Can I Make My Own Whitewash?

Are you wondering how to make your own whitewash? Whitewash is an easy and affordable alternative to paint. It provides a rustic and vintage look into the furniture. The traditional whitewash is made by mixing masonry lime and water. It is a safe and non-toxic whitewash that can be used both indoor and outdoor. If you are interested in making a whitewash for your DIY projects, we have shared tips and ideas on how to make whitewash below.

Can I make my own whitewash? You can make your own whitewash using simple ingredients like chalk, masonry lime, and paint. Making whitewash is simple and affordable. To create the traditional whitewash, mix masonry lime, salt, and water. You can also create whitewash by diluting water-based or latex paint with water. Adjust the amount of water on the mixture to create the consistency that you want.

Whitewash is a fast, easy, and affordable solution that you can use as an alternative to paint. Below, we will discuss how to make whitewash using various ingredients. We will also share tips on how to add color to whitewash. Check out the rest of the article below for more information.

Can I make my own whitewash
Image by kropekk_pl from Pixabay

How to Make Traditional Whitewash Using Lime

To make traditional whitewash, you will need simple materials like masonry lime, salt, and water. These materials can be easily purchased at your local home depot or online. Make sure you masonry lime and not garden lime because they are different substances.

In a large container, combine salt, masonry lime, and water. Make sure that you wear protective gear such as gloves and goggles to protect yourself from the lime powder. Mix one gallon of warm water with two cups of salt and six to eight cups of masonry lime. Mix thoroughly until the ingredients are dissolved. The mixture should have a consistency that is thinner than paint.

How to Add Color

To add color to the traditional whitewash, you need to use natural powdered pigments. Choose a color of powdered pigment that you want and mix it with a small amount of warm water to create a paste. Then, add the colored pigment to the whitewash. Mix thoroughly until the colors are combined.

How to Make Whitewash with Paint

To make a whitewash using paint, you need to dilute it with water. Make sure to use water-based or latex paint to create the whitewash effect. In a container, pour a 1:1 ratio of water and paint. You can adjust the ratio according to the appearance that you want. The more water you add, the thinner the whitewash will be.

How to Add Color

Choose a colored paint that you want. Make sure that it is water-based or latex. Dilute the paint with water to achieve the consistency that you want. Test the consistency on a wooden swatch before applying it to the furniture. This way, you can find out what it will look on the material and you can decide whether to add more water or not.

How to Make Whitewash Using Chalk Paint

To make a whitewash using chalk paint, you need to mix chalk paint with water. Using chalk paint is easy but it can create a mess. You will need lots of space and make sure that your floors are protected by covering them with rags or newspapers. Create the whitewash by mixing half paint with half water.

Apply the whitewash into the wood using a brush making sure that it goes into the grain of the wood. Wipe the excess paint using a rag while it is still wet so you can achieve the color and intensity that you want. You can add as many layers as you need. We have also shared this article titled, does whitewash wash off? Check out the article for an in-depth discussion about the topic.

How to Add Color

Chalk paint comes in a wide array and you can easily choose whatever color that you like. Like with paint, dilute the colored chalk paint with water to achieve the consistency that you want.

✅ Video – How to Whitewash Furniture with Chalk Paint

Katie Scott SALVAGED by k. scott shared the video below on YouTube. It shows how to whitewash furniture with chalk paint. Chalk paint is another ingredient that you can use in making homemade whitewash. Check out the video for more tips and information.

How to Make Whitewash with Latex Paint

The basic formula to create a whitewash using latex paint is by mixing two parts of the latex paint into one part of water. If the mixture has a consistency that is too thick for you, you can continue to add water to thin it out. You can also sand the excess paint from the furniture after it dries. Apply the whitewash in the direction of the grain using a brush.

How Do You Make an Old Fashioned Whitewash?

