If you want to freshen up your home and increase its value, repainting the walls can be a simple and effective solution. However, before you choose a paint colour, it's essential to consider the finish that would be the most suitable for each room. There are six types of paint finishes: flat, matte, eggshell, satin, semi-gloss, and gloss, and they all have unique characteristics, such as sheen and durability. Let's dive into the details of each finish.
Flat finish is a non-reflective paint that has no sheen at all. It's an excellent choice for concealing imperfections, bumps, holes, and scratches on any surface. However, it has low durability and is non-moisture resistant, making it unsuitable for high-traffic areas like the kitchen, bathroom, and bedrooms. It's perfect for ceilings and low-traffic rooms that have a lot of natural light, formal dining rooms, and office walls.
Matte finish has a subtle, low-lustre, and smooth appearance. It's similar to the flat finish but with slightly more sheen. It provides maximum pigment and coverage, which makes it perfect for hiding imperfections. However, it's prone to holding dirt and is challenging to clean. It's an excellent choice for low-to-moderate traffic areas, such as adult bedroom walls, living and dining room walls, and ceilings.
Eggshell finish is a popular paint finish that has a soft lustre, making a room look brighter. It reflects more light than flat and matte finishes and is more resistant to dirt, stains, and scuffs. It's ideal for medium-traffic rooms like entryways, hallways, family rooms, living rooms, and bedrooms. However, it can be difficult to touch up.
Satin finish is a versatile paint finish that can be used indoors and outdoors. It provides a soft sheen, resists fading and mildew, and is easy to clean. It has a higher gloss than eggshell and is ideal for moderate-to-high-traffic areas and those that have some exposure to moisture, like kids' bedrooms, playrooms, home offices, kitchens, baths, laundry rooms, and outdoor areas such as siding, trim, and shutters.
Semi-gloss finish has more shine and a sleek look than satin. It's perfect for high-traffic areas and those that are frequently touched because of its high durability. It's resistant to mildew, moisture, and wear, making it ideal for walls that are prone to drips, grease, and stains. However, it's more reflective and shows blemishes and scratches more clearly than other finishes. It's ideal for bathrooms, laundry rooms, kitchen cabinets, doors, and wall trim.
Gloss finish is the hardest, ultra-shiny, and most reflective among the finishes. It provides a glass-like appearance and is the most durable and easiest to clean. It's ideal for surfaces that are often touched like cabinets, trim, and doors. However, it highlights imperfections on walls, making it unsuitable for interior walls.
Choosing the right paint finish is just as important as choosing the right colour. Each finish has unique properties that make it more suitable for certain rooms and surfaces than others. Consider the room's traffic and exposure to moisture before choosing the finish, and don't forget that touch-up can be challenging with certain finishes.