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Would a professional plasterer use one coat plaster?

We've had our living room re plastered and the result is pretty poor in places, especially around sockets and near corners. The plasterer used one coat plaster which I've never come across before. I've had other jobs done and the plasterer's always used pink gypsum and the results have been much better. I want to get this guy back to improve the finish but need to know if other plasterers use this stuff.

62 Answers from MyBuilder Plasterers

Best Answer

The best place for one coat plaster is in the skip.
As for getting your plasterer back, I wouldnt bother, get one who knows what hes doing.


Answered 1st Mar 2011

I have been using universal one coat for years ! It was used by local authorities and my last big job with it was an extension to a lifeboat station .
Walls had to be finished to exactly 14 mm depth . Was tricky at first but soon got the hang of it . With the correct tools . I challenge any plasterer out there that I can one coat a wall and finish it as smooth as pink gypsum , quicker than they could float and set the same wall to the same depth ! I have been in the trade 30 years and been using it as long as I can remember . Without one comeback !


Answered 1st Feb 2015

i sometimes use one-coat for patching up small holes or for repairing plaster around electrical sockets and is perfectly fine IF you know how to use it properly but i would NEVER re-plaster a whole room with it.
If your re-plastering work was done from the brickwork,looks like your 'plasterer' has tried to cut corners big time,but if he has used it for re-skimming,then that just beggars belief!

My advice:
1.Don't call him again.If he can't do the job right first time..............
2.Get someone round who truly knows what they are doing.

Good luck with everything.
Hope this helps,


Answered 2nd Mar 2011

Hi There I'm a plasterer living in the norfolk area most of my work is in old 1800 + year old houses cottages some of the clients prefer universal one coat which basically means only 1 coat is applied usually from 4mm to 11mm to be honest it looks ok in a old cottage type house some prefer it to be brushed in for the old rustic look I hate it personally as for pink multi finish golden rule is always use 2 coats and ensure areas are brushed or rolled with a pva solution and all should be as smooth as a babies arse the bags of one coat are more expensive and the finish product is no where near as good as multi finish regards tim


Answered 2nd Mar 2011

Big massive NAW, multi finish if skimming 1st coat then a laying coat and polish up,wouldn`t even use 1 coat on ma enemies walls ha ha ,you see a spread bringing it out a van lock your doors. PS i`ve been plastering for 30 yrs


Answered 1st Apr 2011

No a pro plasterer will not use one coat, they will use pink gypsum or similar, and apply two coats.A lot of DIY people use one coat.You will need to get rid of the one coat and start again for a pro finish


Answered 1st Mar 2011

Agree with all the above. Would never use the stuff. Always Thistle multi-finish and apply two coats.


Answered 1st Mar 2011

Never. Only Thistle multi finish plaster


Answered 1st Mar 2011

Hi, I've been plastering for nearly 16 years

Basically one coat plaster was brought in for new housing developments for speed ... if you are plastering over plasterboard lafarge universal one coat is perfectly ok to use.

But if you are replastering walls, you have to use thistle multi finish two coat plaster.

I think the saying goes ..."horses for courses"




Answered 22nd Jul 2013

2 coats of multi finish only.......not 3 this is wrong... if your walls are bad. you use bonding or hardwall first....


Answered 1st Mar 2011

HI, in answer to your ? is no always use two coats lay first coat on tidy as poss then close in top coat kind regards rigsby.


Answered 1st Mar 2011

Hello, number of plaster coats depends on surface you have to cover really. Generaly we can say 2 coats give you good finish but sometimes even 2 are not enough to cover uneven surface. 1 coat - hmm... I've seen this couple times and the results were not bad but efforts to give nice finish were even harder when using 2 coats technic. I strongly recommend 2 coats as a base - if surface is still not nice - do it again (another coat) - whatever you do - do it properly - once for life.


Answered 1st Mar 2011

Hi there Ive been plastering for over ten years and I wouldnt use it ,I have use it once but then had to cover it with normal gypsum finish.


Answered 1st Mar 2011

I have to agree with the lads on here, one coat is for the diy er.
The rule is proper prep of walls first ie a bonding coat or similar.
Control the background with pva solution if there is a lot of suction, and then skim in the usual way 2 coats of finish plaster either muti or board finish, I prefer board finish as its a better quality than muti but that's just my opinion.
Sounds like you had a lad who don't really knows what hes doing, I would try and get your money back, but pigs might fly.

Good Luck


Answered 21st Mar 2011

I have been plastering for 30 years and have used the one coat system On a quite a few occasions. this system was designed to be machine appllied by spraying it on, and building it up in layers , you can get a good a finish as the gypsum finish but you need to have been taught how to use it correctly. I used it in Germany were site were set up to accomodate the spray machines,
it would be to much hassle to set it up for a small job in the UK. Best to stick with what you know how to use in my opinion.