Create an old-fashioned whitewash by mixing lime, water, and salt. In a container, add two gallons of warm water, masonry lime, and salt. Stir thoroughly and let it rest overnight. Make sure to stir it again before using it. Apply the whitewash using a broad and flat brush. The traditional whitewash has a watery consistency and is also thin.

How to Make Whitewash with Milk Paint

To make a whitewash with milk paint, combine non-fat dry milk and water and mix thoroughly. Keep stirring until the milk powder is completely dissolved. You can use the whitewash as is or you can also add colorants like vegetable dye, powdered pigment, or food coloring.

Milk paint is a good option for whitewash because it is durable and has a vibrant color. It is a natural paint that is widely used especially in farms and barns. Milk paint has the same texture as latex paints but it is easier to work with. There are many recipes that you can try. You can use milk paint indoor and outdoor.

How to Make Whitewash for Trees

Trees are whitewash to protect them from the sun. You can make whitewash for trees using latex paint or salt and lime. The rays of the sun can easily heat the bark of the trees which can affect their growth. Prolonged sun exposure causes the roots of the trees to remain dormant. This means that they cannot provide the right amount of water to the bark. Moreover, the heated bark cools quickly during the night which can cause them to split. As the bark splits, pests and insects can easily invade the tree. Below are different whitewash methods that you can use to whitewash trees.

Method 1 – Latex Paint

One method that you can use is latex paint. It is one of the components in making homemade whitewash for trees. Pure white latex paint can help to reflect the sun’s rays away from the trees. To create the whitewash, mix equal parts of water and latex paint. Adjust the ratio according to the consistency that you want. Apply the whitewash to the trunk and barks of the tree.

Method 2 – Salt and Lime

Another method that you can use is salt and lime. You can use hydrated lime or calcium hydroxide. Create the whitewash by pouring 3 gallons of water in a container and adding three pounds of regular table salt. Mix thoroughly until the salt is dissolved. Then, add ten pounds of hydrated lime into the mixture. Make sure that it is mixed well and the ingredients are evenly distributed. Use the whitewash to cover the barks and trunks of the trees.

Why Use Traditional Whitewash?

Traditional whitewash is used because it offers a lot of benefits. Traditional whitewash is made from water, lime, and salt. While it is traditionally white, it can be tinted with different colors by adding minerals. Aside from the aesthetic looks that it provides, traditional whitewash also has antibacterial properties. It is moisture resistant which helps prevent the growth of mold and mildew. Moreover, traditional whitewash is an insect repellant which makes it a good covering for barns and farms. You can also check out this article that discusses the purpose of whitewash is. We have shared an in-depth discussion about the topic.

Which Type of Lime is used for Whitewashing?

The type of lime that is used for whitewashing is hydrated lime or slaked quicklime. Whitewash that is made from slaked lime provides durability and also maintains its color. Make sure to use hydrated lime and not garden lime. The two are different and garden lime is not ideal for whitewashing.

Can You Whitewash with Color Paint?

You can create a whitewash using colored paint. Make sure that you use water-based or latex paint. Avoid using oil-based paint because it does not mix with water and the whitewash made from it easily peels off. You can choose from a wide array of colored paints available on the market. We have also shared this article that discusses if you can whitewash with any color. You can check out the article to learn more about colored whitewash.

Whitewash Paint to Water Ratio

The typical whitewash is made with a ratio of one-part paint and one-part water. On the other hand, the ratio can change according to the consistency of the whitewash that you would like to have. For instance, if you want to have a thin consistency, you need to add more water to the mixture. However, you need to add more paint if you are looking for a thicker consistency on your whitewash. You can also check out this article titled, why do you whitewash trees? We have shared tips and information about the importance of whitewashing trees.


You have reached the end of this article that discusses if you can make your own whitewash. We have learned that you can make your own whitewash using various ingredients. The common ingredients used are masonry lime, water-based paint, and chalk paint. Each of these ingredients has its pros and cons. Consider your options so that you can choose the type of whitewash that you can do at home. Thank you for reading!

Recent Posts