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What are the different types of masonry primer?

Priming masonry before painting is a pivotal step if you want to achieve a perfect standard of finish. But if you have just started looking for masonry primer then you may be overwhelmed by the sheer volume of different types of masonry primer on the market, what do they all do? Luckily for you, we have done the research and broken all of the different types of masonry primer down into easy to understand groups, so let’s get cracking!

Types of masonry primer

Below I have gathered together a quick snapshot of all the different types of masonry primer available. I have tried to get them all but may well have missed one (or more!), if there is one I have missed then feel free to email me at and I will add it to the list.

Alkali-resistant primer

This primer is designed to stops salts from showing through your paint. Lots of building materials such as mortar and plaster contain salts, when they get wet they can start to soak through you finish. This leads to bit white spots and marks appearing on your paint. You will probably have seen this all over the place on masonry walls.

Salt on bricks, this is what alkali resistant primer stops
Salt on bricks, this is what alkali resistant primer stops

Once this primer has been allowed to fully dry it can be painted over with pretty much any type of masonry paint, so you can let your creative side show.

Stabilising Primer

This masonry primer is designed to be used on flaky and chalky surfaces. The primer helps to stabilise the surface and stop it from flaking. This then creates a much more stable surface for you to paint onto.

Water Repellent Primer

This primer can be used to effectively create a weather block. It stops water from soaking through all different types of masonry. Can be used in places where water ingress is an issue.

Water repellent primers are specially formulated to prevent water penetration on all mineral substrates such as brick, stone, concrete, pebble-dashed and rendering.

Dirt Repellent Sealer

Rather than being a primer, this goes on top of the masonry paint. The sealer then does what it sounds like, it helps to stop dirt from sticking to the masonry paint.

It is a protective coating, which minimises dirt retention on exterior masonry coatings

Quick Drying Primer

This is a special masonry primer that is designed to dry as fast as possible. Very useful for circumstances where the weather can change quickly.

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