of water, sand, and cement.


Render material is made with a heavier cement base, which makes it fit for external use. It is considered as the final layer of exterior walls and has to have a thicker base to make sure it’s weather-resistant.

It’s essential to render a structure, especially those that were developed with concrete or mud blocks. In doing so, these blocks will neither crack nor soften when exposed to water for a prolonged period.

Using a higher amount of cement also helps in protecting the exterior for many years, hence reducing long-term maintenance costs.

There are a number of reasons as to why rendering is commonly used on exterior walls and facades. It not only ensures that the exterior is waterproof and fireproof, but also enhances the texture of external surfaces, making it visually attractive.

Rendering can also provide an extra layer of insulation to walls and roofs.

Though most people prefer having a smooth render finish, others would opt for more textures and patterns. Nonetheless, both are acceptable and could complement the entire property.


Plastering is the process of covering rough interior blockwork walls and uneven surfaces, making it suitable for paint or wallpaper application. The mixture is made of less cement and less coarse sand than that of render, which provides a lighter finish.

However, compared to its counterpart, plaster is not weather-resistant. It is more commonly utilised for decorative functions.

Nonetheless, a good plaster material is still expected to fulfill construction requirements. It should still be hard and durable, and should be used as a shield from chemical attacks.

On the other hand, newly applied plaster should be left to dry from one week to a month
before proceeding to paint or wallpaper application.

To sum it all up

In short, the main difference between rendering and plastering is its application. One is meant for interior walls while the other is primarily used for the exterior. 

They’re both made of the same materials and can give protection to surfaces. Knowing their specific applications can now help you choose the right one to use! 

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