• Kylie Harber

Wallpaper: What is the difference between 'Peel and Stick' vs 'Paste the Wall'?

Updated: Sep 2

In wallpaper terminology, there's actually a few different types of wallpaper available.

It does get confusing, so we're here to help.

Let's break this down, so you can feel confident when you engage an interior designer or start to look at ordering online.

{i left my heart} in Brisbane mural, 2018 - 'Paste the Wall' wallpaper mural

1. Paste the Wall

A traditional method that stands the test of time.

You, or your wallpaper installer, apply glue to the wall and press the wallpaper against it. Dry wallpaper weighs less, which means there's less chance of it tearing. Dry wallpaper is also (in my opinion) better for the environment generally - many papers are sourced from sustainable forests and printed with environmentally friendly inks (ours are!).

We recommend hiring a professional wallpaper installer - it's quite an art form to get it right. The glue is important - commercially available, high quality glue makes a huge difference.

Using a professional installer will get you the most professional outcome, and it's worth every penny.

2. Paste the Paper

With 'Paste the Paper' method, the paste is applied to the back of the wallpaper before hanging. This approach requires soak time, which is a way to activate the paste while letting the paper rest before hanging. It also requires a big flat surface to apply the paste to the wallpaper.

3. Peel and Stick

Perfect for the DIY'ers among us!

Unlike traditional wallpaper, there’s no need for messy glue.

And no need to steam for removal. This wallpaper is perfect for easy installation and will transform your room in an instant.

You 'peel' the backing sheet off slowly, and press it to the wall, smoothing and peeling as you go.Each panel is self-adhesive and repositionable so if you don't get the alignment right on the first go, keep trying! It sure takes the pressure off. Still, I recommend getting a second pair of hands to help. While it can be installed solo, it will be easier and faster with two people.

The downside? Peel and stick wallpapers don't adhere to everything. In fact, they don't apply well to walls with most paints (especially 'Wash and Wear' paints that are popular here in Australia), because most paints have surfactants in them that will prevent the wallpaper sticking to the paint. So steer clear of any paints that may have teflon in them.

If you're not sure what paint type is currently on your wall, prep your wall with gloss or semi-gloss acrylic paint. You'll need to allow your paint to dry for a minimum of 10 days before applying the wallpaper.

Good luck with choosing your next wallpaper.


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