Answered 26th Jan 2017

No qualified plasterer would you use one coat it is normaly used by DIY users on small patches

we would never use this method all good plasteres should leave a finish of good smooth condition ready for emulsion or papering

Dont pay if not happy get carried out correctly !


Answered 2nd Mar 2011

I've been a plastering contractor for 14 years commercial and domestic had lots of plasterers of all abilities working for me and none have one coated .

I'm not saying this is the case and there will be a hell of alot a spreads out there who agree with me ,there seems to be slot of people in recent times who fail to realise what hard work and dedication it takes to master this trade and along with that we require a certain rate of pay which is well deserved.
Some customers simply won't pay it.
ENTER our £80 a day one coater from the pub that takes 3 days to ruin a 12x12 room

Like I said im not saying thats the issue in your case but hire a pro with good feedback or your able too view recent jobs he's done.

All the best hope your sort things.

Kind regards Lee Eaton


Answered 16th Jun 2013

All these so called plasterers and they cannot use thistle one-coat plaster it's a brilliant product if you can use it.
It's completely different system to thistle multi finish, you still lay it on the same with 2 coats it just covers thicker without issues.
But primarily I would only use in a period property normally.
If it's not done right it will be rubbish. "chancer's" don't stand a chance unless taught properly. If you want a plasterer they should be able to do it... If you want a skimmer who can only skim (basics ) then expect issues I say.
All the best


Answered 7th Sep 2018

Hi there

Any professional plasterer would in no way use one coat plaster. The reasons being that you will never get the true fine finish that is required and will usually get the finish that you have received.

Personally, I would always with no exceptions 2 coat any room, wall or even drywall repair. One coat means the job is obviously completed quicker, however this very much is a 'lazy' way of plastering and should not be done.

Hope this helps.


Answered 8th Nov 2011

Hi, any professional plasterer would use thistle multi finish, one coat plaster is used by diy ers , who only do the odd bit of filling prior to decorating.


Answered 1st Mar 2011

If you speak to a mate of mine who works for knauf, he'll say why not give one coat a go ? I a professional plaster used to working with thistle multi-finish, i found that the drying/going-off time varied considerably. All pro plasters will say work with what you know....i would never work with one-coat again.


Answered 12th Mar 2011

Hi, I am a property maintenance guy and a domestic Electrician, I only use one coat around the sockets/switches that I have had to install unless I know a plasterer is coming in behind me purely to protect the cables from being pulled back out the wall. I wouldn't use it for a whole wall as it would terrible and would need to be re-sanded/skimmed anyway. Even the plasterers that I use pink thistle stuff as it looks much better when it has gone off and it means that it has been done properly, it is an art that needs to be mastered


Answered 5th May 2015

I personally would'nt touch one coat. Always multi finish applied in two coats.
Dont bother trying to get the bloke back!! Did he give you a written quote, if so demand your money back. If the wall is salvageable try using fine sand paper on a block and give it a light rub down, getting rid of trowel lines and wobbles etc...

Good luck.


Answered 18th Mar 2011

Hi no way should a pro or amature plasterer do one coat or use one coat plaster,ask for money back,get a pro plasterer,who applys two coats,good luck.


Answered 2nd Mar 2011

One coat is for plasterers trying to get in and out quick. It could never have a 10 year guarantee. The second coat plays the main part in making a wall truly flat and even. 2 coating is far more durable. 1 coat needs a lot of water to get flat which then weakens plaster also.


Answered 24th Apr 2016

I've been plastering for 8 years and not once have I been tempted. Multi finish all the way unless you've got a small job on and then I use board finish as this tends to go off quicker. Theres a lot of truth in what they say - if its not broke, dont fix it!

I would try and contact the bloke, if he values his business and customers he should at least help rectify the problem.


Answered 27th Jul 2016

Hi Simonewt
In response to your question regarding onecoat plaster its a definant no go this sounds like the work of a chancer,best bet is to have walls reskimmed with two coats of gypsum multi finish preferably not by the same person who did it originally, just a shame you've had to waste time and money in this way good luck with it.
Regards Dean


Answered 1st Mar 2011

As above, always two coats, and a sign of a good plasterer is the finish that is obtained around sockets corners and such, along with finish on walls. One coat is for the rip off merchants, and there about. How much were you charged?


Answered 13th Mar 2013

In my opinion i would always use gypsum multi finnish, the finnish is so much better than one coat and its also cheeper.
Hope this helps you out
Many thanks
ADW Plastering


Answered 12th Feb 2017

If you know what you're doing there is no better stuff...with experience you can get a marble finish...however I've dropped every clanger going till I got into it..


Answered 13th May 2019

Some plasterers do two coat and the end result is rubbish. Some do only 1 coat and result is rubbish too.
I personally do one coat and result and finish is great every time. It's all about skills and technique. I don't have any plastering degree. I have learned the one coat technique and practiced it and master it.


