Wallpaper is a quick and easy way to add a punch of style to an otherwise boring wall and the rise of removable wallpaper has made it that much easier — especially if you’re renting and don’t exactly want to invest hundreds of dollars into a space you’re not planning to set roots in.
“Being able to reliably reuse a roll of wallpaper sets it apart from most other peel and stick wallpaper and allows a lot of flexibility in how and where it can be used, even seasonally, so there is little waste in the value of the purchase,” explains Ashley Spencer, design expert and principal artist at Casart Coverings Wallpaper.
Whether you’re an expert home decorator or you’re shy to start such a bold project, we’re laying out exactly how to shop for, apply and eventually reapply removable wallpaper in order to get the most bang for your buck.
What to Know Before You Buy Wallpaper
Shopping for wallpaper can be a daunting experience — especially if it’s your first time investing in the stuff. Amateurs and seasoned wallpaper experts alike should look to specific types of paper for a more professional and long-lasting look (even more so if you’re hoping to remove and reapply the same wallpaper down the road).
“The best reusable wallpaper characteristics will involve something heavier and thicker, hotel-quality, vinyl or synthetic fabric for durability, rather than the less expensive, lighter weight, contact-paper-like versions on the market,” explains Spencer.
It’s also important to keep in mind that the larger or bolder the print, the more difficult it will be to get the patterns to properly line up on the wall. This isn’t to say that you should forego those trendy banana leaves or flamingo prints if you have your heart set on them, but be aware that lining up large prints can be much more time consuming and will waste more paper.
How to Calculate the Amount of Wallpaper You Need to Buy
Calculating the amount of wallpaper you need to buy is pretty easy as long as you’re willing to pull out a tape measure and do some quick math. There are also wallpaper calculators out there if you’re worried about getting your math right.
- Measure the height and length of the wall: Grab your tape measure and and extend it from one side of the wall to the other, then from the floor to the ceiling. Be sure to round up so you have a little extra paper to work with.
- Multiply the width and the height of the walls: This will give you the total square footage that you’ll need to cover.
- Convert your wall measurements into feet: Most wallpaper brands will label their rolls by feet rather than inches or centimeters. Purchase the total number of rolls you’ll need to cover your total square footage — but consider buying 20-30% more than you need in order to account for pattern repeat if you’re shopping for a print.
How Much Should You Be Spending on Wallpaper?
Wallpaper prices range significantly, but you really don’t need to spend all that much in order to achieve the look you’re after. Higher-end rolls can cost you hundreds of dollars per roll but most removable sheets are much more comfortably priced, usually around $20-$30 per roll.
Where Are the Best Places to Buy Wallpaper?
You’ll find removable wallpaper in most home improvement and lifestyle retailers but there are certain spots we recommend checking out that’ll ensure both quality, on-trend, and affordable rolls.
- Amazon: Amazon has a huge variety of prints at various price points and quality levels, but it might be worth pursuing if you’re hoping for quick delivery and easy returns.
- Minted: This removable wall mural brand is slightly more expensive than the rest, but it might be worth it if you’re nervous about lining up a bold pattern as every artwork is made to measure and comes in just one large sheet.
- Rifle Paper Co: You might be familiar with Rifle Paper Co. already for its broad selection of stationary products, but the lifestyle site recently launched a collection of colorful wallpapers with the same modern flair it’s known for.
- CB2: The sister store to Crate & Barrel is packed with trendy and sophisticated removable wallpaper prints that are highly affordable but still look super luxurious.
Expert-Approved Tips on How to Apply Wallpaper
Pasting up wallpaper for the first time can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Follow these steps for the best possible outcome (and as little frustration and wasted time and paper as possible!).
- Take your time: In fact, go really slow. “Sure, it’s OK to peel and re-stick as you go along, but you’re only prolonging the process even further by doing so,” says Jack Miller, home improvement expert and founder of “How I Get Rid Of.” “It’s much better to tread lightly than to move quicker but constantly stumble and repeat along the way.”
- Pick the right wall: Not all walls are created equal, and not all removable wallpapers will work on them. “Ideally, you’d want a smooth wall that’s been primed with satin or semi-gloss paint. Rougher surfaces like matte finishes may be less adhesive and feasible,” says Miller.
- Use light heating for easier removal: If you still plan on recycling your wallpaper, you’ll need to take it down as carefully as possible. “One way to do so is by applying some light heat from a blow dryer. This will help loosen the adhesion from the wallpaper,” suggests Miller.
- Save the paper backing: “The easiest, most efficient way to reuse wallpaper is to save the backing sheet, rolling it up and storing it after the wallcovering is installed,” says Spencer. “When you’re ready to remove it, simply align the shiny side of the backing sheet with the top corners of the wallcovering, then roll the wallcovering down onto the backing sheet as you roll it down off the wall.”
Best Removable Wallpapers on the Market
Looking for a great removable wallpaper (that is also super affordable)? Below, we’ve rounded up a selection of high-quality and easy-to-apply removable wallpaper that won’t break the bank.
Tempaper Pink Botanical Havana Palm
This bright and tropical removable wallpaper was inspired by Miami Beach’s Art Deco movement and can be a great option for anyone looking for a bold wallcover but who doesn’t want to waste too much paper trying to line up a larger print.
$39.99 $34.99 at Amazon.com
HaokHome Modern Stripe Peel and Stick Wallpaper
This modern reusable wallpaper can easily be used to create a more subtle statement wall, but it can just as easily be used as a backsplash for a plain bookshelf or as contact paper inside of kitchen drawers. The neutral print is going to be super easy to line up and apply, too.
$8.93 at Amazon.com
White Gray Wood Self-Adhesive Removable Wallpaper
This modern wood removable wallpaper is going to be your best bet when it comes to price point and ease of application. The super affordable paper is self-adhesive, which is great, but the wood grain is also extremely forgiving if you accidentally misalign your paper by a hair or two.
$9.99 $6.99 at Amazon.com
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