You’ve decided which room to paint. You’ve picked the colour you love. Now you’re excited and read to roll (so-to-speak)! But wait? There’s different finishes and sheens? Which one do you choose and why and where?
The finish is almost as important as the colour you’ve chose and often tends to get overlooked. Some finishes are easier to clean. Others draw attention to every imperfection on the wall. This blog will attempt to help you in the right direction and make and educated choice…
In essence, there are 5 basic finishes/sheens to choose from.
1. Flat/Matte Paint Finish
Flat and matte finishes are frequently used in the construction industry because this finish is fairly forgiving and excellent for hiding imperfections. If your goal is to cover up scratches and wall damage, this is a great choice.
Flat paint finishes are also known to absorb dirt, so it’s usually not a great option for kitchen, kid’s rooms, or high traffic areas.
2. Eggshell Paint Finish
Eggshell is a great option for almost any room. It has a soft look of, you guessed it, an eggshell. While the finish is low gloss, it’s more reflective than flat/matte paint and because of its slightly higher sheen, it’s also easier to clean and more durable.
An eggshell finish is a good option for family rooms, bedrooms, hallways, and entryways and is good at resisting stains and fingerprints.
3. Satin Paint Finish
The most commonly used of the five finishes, Satin reflects more light than eggshell and flat and is good for high-traffic areas like halls and kids’ rooms.
Since it’s more reflective, it’s also more durable to withstand dirt, grime and mildew, therefore, much easier to clean and keep clean.
4. Semi-gloss Finish
Even more reflective than satin, Semi-gloss gives rooms a slightly shiny look. This can make darker rooms brighter, especially when used in light tones like white, cream and other neutrals. The challenge… the paint will end up showing every tiny imperfection in your wall so it’s usually recommended to hire a professional when you want to go this route.
While the glossy surface shows more imperfections, it’s good for high-humidity rooms like bathrooms because it resists moisture and mildew. Easy to clean, semi-gloss makes a good option for trim and doors.
5. High Gloss Finish
High-gloss finishes are extremely low-maintenance. They have excellent resistance to stains and moisture and really easy to keep clean. However, all that shiny goodness means that the imperfections on your wall are likely to be extremely more visible.
Since it’s ever so easy to clean, high-gloss finishes are awesome for interior doors and cabinets that tend to get covered with dirty fingerprints. Oh, it’s great from trim as well!
So, in a nutshell, here’s a breakdown of where to use the different finishes and when.
- Flat paint – living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms or offices – any place you want minimal light reflected
- Eggshell – any room in the house, but usually not kitchens and bathrooms
- Satin – pretty much used in any room
- Semi-gloss – great in high-humidity areas like kitchens and bathrooms. It also works excellent on doors and trim
- High-gloss – used primarily on doors and trim, but can be use to achieve a high impact, mirror-like appearance on walls
Hopefully this has given you some food for thought and remember, these are only guidelines. You have the creative license to make your space amazing whatever finish you decide on!
Thanks for visiting Alpha Painting Canada. Check us out next issue when we’ll be discussing some more helpful tips and info!