Orange Peel Vs Knockdown Texture


When it comes to interior wall finishes, homeowners and contractors have a wide array of options to choose from. Among the popular choices are orange peel and knockdown textures, both of which add dimension and visual interest to walls. These finishes not only conceal imperfections but also provide a unique aesthetic appeal. In this article, we will delve into the characteristics, application techniques, pros and cons, and overall suitability of orange peel and knockdown textures. By understanding the differences between these two finishes, readers can make informed decisions when it comes to selecting the ideal texture for their walls.

What is Orange Peel Texture?

Orange peel is a texturizer that sprays spores of various sizes, usually available in a can. They are not so large as to be irritating to the touch and create a more uniform feel and appearance than other types of texture.

Common builders build new homes and use orange peel in kitchens and bathrooms because of its cleanliness and durability in high-use areas of the home.

The orange peel texture has stood the test of time and went through all the different textures from the 1970s to the early 1990s. The texture of orange peel is on the roofs and walls of millions of homes.

The texture of orange peel adds character to surfaces and blends well with natural or soft colors. However, it is difficult to clean because it is almost impossible to reach the small spaces between the ovaries.

Orange peel texture is a versatile yet minimalist texture that can add a warm and welcoming feel to any wall or ceiling.

Orange peels come in powdered form which can be mixed with water to get the right consistency depending on the type of orange peel you are going for (heavy, medium or large) or trying to blend. I need to mix.

Orange peel is easy to make: spray it on the roof in small bursts of half a meter or so, then wait for it to dry, prime and paint. Try the sealing texture spray on a piece of cardboard first and test to make sure you’ve chosen the best angle and distance.


Orange peel texture offers several advantages that make it a desirable choice for many homeowners and contractors:

  • Easy Application: Compared to knockdown texture, orange peel texture is relatively easier to apply. The process involves spraying or rolling thinned drywall compound onto the surface and lightly flattening the raised bumps with a trowel or texture brush. This simplicity makes it a popular choice for DIY enthusiasts who want to tackle wall texturing projects themselves.
  • Hides Imperfections: One of the significant advantages of orange peel texture is its ability to conceal minor wall imperfections. The textured surface helps to mask small dents, scratches, or uneven areas, making it ideal for walls that are not perfectly smooth.
  • Versatility: Orange peel texture is versatile and can complement various interior design styles. It works well in contemporary or transitional settings, adding subtle character and dimension to the walls while maintaining a clean and modern look.
  • Subtle Visual Effect: Orange peel texture adds a touch of depth and visual interest to walls without overwhelming the overall design scheme. It provides a textured surface that diffuses light, creating a soft and inviting ambiance in a room.


While orange peel texture offers many benefits, it also has a few limitations to consider:

  • Limited Texture Variation: Orange peel texture tends to have a relatively uniform and consistent appearance throughout the wall surface. If you’re looking for a more dramatic or varied texture, such as deep grooves or pronounced patterns, orange peel may not be the ideal choice.
  • Difficulty in Repairing: Although orange peel texture is forgiving when it comes to minor touch-ups, repairing larger areas or matching the texture exactly can be challenging. Achieving a seamless blend between the new and existing texture requires skill and experience.
  • Susceptible to Cracking: Like any textured finish, orange peel texture is prone to cracking over time. Changes in humidity or structural movement can cause the drywall compound to crack, requiring periodic maintenance and repairs.

How to Apply Orange Peel Texture

Applying orange peel texture to your walls requires careful preparation and the right tools. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to apply orange peel texture:

1. Prepare the Surface:

  • Ensure that the wall surface is clean, dry, and free from any loose debris or dirt.
  • Patch any holes, cracks, or imperfections using joint compound or spackling paste. Allow the repairs to dry completely and sand them smooth.

2. Protect the Surrounding Areas:

  • Cover the floors and any furniture or fixtures in the room with drop cloths or plastic sheets to protect them from overspray.

3. Mix the Drywall Compound:

  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to mix the drywall compound to the desired consistency. The compound should be thin enough to spray or roll easily, but not too runny.

4. Choose the Application Method:

  • You can apply orange peel texture using a sprayer or a roller, depending on your preference and the size of the project. A sprayer generally provides a more even application, while a roller is suitable for smaller areas or touch-ups.

5. Apply the Texture:

  • If using a sprayer:
      • Fill the sprayer with the mixed drywall compound.
      • Hold the sprayer at a 45-degree angle to the wall and apply an even coat of the compound, moving the sprayer in a consistent, overlapping pattern. Start from the top corner and work your way down.
      • Apply the compound in a light, mist-like manner rather than heavy coats to avoid excessive buildup.
  • If using a roller:
      • Pour the mixed drywall compound into a paint tray.
      • Use a medium-nap roller cover specifically designed for textured finishes.
      • Roll the compound onto the wall in a consistent, overlapping pattern, covering a manageable section at a time.

6. Knock Down the Texture:

  • After applying the texture, let it set for a few minutes to partially dry, but not completely harden.
  • Use a trowel or a specialized texture brush to lightly flatten the raised bumps, creating the characteristic orange peel texture. Hold the trowel or brush at a low angle and make gentle, random strokes across the surface.
  • Avoid excessive pressure or smoothing, as it can flatten the texture too much.

