Eco Plasters & Eco Backgrounds
Eco plasters can be lime based or clay based. They are breathable and much softer than gypsum. Some of the most popular eco plasters are outlined below.
Hemp and lime
Hemp is used with lime as an insulating aggregate. The fibre can be used in base coats to increase insulation on the internal face of external masonry walls. It can be applied to any of the sustainable backgrounds detailed below and can be finished with a traditional fine white lime finish or with fine/medium hemp to give a rather beautiful textured surface.
Glaster is made using crushed recycled glass as an aggregate to replace the sand that is traditionally used in plaster. It has a similar cost to traditional lime plasters but the finish is quite different and exceptionally beautiful. In a fine flat trowelled finish, the surface can be acid-etched to reveal the twinkle of glass particles. In an external roughcast, a heavier aggregate can be used, resulting in a more noticeable glistening effect.
Many listed buildings were actually built and plastered with clay, with the addition of a bit of lime. Today there are a range of beautiful surface finishes on offer, which are popular in many modern eco builds as well as in traditional properties. Made from British clays, they range in colour depending on the clays used and/or the addition of pigment. They are softer than lime plasters, very breathable, and some have a sparkle thanks to the addition of the mineral magnesite.
- Eco backgrounds are made from modern, sustainable building products and include wool boards, wood fibre boards, reed mat and reed boards.
- Wool boards are an alternative to using gypsum plasterboard and are a very good carrier for lime plaster. They can be used internally or externally.
- Wood fibre boards are also a good alternative for gypsum plasterboard, with all the qualities outlined for wool boards. They can also be used for floors and roofs as they have insulating properties.
- Reed mats can be used for internal ceilings and walls.
- Reed boards can also be used for internal ceilings and walls. They are thicker than reed mats and have greater insulating qualities.