I am remodeling the bathroom in my 1961 house. I have gyprock lath walls that were covered with wallpaper that had been painted over. Upon removing the wallpaper there were patches of smooth paint/plaster that had orangey wallpaper glue left and parts of the wall that is powdery and white.

wall with patches of glue over mystery material

I've cleaned the glue off with water/baking soda, but the smooth patches don't want to come off and I'm worried that scraping will gouge the soft white parts.

wall with glue removed but where paint/plaster remains

Is this old paint? Some sort of veneer on the plaster?

Do I need to remove it to apply drywall mud and eventually primer and paint?

Also do I need a special primer for the soft white plaster areas?

  • That crack at the door corner is going to persist unless you open the wall up and bolster framing. That's one of the advantages of paper.
    – isherwood
    Aug 29, 2023 at 13:45
  • The most important part of a paint job is the prep work, so any effort you skimp on in prep will be time spent repainting that much sooner.
    – FreeMan
    Aug 29, 2023 at 14:00

1 Answer 1


If you have removed all the loose material, you are ready to skim or texture.

Drywall compound will stick to the surface as long as there isn't loose particulate.

Then prime and paint.

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