7. Allow the Texture to Dry:

  • Let the orange peel texture dry completely according to the manufacturer’s instructions before proceeding with painting or further finishing.

Remember to practice the application technique on a sample board or a hidden area before applying the orange peel texture to your walls. This will help you get a feel for the process and ensure the desired result.

How to Remove Orange Peel Texture

Removing orange peel texture from walls can be a labor-intensive process, but it is possible with the right tools and techniques. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to remove orange peel texture:

1. Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials:

    • Protective eyewear and a dust mask
    • Drop cloths or plastic sheets to protect the floor
    • Joint compound or spackling paste
    • Broad putty knife or drywall knife
    • Hand sander or sanding block
    • Pole sander (optional)
    • Trowel or drywall blade
    • Water and sponge

2. Test for Asbestos (if applicable):

  • If your home was built before the 1980s, there is a possibility that the orange peel texture contains asbestos. In this case, it is crucial to have a professional assess the situation and handle the removal process safely.

3. Soften the Texture:

  • Use a spray bottle to dampen the orange peel texture with water. This will help soften the compound and make it easier to remove.

4. Scrape the Texture:

  • Starting at a corner or edge of the wall, use a broad putty knife or drywall knife to scrape off the softened texture. Hold the tool at a low angle and apply even pressure as you scrape. Work in small sections at a time.

5. Repair and Smoothen the Surface:

  • Once the majority of the texture is removed, inspect the wall for any remaining bumps or imperfections.
  • Use joint compound or spackling paste to fill in any holes, gouges, or uneven areas. Apply the compound with a trowel or drywall blade and smooth it out to create a flat surface.
  • Allow the compound to dry completely according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Removing orange peel texture requires patience and careful attention to detail. It is essential to take breaks when needed and protect yourself with proper safety gear. If you are unsure or uncomfortable with the process, it is recommended to consult a professional for assistance.

What is Knockdown Texture?

The knockdown texture finish is the successor to the orange peel texture of the early 1990s. It has become popular among homeowners due to its impressive looks and practicality.

To get a knockdown texture like this, you need to dilute the consistency of the joint compound by adding water. You’ll also need a knockdown tool to apply this mixture, but if you don’t have one, you can use a trowel.

Spray, trowel, or roll drywall joint compound onto the wall or ceiling to achieve stalactite-like ridges, then smooth the ridges with a knockdown knife. The resulting distorted, natural texture adds dimensional visual effects and hides any surface imperfections in the hand.

As a bonus, the treatment helps quiet the voices. Another part of the appeal? DIYers can easily create the look with basic drywall skills and some inexpensive tools and materials. It is prepared by placing a plaster foundation and gently patting it over the entire surface with a soft brush or sponge.

Knockdown texture finishes are popular in bedrooms, living rooms and hallways. This type of texture involves spraying a coat of paint about ⅛ inch thick. After the first coat has dried, the raised areas are removed using a putty knife or trowel. This type of textured paint is tough and durable.

Knockdown has a larger texture than an orange peel. This drywall consists of spots of clay (composite) board but is still smooth because its components do not have edges.


Knockdown texture offers its own set of advantages that make it a popular choice for homeowners and contractors:

  • Enhanced Visual Impact: Knockdown texture provides a more pronounced visual effect compared to orange peel. The irregular patterns of indentations create a textured surface that adds depth and dimension to walls, making them visually captivating.
  • Camouflages Imperfections: Similar to orange peel texture, knockdown texture is effective at concealing minor wall imperfections. The textured surface helps to mask small cracks, bumps, or uneven areas, making it suitable for older homes or walls with surface irregularities.
  • Versatile Style: Knockdown texture works well in a variety of design styles, particularly those that aim for a rustic or Mediterranean aesthetic. It adds a sense of warmth, authenticity, and architectural interest to spaces.
  • Ease of Repair: Knockdown texture is relatively easier to repair compared to other textured finishes. If a portion of the wall gets damaged, it can be patched and matched to blend with the existing texture more seamlessly.


While knockdown texture offers unique benefits, there are a few drawbacks to consider:

  • Challenging Application: Compared to orange peel texture, applying knockdown texture requires more skill and practice. Timing is crucial, as the peaks need to be flattened at the right moment to achieve the desired effect. Inexperienced individuals may find it challenging to achieve consistent results.
  • Time-consuming Process: Applying knockdown texture typically takes longer than orange peel texture. The waiting period between applying the texture and knocking down the peaks adds an extra step to the process, increasing the overall project time.
  • Less Forgiving for Touch-ups: If touch-ups or repairs are needed, matching the existing knockdown texture can be more challenging than with orange peel texture. Achieving a seamless blend requires skill and experience to recreate the irregular patterns and indentations.
  • Limited Versatility: While knockdown texture works well in rustic or Mediterranean design styles, it may not be suitable for all interior aesthetics. Its more pronounced texture and irregular patterns may clash with sleek, modern designs, limiting its versatility in certain settings.
  • Difficulty in Cleaning: The uneven surface of knockdown texture can make cleaning more challenging compared to smoother finishes like orange peel. Dust and dirt can accumulate in the crevices, requiring extra effort to maintain the cleanliness of the walls.