Answered 14th Apr 2020

hi,one coat plaster is normally not used by decent plasterers as it is generally designed for DIY purposes and you would not get a finish which is as good as multi or board finish which is sipplied by british gypson.


Answered 8th Aug 2011

No no no very bad stuff. crap finish. paul


Answered 4th Jun 2014

Two coats of plaster is a must for a true professional finish.If your going to do a job do it right especially if your doing it for a paying customer.


Answered 13th Jun 2016

One coat plaster will only give you half the job that your paying for and should always be done in two coats of multi finish. Put it this way I wouldnt have it anywhere near my house


Answered 20th Oct 2016

I for one like most other real plasterers I know wont ever use one coat for patching nevermind a full room.sure we have all most likely tried it at some point for small patching work ie around sockets etc but it should never of been allowed to be on the shelves in the first place.bin it or even better uninvent it self respecting plasterer will ever use it and as for the plasterer whom used it then please what ever you do do not I repeat! Do not get him back .


Answered 19th Feb 2017

I would say one coat plaster is for someone who isn't a professional in the plaster trade unless it was specified by the customer which you can only advise otherwise


Answered 10th Apr 2017

One coat is not good stick to multi every one uses it and it's guarantied the best plaster to use


Answered 19th Apr 2016

Two Applications of multi finish is always the standard. (A pro should know).


Answered 9th May 2016

i have heard of it but i dont agree with it i would never consider putting any less then 2 coats on as your first coat is about 2 mm and that evens walls out your second coat is about 1 mm and that gives you your nice smooth finish i would not employ someone who uses one coat even if its a thick coat 2 or none


Answered 2nd Aug 2016

One coat plaster is only for for diy use no tradesmen would use it if there good at there job


Answered 16th Jan 2017

Never use one coat plaster its for diy's always use a 2 coat system of thistle multi finish or board finish never one coat plaster it's for cowboys



Answered 31st Mar 2017

2 coats always multi finish. No decent plasterer would ever just use one coat


Answered 13th Aug 2017

One coat plaster is poor should always be 2coats to allow for coverage to fill in any misses or discrepancies on the wall to ensure a high quality finish


Answered 14th Jul 2018

On the plasterboard should be all the time 2 coats. Otherwise you not gonna get nice finish.


Answered 16th Feb 2019

Always Thistle multi-finish and apply two coats. Basically one coat plaster was brought in for new housing developments for speed ... if you are plastering over plasterboard lafarge universal one coat is perfectly ok to use. But if you are replastering walls, you have to use thistle multi finish two coat plaster.


Answered 13th Jul 2019

Hi there, 1 coat plaster should never be used it is a terrible material, 2 coat process is in my opinion the only way in every case!


Answered 5th Apr 2016

Never use one coat plaster its for diy's always use a 2 coat system of thistle multi finish or board finish never one coat plaster it's for cowboys


Answered 27th Nov 2017

In my opinion i don’t recommend one coat plasterer. Always get a better job when using muilt finish or thirst board finish and doing 2 coats of plasterer.


Answered 15th Sep 2018

Never one coat that’s not the wright way that’s the layzey. Way


Answered 30th Oct 2018

You Always get a better job when using muilt finish or thirst board finish and doing 2 coats of plaster


Answered 5th Nov 2018

No I wouldn’t use that stuff only good place that belongs is the skip. Only Thistle multi finish plaster that I would use!!


Answered 17th Jan 2019

Any plasterer that knows his trade would never use one coat plaster on walls
Multi finish gypsum is the best for plastering and he should have known that so I would get some different


Answered 9th Apr 2020

I have used one coat plaster on many occasions there is nothing wrong with
The product at all if you cant use it
And you are a plasterer then the best place for your tools is in the skip


Answered 14th Mar 2021

To keep it short and sweet, No. Professionals would not use one coat to plaster a whole room.


Answered 20th Mar 2021

No one coat . Two coat all the way


Answered 11th Mar 2022

This is certainly not a common practice, this guy is a cowboy, and its people like him that give good honest tradesmen a bad name.
I would ask for the money back, ( I expect she paid more for a bodge job than what a good tiler on this site would charge)
It wont be long before those tiles are falling of, he should have stripped the old ones of first, cleaned the walls, repair and plaster damage before tiling using a good water proof tile adhesive.


Answered 3rd May 2022

Hi only for small patches!

Kind regards Mihail


Answered 15th May 2022

Should never skim with 1 coat always done in two would call him back to come and do it properly


Answered 28th Sep 2022

I would always 2 coat


Answered 3rd Nov 2022

I’d highly recommend not to use it, I used it once as a customer already bought it and I had to cover it with proper stuff


Answered 28th Nov 2022

In my opinion no professional plasterer should ever consider using a one coat plaster. Thistle multi finish should be applied with two coats for the job to be completed correctly. Some may argue and say a one coat plaster is useful for a small patch job but I wouldn’t touch it personally..


Answered 13th Jan 2023

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