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    Choosing the best paint for your brick exterior

    Know how to select the right paint for your brick exterior house.

    Chin Suarez | Oneflare
    Updated 21 Mar 2024

    When it comes to giving your home a fresh and captivating look, few things can match the timeless charm of exterior brick surfaces. The rustic and classic appeal of brick walls adds character and depth to any home. But with time, they may require a facelift to keep them looking their best. This is where choosing the right paint for exterior brick comes into play! 

    A newly painted brick house can help transform your house’s kerb appeal and enhance its overall aesthetics. In this guide, we’ll delve into the best options for painting your brick house, ensuring it becomes a standout with its unique beauty and elegance!

    Understanding exterior brick surfaces

    Before proceeding right into exterior brick painting, it’s essential to familiarise yourself with the unique qualities of these surfaces. 

    Brick is known for its porous nature, making it susceptible to the rigours of weather. It absorbs moisture and expands and contracts with temperature changes. To ensure your paint job stands the test of time, choose a paint that can adhere well to this porous surface while also protecting it from the elements.

    The best type of paint for your exterior brick house

    A man painting the brick exterior of a house / Source: iStock

    There are different types of paint you can use for your brick exterior. Here are the most popular choices among the best paint for exterior brick houses:

    Elastodynamic paint

    This type is a top choice for exterior brick surfaces prone to movement and cracking. Its outstanding elasticity adapts to the brick’s shifts, forming a thick, flexible coating that bridges and seals cracks, preventing water infiltration. This is also why it excels in withstanding variable weather conditions, creating a watertight seal and offering up to a decade of protection due to its remarkable thickness. 

    However, this paint comes at a higher cost than other types and may require additional effort during application, like back-rolling when using a sprayer.

    Best recommended for: Older brick homes that may show signs of ageing.

    Acrylic latex paint

    Acrylic latex paint is a popular choice for brick exterior painting since it’s on the more affordable side. Its qualities ensure that any moisture remaining inside the porous brick material evaporates fast, lowering the risk of damage from repeated freeze-thaw cycles. 

    Since it usually only needs one coat to achieve the desired results, this paint is easy to apply. It is also quite long-lasting. However, one drawback of acrylic latex is that it may reveal more dirt, grime, and mildew than other paint finishes.

    Best recommended for: Homeowners seeking an economical and durable solution for their brick exteriors. This is also best for maintaining brick surfaces in regions with milder weather conditions where dirt and mildew buildup may be less of a concern.

    Limewash paint

    Want a washed-out, vintage appearance? This age-old, eco-friendly choice has been used for centuries, combining crushed limestone, natural pigments, and water to achieve its unique look. It has a chalky finish before application, and once applied to brick, it offers a charming, distressed look that can add character to your exterior brick wall. 

    Note that limewash paint can be more challenging to apply, requiring the help of a professional rather than doing it yourself.

    Best recommended for: Those who want to go for a vintage look and prioritise environmentally-friendly materials.

    Silicone masonry paint

    Not all masonry paint is breathable and waterproof. A special type is the silicone masonry paint, a variety that incorporates silicone resins in its composition. Like water-based masonry paint, it can be diluted and cleaned with water. 

    What sets silicone masonry paint apart are these added resins, making it water-repellent and one of the best breathable paints for exterior brick walls. This unique feature keeps exterior brick surfaces completely dry, contributing to exceptional durability with a lifespan of over 20 years.

    Best recommended for: Homeowners looking to maintain the longevity and appearance of their exterior brick surfaces. This is especially suitable for areas prone to heavy rain or high humidity.

    Enamel paint

    Enamel paint is a robust choice for brick wall painting, offering a glossy finish resistant to chipping and peeling over time. It also provides superior protection against UV rays and moisture, making it an excellent selection for outdoor surfaces. 

    Many brands offer high-temperature paints tailored for bricks, ensuring they endure extreme temperatures without fading.

    Best recommended for: Painting brick patios, garden walls, and any outdoor surfaces in need of enduring protection and a glossy finish.

    Considerations when choosing the best paint for exterior brick walls

    House terrace with white brick walls / Source: iStock

    Now that you have a diverse palette of options, think about these key factors when making your choice:

    • Weather resistance: Given Australia’s diverse weather conditions, choose paint that can withstand UV rays, heavy rain, and temperature fluctuations.
    • Breathability: Ensure your chosen paint allows moisture to escape, preventing it from becoming trapped within the walls and causing damage.
    • Colour options: Explore a wide range of hues to find the one that complements your home’s design and the surrounding environment.
    • Durability: Look for paint that can resist chipping, cracking, and fading, providing long-lasting protection.
    • Cost: While some paints may have a higher initial expense, their durability and longevity can lead to long-term savings. Evaluate your budget and factor in potential labour costs to make a well-informed decision.

    Best exterior paint colours for brick houses

    Ready to transform your brick house into a stunning, eye-catching masterpiece? These shades will make your brick home a head-turner:

    Timeless white

    You can never go wrong with a timeless colour. Painting our brick exterior white adds a clean and inviting touch to your home.

    White brick wall with hanging plants / Source: iStock

    Warm terracotta

    This colour exudes a Mediterranean vibe, giving your home that coastal villa look and feel.

    Cacti in pots against a brick wall / Source: iStock

    Contemporary grey

    This colour is a versatile contemporary option that pairs seamlessly with various architectural styles.

    A grey brick wall with window / Source: iStock

    Shades of blue

    You can aim for a cheery light blue or go for a bold and dramatic midnight blue. Either way, your home will stand out, day or night!

    A bright blue brick wall with a window / Source: iStock

    A fresh coat of paint can transform your home

    Choosing the best paint for your exterior brick can turn it from just okay to visually pleasing. By understanding the unique qualities of exterior brick surfaces and the various paint options available, you can breathe new life into your home exterior. 

    While you can do it yourself, reaching out to a professional painter can ensure that your house painting project is executed to perfection. They can help you choose the best paint type and the perfect colour that reflects your style and complements your surroundings. Transform your exterior brick into a stunning feature that will leave a lasting impression. 

    FAQs on exterior paint finishes

    How do you paint brick so it can breathe?

    Exterior brick should be painted with porous paint so that it can breathe. Use high-quality paint and apply a conditioner or primer first, followed by the breathable exterior paint for best results.

    Do you need a primer to paint the exterior brick?

    Whether you’re tackling older or newer brick, indoors or out, using a primer is a non-negotiable step for a job well done. The real trick is to ensure primer bonds with the brick, getting into all those nooks and crannies. The stronger that bond, the better your paint will stick, giving you a professional finish that lasts.

    What is the most popular colour to paint brick houses?

    The most frequently requested brick paint colour is white. It’s ideal for those who want their homes to look neat.

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