You might think that all paint finishes are basically the same, but that’s not true. In fact, there are a lot of different types of paint finishes, and each one can give your room a completely different look and feel.
So how do you pick the right paint finish for your room? It can be tricky, but I'm here to help. I’m breaking down all the different types of paint finishes and explaining what each one looks like and how it should be used.
Once you know which type of paint finish is right for your room, you'll be ready to tackle your next room makeover project!
Flat Paint Is Made for Living Rooms, Bedrooms, and Ceilings
In general, flat paints provide a smooth and subtle finish that looks best in living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms, and on ceilings. A flat sheen may also be used in family rooms and corridors. It hides flaws while diffusing light and is perfect for low-traffic areas because it provides a uniform appearance.
Surface preparation is not required for a flat finish, as it does not reflect light directly, making any flaws or faults in the walls or ceilings less apparent.
While it is the easiest option for touch-ups, it is the most difficult to clean. However, some more recent products have a scrubbable surface that makes cleaning rooms with this type of paint easier than with previous versions.
Matte Paint Is Perfect for the Family Areas
Matte paint is perfect for family areas, such as family rooms, hallways, and dining rooms, because it creates a calm and relaxing atmosphere. It's also great for hiding any imperfections in the walls, so if your walls are not in great condition, matte paint is a good option.
One downside to matte paint is that it can be difficult to clean — so if you're looking for a paint finish that's easy to keep clean, matte might not be the best option.
Semi-Gloss Paint Is Ideal for the Bathroom and Other High-Trafficked Rooms
If you're looking for a paint finish that's easy to clean, semi-gloss is the way to go. This type of paint finish is perfect for high-trafficked rooms like the bathroom because it's easy to wipe down and keep clean.
Semi-gloss paint also has a high sheen, which can add some brightness to a room and make it look more polished. However, keep in mind that this finish can also show every imperfection in the walls, so if your walls are not in great condition, you might want to choose a different type of paint finish.
Eggshell Paint Is for Foyers, Kitchens, and Trim
If you're looking for a paint finish that's somewhere in between matte and semi-gloss, eggshell is a good option. This type of paint finish has a low sheen, which gives it just a hint of shine.
Eggshell paint is perfect for foyers, kitchens, and trim because it's easy to clean but doesn't show every imperfection.
An eggshell finish, because it neither reflects nor absorbs light, is typically the most accurate. Your walls will have a subtle luster without being overly glossy.
Satin is Great for Play Areas and Laundry Rooms
If you're looking for a paint finish that's easy to clean and has a bit more shine than eggshell, satin is the way to go. This type of paint finish is perfect for play areas and laundry rooms because it can withstand some wear and tear. The main difference between satin compared to a flat or eggshell sheen is that it can be wiped clean, making it perfect for indoor or outdoor use.
Satin is a wonderful choice for any room that sees a little more activity, such as family rooms, playrooms, laundry rooms, kitchens, dining rooms, and children's bedrooms, because it readily absorbs moisture.
This paint may be used in a variety of rooms, including bedrooms and trim, shutters, and doors. Another advantage of satin sheen is that it resists mildew, dirt, and stains effectively. Cleaning satin sheen is easier than cleaning flat or eggshell sheen paints. All you have to do is give the surface a light scrubbing with a soft cloth.
Knowing how to pick the right paint finish is crucial in creating the perfect space. The type of paint finish you choose will depend on the room you're painting, as well as your personal preference. No matter what type of paint finish you choose, be sure to test it out in a small area first to see how it looks and feels before making a commitment.