Different Types of Paint Finishes and Why You Need to Know Them

paint finishesPicking the perfect paint color can be daunting. Picking the right finish is a whole other step in your project. The final look of the job is directly tied to the finish you choose. Here’s the low down on paint finishes: the pros and cons of flat, low luster and gloss.

Paint finishes come in three categories: flat, low-luster and gloss. To make the best choice for your project, you’ll need to look at the lighting in your room, traffic and usage of the room and your personal preference.

When painting, choosing the perfect color is only the first step. Picking the right finish is another key ingredient in determining how your final product will look and wear. How to choose? Read on to discover the pros and cons.

Flat Finish

To get the velvety wall finish with a forgiving finish, choosing flat is the best choice. It will cover unevenness, patches and texture. Flat finishes do not provide much when it comes to durability. It will need to be cleaned very infrequently and very carefully. Vigorous scrubbing will cause the paint to lose its finish and create patchy spots.

Using flat paint is best suited for ceilings which tend to have flaws in them. Accent walls and low traffic rooms where cleaning is infrequent are perfect for it too.

Low Luster Finish

Low luster finishes mix the durability of gloss with the color of flat. The finish looks like a matte when you look directly at it, but from an angle shows a slight sheen. Preparation and a good primer on the wall will be important, since the finish will show imperfections, especially in direct light.

Putting low-luster paint on walls is best used in living rooms, bedrooms and dining rooms, where there is little traffic and wear and tear on the walls.

Gloss or Semigloss Finish

This finish is known for its durability when it comes to cleaning, humidity and stains. Because it reflects life, it enhances any minor flaws in the wall. Painting and preparation must be done to create a good finish. Once it’s applied, the finish will last with a good sheen that stands up to cleaning.

Since the finish is made for cleaning up messes, it’s best suited to mess-prone rooms like bathrooms, kitchens, mudrooms, halls, doors and baseboards.

Still not entirely sure where to put what finish? Call our experts for help or a free in home estimate.