Different types of wallpaper / wall coverings explained

types of wallpaper wall coverings

There are different types of wallpaper available, that give different types of surface finish. Available in the latest colors, textures, and patterns, wallpaper will never go out of style. When it comes to selecting your wallpaper, it’s important to know more than just the designs available. Research how it’s installed, removed, and how the different materials compare in terms of strength and quality.

 Textured (blown) vinyl 

  • Also known as blown vinyl, it delivers a textured finish with screen-printed or painted option. This type of wallpaper is easy to apply and remove, and is perfect for hanging on cracked walls or uneven surfaces. These are similar to the embossed wallpaper but the finish is vinyl plastic which gives it a tough finish.


  • This type of wallpaper is made with an imprinted raised pattern. Take a little extra care when hanging it so that you don’t flatten the pattern. They can be over painted; either at a later time when the pattern has become faded and requires a facelift, or from the time it is first hung.


  • Flock wallpapers are one of the oldest types of wallpaper used, the pattern consists of fibres which feel and look rather like velvet. Traditionally flock wallpapers have been widely hung in pubs, clubs, restaurants etc., but can be used in any home if used with taste.


  • A delicate type of wallpaper that is fashionable but expensive because it’s printed one roll at a time.

Paste the wall 

  • This type of wallpaper has a special backing that means you can paste the wall instead of the paper. It’s quick and easy to hang, and you can choose from a variety of textured and printed finishes.


  • These must not to be confused with Vinyl wallpapers described below. Washable wallpapers have a thin plastic transparent coating covering the pattern printed on to the base pulp paper. This coating gives them more resistant to stains and marks and allows them to be regularly wiped down with a damp cloth.

Standard wallpaper 

  • These machine-printed choices give you a wide range of designs at prices to suit all budgets.


  • Usually these consist of a pattern printed on to a thin skin of vinyl (plastic) with a paper backing behind. Vinyl papers are easy to hang and fairly easy to strip. They are quite tough and washable making them ideal for use in kitchens and bathrooms.


  • These are tougher than vinyl-coated wallpapers (described above) as the vinyl skin on the front of the base paper is thicker. Hanging Vinyl wallpaper usually involves pasting the wall and then hanging the wallpaper on to it. Stripping Vinyl wallpaper can be hard as the layer of vinyl makes them largely impervious to water. Vinyl wallpapers are tough, washable and ideal for kitchens and bathrooms.
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