In my recent posts, I talked a lot about paint colors, but choosing the right finishes is equally important to reach the goal. Often different paint companies have different terms for their finishes. So, it might be confused and a little bit intiminated when you have to choose your paint colors. So, today I will share Here 5 tips to make the process easier:
- Understand the sheens: first of all, please don’t worry that you have to choose at least dozens of sheens from different brands . Most brands of paint come in several sheens, and both latex and oil-based paints are available in different sheen levels. Gloss sheens have the highest light-reflective characteristics. Next are semigloss sheens; then satin, eggshell, or low-lustre sheens; and then flat or matte sheens. So, general speaking, here are basic 6 sheens : flat, matte, satin, eggshell, semi-gloss and high-gloss. The lower the sheen, typically means the lower the cost per gallon. Since homes tend to have multiple bedrooms to paint, you can actually save a few bucks by choosing flat or matte paint for these rooms.
2. Decide finishes by how busy the traffic is in those spaces: rule of the thumb here is the higher the sheen, the higher the shine — and the higher the shine, the more durable it will be and the easier it can cleaned. Flat paint has no shine; high-gloss is all shine. In between are eggshell, satin, and semi-gloss, each with its own practical and decorative job to do. So I guess you get it, high gloss will be perfect for kitchen & bath areas.
- Practical application: kitchens, door, and window trim
- Durability: very high
Good for rooms where moisture, drips, and grease stains challenge walls. Also great for trim work that takes a lot of abuse.
- Practical application: kitchens, bathrooms, trim, chair rails
- Durability: high
Has a yummy luster that, despite the name, is often described as velvety. It’s easy to clean, making it excellent for high-traffic areas. Its biggest flaw is it reveals application flaws, such as roller or brush strokes. Touch-ups later can be tricky.
- Practical application: family rooms, foyers, hallways, kids’ bedrooms
- Durability: high
Between satin and flat on the sheen (and durability) scale is eggshell, so named because it’s essentially a flat (no-shine) finish with little luster, like a chicken’s egg. Eggshell covers wall imperfections well and is a great finish for gathering spaces that don’t get a lot of bumps and scuffs.
- Practical application: dining rooms, living rooms
- Durability: medium
Flat or Matte
fFat/matte soaks up, rather than reflects, light. It has the most pigment and will provide the most coverage, which translates to time and money savings. However, it’s tough to clean without taking paint off with the grime.
- Practical application: adults’ bedrooms and other interior rooms that won’t be roughed up by kids
- Durability: medium-low
3. Decide finishes by the conditions of the walls.
Glossy sheen will highlight any imperfections in the surface. Allocate yourself time to deep clean the wall, spackle any holes, and let the surface fully dry.
Eggshell is great for spaces that are lived-in but not quite as exposed to the messes and moisture frequently found in kitchens and bathrooms.
Satin hey’re also excellent at resisting mildew, dirt and stains (they can better withstand cleaning and light scrubbing) making them more suitable for frequently used spaces than their eggshell counterparts. Try this finish in hallways, children’s rooms and on woodwork that will need to withstand modest wear and tear.
Flat and Matte- great for hiding surface imperfections making walls look smooth. This finish, which cleans easily with a damp sponge.
4. Decide finishes by aesthetic:
The higher the sheen, the more vivid and rich your color will appear, making it ideal for deep, jewel-toned colors such as reds, forest greens and navy blues. Experts are partial to this finish for wood surfaces, such as trim, cabinets and doors, but only when blemishes are minimal as shinier surfaces make flaws more evident.
5. Open to the new technologies: there are new paints with new technologies. For example, Benjamin Moore just develops new matte finish which can be used in bathroom and super durable and easy to clean.
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