How to Apply Knockdown Texture

To apply a knockdown texture, you will need the following materials and tools:


  1. Drywall joint compound (also known as mud)
  2. Water
  3. Texture sprayer or hopper gun
  4. Wide putty knife or trowel
  5. Plastic drop cloths
  6. Painter’s tape


  1. Drill with mixing attachment (if using a pre-mixed joint compound)
  2. Paint roller with a long nap
  3. Step ladder
  4. Safety goggles
  5. Dust mask

Now, let’s go through the steps to apply a knockdown texture:

1. Prepare the room:

  • Remove any furniture or objects from the area where you’ll be working.
  • Cover the floors and any remaining furniture with plastic drop cloths to protect them from texture overspray.

2. Prepare the walls:

  • Ensure that the walls are clean, dry, and free of any loose debris or dust.
  • Use painter’s tape to protect any adjacent surfaces that you don’t want to texture, such as trim or windows.

3. Mix the joint compound:

  • If you’re using a pre-mixed joint compound, skip this step. If not, follow the instructions on the package to mix the joint compound with water in a large bucket. Use a drill with a mixing attachment to achieve a smooth consistency.

4. Load the texture sprayer or hopper gun:

  • Fill the texture sprayer or hopper gun with the mixed joint compound.
  • Adjust the nozzle or pressure settings according to the desired texture pattern and size. Test it on a piece of scrap drywall or cardboard to ensure the desired result.

5. Apply the texture:

  • Start in one corner of the room and work your way across the wall.
  • Hold the texture sprayer or hopper gun at a slight angle to the wall and about 18 to 24 inches away.
  • Apply an even coat of the joint compound by moving the sprayer or gun in a sweeping motion. Be consistent with the distance and speed of your movements to maintain an even texture.

6. Wait for the texture to partially dry:

  • Allow the texture to set for a short period, typically 10 to 15 minutes. The drying time may vary depending on the climate and the thickness of the texture.

7. Knock down the texture:

  • After the initial drying period, use a wide putty knife or trowel to gently flatten the texture.
  • Hold the putty knife at a slight angle and lightly skim it across the textured surface. This action will create the desired knockdown effect, flattening the peaks and leaving a textured pattern.

8. Let the texture fully dry:

  • Allow the knockdown texture to dry completely according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This typically takes several hours or overnight.

Remember to follow safety precautions throughout the process, such as wearing safety goggles and a dust mask to protect yourself from airborne particles.

How to Remove Knockdown Texture

Removing knockdown texture from walls can be a labor-intensive process, but it is achievable with the right tools and techniques. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to remove knockdown texture:

2. Safety precautions:

  • Wear safety goggles, a dust mask, and protective clothing to prevent inhalation of dust and debris.
  • Open windows and use fans to ventilate the area.

3. Wet the surface:

  • Fill a spray bottle with warm water and lightly mist a small section of the knockdown texture.
  • Allow the water to penetrate the texture for a few minutes, softening it.

4. Scrape the texture:

  • Use a wide putty knife or a drywall scraper to gently scrape off the softened knockdown texture.
  • Hold the scraper at a shallow angle and apply even pressure to avoid damaging the underlying drywall.
  • Work in small sections, approximately 2 to 3 feet wide, to make the process more manageable.

5. Remove any remaining texture:

  • For stubborn or hard-to-reach areas, you may need to use a textured ceiling patch product or joint compound.
  • Apply the patch or joint compound to the areas with a putty knife, feathering the edges to blend with the surrounding wall surface.
  • Allow it to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

4. Sand the surface:

  • Once the knockdown texture has been removed, sand the entire wall surface to create a smooth finish.
  • Use a medium-grit sanding sponge or sandpaper to sand away any remaining texture and create an even surface.

5. Clean up:

  • Vacuum or sweep the area to remove any dust and debris.
  • Wipe down the walls with a damp cloth to ensure they are clean and ready for further treatment or paint.

Remember, removing knockdown texture can be a time-consuming and messy process. If you are not comfortable doing it yourself or if the texture covers a large area, it might be best to hire a professional contractor who specializes in texture removal to ensure a smooth and efficient process.

Final Thoughts on Orange Peel Texture Vs Knockdown Texture

When it comes to comparing orange peel ceiling texture and knockdown textures, the main difference is the visual appearance and application process.

Orange peel ceiling texture looks as if you covered the ceiling with citrus peels and painted over it. Knockdown ceiling textures add more depth.

Both are great at hiding imperfections and adding texture to your room.


When comparing Orange Peel vs Knockdown texture, the main difference is the visual appearance and application process. The orange peel ceiling texture looks like you covered the ceiling with citrus peels and painted over it. Knockdown ceiling textures add more depth.

Both are applied the same way, except you must use a drywall knife or knockdown trowel to achieve the knockdown ceiling texture. They both are great for hiding imperfections and adding texture to your room.