Originating in the mountains around Marrakesh, Tadelakt is an ancient Moroccan water-impermeable lime finish used in showers, baths, sinks and other wet areas.
The application process involves two thin coats of Marrakesh lime over a strong, textured lime base. The Tadelakt gets compressed with a wooden float and then polished with a smooth stone. Finally, the Tadelakt is soaked with a vegetable oil soap and stoned again in order to seal all pores and render the surface highly water resistant. The proteins of the oil soap combine with the curing lime to augment the water impermeability of the surface.
While the surface is water resistant, it remains vapor permeable. This means that any water that penetrates the surface can escape again safely as vapor through the wall surface. Mold resistant, cleanable, and free of grout lines, Tadelakt has a singular beauty. When wet, the wall shines like a mirror and is smooth as glass.
As I am based in Spain, I have close access to the authentic Marrakesh lime. While I favor using Marrakesh lime for Tadelakt projects, I am also able to create Tadelakt mixes from locally sourced lime and aggregates.
Based in Javea, Spain, Mano de Barro serves the entire Marina Alta, Costa Blanca region of Spain (and beyond!)