So you are ready to paint some part of your house. Congratulations! Painting the home is the primary way to help put your personal touch on your forever living space. However, when you take your first trip into Home Depot or Lowes, you may be overwhelmed at the variety of paint finishes. Here is a quick primer on the differences between the paint finishes and when to use which type.
Flat Paint Finishes
Flat finish (or, as it’s sometimes known matte finish) is the finish that has the lowest amount of shine. Flat paint is designed to not reflect light so it’s good for hiding cracks and small imperfections on your walls. Because it flows smoothly, it’s a great option for walls that have some texture to them. However, flat paint is difficult to keep clean so it’s best used in areas of lower traffic. Don’t plan on being happy with the results if you use it in your kitchen or bathroom.
Eggshell Paint Finishes
Eggshell finish (or satin finish) has a bit more of a luster than a flat finish but it doesn’t make your walls shiny. Eggshell is great for bathrooms, kitchens, kids’ rooms and areas where the traffic flow is higher because it resists stains well and can be wiped clean with a wet rag.
Semi-Gloss Paint Finishes
Semi-Gloss is a more durable paint than eggshell. As a result, it shows less wear and tear. However, as its name states, the paint is more reflective than flat or eggshell and will show imperfections very well when it is hit with light. Semi-gloss stands up the best out of all the paint finishes to water so it’s a good choice for bathrooms and kids’ rooms if the kids’ tend to make a mess. You can also use semi-gloss paint on doors, trims and furniture like end tables or coffee tables.
Gloss Paint Finishes
Gloss paint is the most light reflective paint available. As such, it should only be used for window and door trim (to increase the light reflectivity and overall light levels in the room). You can use it on furniture too because it dries with a hard and shiny finish.
So there it is. Hopefully this information will help you decide what is the best type of paint for your next home improvement project.