Do It Yourself Mortar Wash

The technique called "mortar wash" involves placing a coat of mortar over a brick, stone or concrete surface to either conceal the underlying material or partially conceal it. When used on brick, the technique results in a "painted" look that some homeowners find attractive. A mortar wash can be applied in thick or thin coats, with or without tint, to achieve a specific look.

Step 1

Clean the brick, stone or concrete surface so it is free of dirt, mold and loose mortar.

Step 2

Mix one part water to five parts pre-mixed mortar in a large pail. Add tint if desired. Stir until the mixture forms a smooth, stiff slurry.

Step 3

Wet the surface you wish to "mortar wash" with water using a brush. Apply mortar mixture to the wet surface with a steel trowel in the thickness desired, working from top to bottom.

Step 4

Wipe the surface with a dry rag, if desired, to expose underlying material in certain areas.

Step 5

When the mortar wash is dry, sand it, paint over it, or leave it as is.


Matthew Huntington

Matthew Huntington has been writing travel articles since 2002. His pieces have appeared in "National Geographic Traveler," "American Way" and "The Miami Herald." Huntington speaks fluent Spanish and has lived in many parts of Latin America, including Ecuador, Guatemala and Puerto Rico. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in European studies from Brigham Young University.