Strength-wise, POP is inferior to gypsum plasterboard. Gypsum boards’ hydrophobic qualities are a key factor in their widespread usage for fake ceilings. The false ceiling made of gypsum plasterboard provides excellent design versatility. Check out the detailed comparison between Gypsum vs POP.

Plain, boring ceilings are passé. If you’re doing up your home interior, it isn’t quite complete unless you have a beautifully designed false ceiling in place!

Not only do false ceilings elevate the aesthetics of your home, but they also help to conceal unsightly electrical wiring and AC ducting and insulate against noise.

Two of the most popular material choices for false ceilings are Plaster of Paris (POP) and Gypsum. However, there is an ongoing contention on Gypsum vs POP as to which is the better false ceiling material.

This guide will help you understand the pros and cons of each so you can finally decide between POP vs Gypsum false ceiling.

Gypsum Board

Gypsum boards, also known as Plasterboards, are factory-manufactured boards of hydrated Calcium Sulphate that are used for false ceilings.

Available in thicknesses of 9, 12 and 15 mm, these boards are usually manufactured in sizes of 4 x 6 feet, 4 x 8 feet and 4 x 10 feet.

Easy to install, they are cut to the sizes required and fitted on a metal framework that is suspended from the ceiling. Gypsum boards are used for false ceilings and also as partition walls in office interiors.

gypsum board ceiling

Plaster of Paris: What It Is, and How It’s Used

Plaster of Paris, commonly known as POP, is basically dehydrated gypsum, or Calcium Sulphate, available in powdered form.

When the dry powder is mixed with water, it rehydrates and sets in the shape of the mould into hard gypsum again. The paste starts to set in around ten minutes and hardens in the form of interlocking crystals to attain strength and hardness.

To make a POP false ceiling, the paste is applied on a chicken mesh which is moulded to the desired shape and then dried till it achieves maximum hardness. POP ceilings are seamless and mouldable and can fit awkward corners perfectly.

Read More: Plaster of Paris Design Guides for Your Home

difference between gypsum and POP

Gypsum Plaster vs Pop: Comparision of the Advantages and Disadvantages

Since both gypsum boards and POP are essentially composed of gypsum, they have several common features. Both are lightweight, heat-insulating, and fire-resistant.

However, both materials also have their strengths and drawbacks. Hence, when deciding over gypsum vs pop ceiling, you’ll have to analyse the difference between plaster of Paris and gypsum carefully.

Difference between Gypsum and POP

Gypsum False Ceiling POP False Ceiling
Gypsum Vs PoP: Cost
  • More expensive than POP
  • Typically 25% cheaper than Gypsum board
Gypsum Vs PoP: Wastage
  • Gypsum boards come in specified sizes, and there can be a lot of wastage depending on the dimensions of the room.
  • Minimal wastage as you can mix only the right amount of powder needed
Gypsum Vs PoP: Mouldability
  • Cannot be moulded as the board is flat. Any cornices have to be made of POP.
  • Can be moulded for cornices, shaped and curved as required
Gypsum Vs PoP: Durability
  • Lasts for years
  • Lasts for years
Gypsum Vs PoP: Cracks
  • The flat surface does not crack easily
  • Can crack depending on the workmanship and mix of the POP
Gypsum Vs PoP: Finishing
  • Has joints that need to be finished  using POP slurry
  • Joints are seamless
Gypsum Vs PoP: Time for installation
  • Very quick, as boards are manufactured in the factory and are assembled and finished at the site
  • As POP ceilings are installed in situ, the process is laborious, takes time and is messy
Gypsum Vs PoP: Labour
  • Semi-skilled labour can do this work
  • Skilled craftsmen are needed to make sure that the mix is in the perfect ratio and is applied correctly
Gypsum Vs PoP: Design and aesthetics
  • Flowing curved ceilings are a little difficult to execute, though not impossible
  • Has to be done with a mixture of Gypsum and POP
  • Ceilings can take any form and shape
  • Intricate designs are easily executed.
Gypsum Vs PoP: Repairs
  • It is not easy to accommodate repairs
  • As the boards are fixed on a metal framework, the entire board has to be reinstalled in case of repairs
  • Repairs are very easy, and just a small portion of the ceiling can be cut into and redone as required.
Gypsum Vs PoP: Thermal properties
  • Fire retardant and heat insulating
  • Fire retardant and heat insulating

gypsum vs pop ceiling installation

Gypsum or POP: Which Is Better?

If you are planning a dropped ceiling that follows a straight-line design, and if you are short on time (and don’t mind paying a little extra), then a Gypsum ceiling is the better option for you.

However, if you would like to get a unique ceiling design that incorporates flowing lines and curves, and don’t mind spending some extra time on achieving the look you want, then POP ceiling would be the apt choice, winning the debate of Gypsum vs POP based on aesthetics.

Keep in mind that even with a ceiling that is largely made of gypsum board, by incorporating sections of POP, you can get the best of both styles!

Design Tips for Perfect  False Ceilings

Here are some additional tips to keep in mind when planning the false ceiling to get a beautiful home interior.

  • A false ceiling design can make your room claustrophobic if you have a low ceiling. So first, ensure there is enough height between your ceiling and the floor.
  • Plan your lighting in advance so you can mould the ceiling design accordingly.
  • Go for designs with straight lines and minimum frills for small spaces. But if you have a large area, you can experiment with various shapes and textures to create a unique ceiling.
  • If you already have a ceiling design, you can introduce false ceilings only in some parts. It will make your room more spacious, even with the addition of a new design feature.

design tips for perfect  false ceilings


There is no right answer to the debate of Gypsum vs POP – it all depends on your needs and requirements. Read this handy guide to make the best choice for your home.

Are you in search of expert opinion and guidance related to installing a false ceiling in your home? The experts at HomeLane are always happy to help! Contact us to learn more!


1. Which Is Better, Pop or Gypsum?

There is no one right choice for the gypsum vs Plaster of Paris comparison.

Go for a gypsum board if you’re planning a dropped ceiling with a straight-line design. They are much easier to install than POP.

But if you want to give an intricate design to your ceilings with cornices and curves, opt for the easily moldable POP. They are also much cheaper than gypsum boards, though a skilled craftsman is required to finish a POP design perfectly.

2. Which Is Better, Gypsum or PVC?

PVC ceiling materials are made of plastic, so they are lightweight and easy to trim and install. Unlike POP or gypsum, they are less likely to get brittle, making them very durable.

If you don’t mind the look of plastic instead of concrete, you can go for the affordable PVC ceiling. Their drawback, however, is that they are not heat resistant. So you can only go for energy-efficient LED lights with this design.


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