tuber general appearance is a very important trait for potato breeding, once it affects consumer acceptance of in natura products. among appearance components the tuber coloration and smooth are very important. the objective of this work was to investigate the expected selection response for traits related to skin quality (smooth and coloration) and tuber appearance in three potato families. the experiments were performed in the experimental field of embrapa clima temperado during the spring of 2004 and 2005, using three families at second and third clonal generations, respectively. the traits smooth, skin coloration and tuber general appearance in the tubers were evaluated. data was analyzed statistically according to the model reml/blup, in way to distinguish fixed and aleatory effects and comparing values among the families, correlation between traits, heritability index and gain of selection. it can be verified that, for the development of superior potato populations regarding skin quality, the inclusion of parents bearing flat and clear skin is necessary. the traits smoothness and tuber coloration are correlated with the tuber general appearance, but this trait has lower heritability than its components.