Moisture risk in building systems is one of the major concerns affecting the durability of building envelopes and indoor comfort. Surface waterproofing products are a common and simple methods to enhance the moisture performance of masonry buildings. However, the various chemical compositions of these products can lead to very different performance under exposure. This paper focus on the comparison and discussion of the different level of impact of surface waterproofing products with various chemical compositions on the performance of brick masonry substrate through a series of benchtests on small scale specimens to test water vapour transmission, hydrophobicity and liquid water absorption. Four different types of waterproofing products were selected, along with 3 brick types common in the 50s and 60s to be representative of the majority of the UK building stock. Results show that the combined outcome of the three tests is sufficient to identify the clearly the effectiveness of the products in improving waterproofing while ensuring vapour transmission. It also shows that it is essential to use specimens reproducing the masonry fabric rather than samples of the individual materials.