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Kinds of Paints – Which to Get and What to Expect
When you need to paint there are so many choices! Which type of paint to choose can be just as overwhelming as trying to decide on the color, as there are so many different types of paint to choose from. Here we will address the main types of paints: Flat, Matte, Satin, Semi-gloss, Gloss, High-gloss, and Latex.
Flat paint lacks shine and is harder to scrub dirt and dust off without rubbing the dirt in further, but if you are patching up defects, then it will be less likely noticeable where the patch up work was done once it dries because it does not reflect light like the glossier paints. It therefore does a good job of covering defects on the wall as well. It won’t show lines, cracks, or crevices near as easily. For this reason, flat paint is used highly on ceilings, not so much in high traffic areas where the wall will get dirty.
Matte paint has a little more shine than flat but not much. It can therefore be cleaned if needs be, but it won’t be as durable when scrubbing things off as the higher-gloss paints. Matte is a good choice if you need a somewhat scrubbable paint but you also have lots of blemishes on the wall that need to be hidden. It is not a good choice however if the walls are located in a high traffic area.
Satin paint has a little more shine than matte. It will not do quite as well hiding defects on the wall, but it is more scrubbable than matte paint, and therefore can be scrubbed, but only if it is a light scrubbing. Satin paint is a good choice if the walls aren’t in too bad of shape, and not located in a high traffic area, but may be touched.
Semi-gloss has more gloss (shine) in it than Satin. Semi-gloss lots of times is used on walls located in high traffic areas due to the ability of being highly scrubbable, meaning you can scrub dirt off without ruining the paint, or making the paint look dirty by the dirt actually rubbing into the paint as you try to scrub it off. However, semi-gloss paint will not hide blemishes near as well as the paints with less gloss.
Gloss paint is just how it sounds, glossy. It is indeed enough gloss in the paint to make it, well, glossy. You will notice the nice shine but with that shine will also reveal the defects on your wall. It will be highly scrubbable, but since it will reflect lots of light, the light will hit every crack, crevice, line, bump, and defect on the wall.
High-gloss paint is a gloss paint that is glossed to the max. High gloss paint, although highly durable and scrubbable, will reflect so much light that it will be busy for the eyes as every light reflection will be noticeable from every angle, and will therefore be nearly impossible to hide defects on the wall. In fact, not only will it not hide them, but it will make all defects very much more noticeable.
Latex paint is a glossy paint that also has a rubber-like consistency to it due to the acrylic nature in it. Because of its rubber-like properties, it will not stick well to already glossy finishes. You can get latex paint in semi-gloss, gloss, or high gloss. Therefore, you can choose a latex with, say, a semi-gloss finish, and therefore have the best of both worlds for a high traffic area; a paint that is highly scrubbable and yet, won’t reflect light near as much as the highly scrubbable gloss or high-gloss paints.
In summary, when choosing a paint that is right for your wall, you first need to determine if your wall is in a high traffic area. If so, you need one that is highly scrubbable and therefore, at least somewhat glossy. If you have lots of defects on the wall that you want hidden, you need one with the least amount of gloss as possible, just know it won’t be highly scrubbable (you won’t be able to clean it as well if needs be). If you have defects you want to cover up on the wall and it’s in a high traffic area, then a semi-gloss latex paint will be the best. The semi-gloss combined with the rubber base in the latex paint makes it highly scrubbable and yet, that same rubber base makes it not as light reflective either (not as likely to show blemishes), although it will still show more than the flat paint.
Categories: Wall Covering