Why is Easy Sand not Suitable as a Skim Coat?

Skim coating is a popular method for smoothing rough or damaged walls. It involves applying a thin layer of mud or joint compound with a special squeegee knife. The process is relatively straightforward and can deliver great results when done correctly. However, not all products are suitable for this task. One such product is Easy Sand. This article will delve into the reasons why Easy Sand is not suitable as a skim coat.

Understanding Skim Coating

Before we delve into the specifics of Easy Sand, it’s important to understand what skim coating is and why it’s used. Skim coating is a plastering technique that involves applying a thin layer of compound to smooth out rough or damaged walls. This technique is often used by professionals to repair walls that have been damaged or to create a smooth surface for painting or wallpapering.

Why is Easy Sand not Suitable as a Skim Coat
Why is Easy Sand not Suitable as a Skim Coat

The Role of Joint Compound in Skim Coating

Joint compound, also known as mud, plays a crucial role in skim coating. It’s the material that’s applied to the walls to create a smooth surface. The joint compound needs to have the right consistency – not too thick and not too thin – to ensure it adheres to the wall properly and dries evenly. It’s also important that the joint compound is easy to work with and can be smoothly applied and spread on the wall.

What is Easy Sand?

Easy Sand is a type of joint compound that’s often used in drywall installation and repair. It’s known for its easy-to-sand properties, which makes it a popular choice for tasks that require sanding, such as creating seamless joints between drywall panels.

Why Easy Sand is Not Suitable for Skim Coating

While Easy Sand may be a great product for certain drywall tasks, it’s not the best choice for skim coating. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Shrinkage: Easy Sand is known to shrink as it dries. This is not a problem when it’s used for its intended purpose – filling and sanding joints between drywall panels. However, when used for skim coating, this shrinkage can lead to cracks and an uneven surface.
  2. Difficulty in Spreading: Easy Sand is thicker and harder to spread than other types of joint compound. This can make it difficult to achieve a smooth, even layer when skim coating.
  3. Sanding Challenges: While Easy Sand is easy to sand, this property is not beneficial for skim coating. The purpose of skim coating is to create a smooth surface without the need for sanding. If the skim coat needs to be sanded, it can create a lot of dust and additional work.

Alternatives to Easy Sand for Skim Coating

Given the challenges with using Easy Sand for skim coating, it’s advisable to use other types of joint compound that are better suited for this task. Here are a few alternatives:

  1. All-Purpose Joint Compound: This type of joint compound is a versatile option that’s suitable for a variety of tasks, including skim coating. It has a creamy consistency that’s easy to spread and it dries with minimal shrinkage.
  2. Topping Compound: Topping compound is another good option for skim coating. It’s lighter and smoother than all-purpose joint compound, making it easy to spread. It also sands easily if needed.
  3. Setting-Type Joint Compound: This type of joint compound hardens quickly through a chemical reaction, rather than air drying. It’s very durable and has minimal shrinkage, making it a good option for skim coating.


While Easy Sand is a great product for certain drywall tasks, it’s not the best choice for skim coating due to its tendency to shrink, difficulty in spreading, and the unnecessary sanding it requires. Instead, consider using all-purpose joint compound, topping compound, or setting-type joint compound for your skim coating needs. By choosing the right product, you can ensure a smooth, even surface that’s ready for painting or wallpapering.

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