Do you want to transform the look and feel of your home? Painting is a quick and cost-effective way to achieve your desired result. But you have to choose the right paint finish as it can make a big difference in the final look of your room. 

In this guide to paint finishes, we’ll walk you through the basics so you can achieve a professional result. 

The first step: preparing the surface

Before painting, it’s vital to lay a solid foundation by prepping your painting surface. Adequate surface preparation is critical to guaranteeing that your paint adheres properly and delivers a polished, professional finish you can be proud of.

So, begin by cleaning your walls well to remove any dust, dirt, grease, and imperfections that could affect the final result. Then, patch up any holes or cracks and sand the surface. Finally, apply a coat or two of primer for a durable, fresh paint job. 

Choosing the right paint finish: common paint finishes 

The finish you choose will significantly influence the appearance and durability of your freshly painted surfaces. Let’s break down the various common finishes: 

Flat finish

The flat finish boasts a complete absence of shine, making it an excellent choice for concealing imperfections on your walls and ceilings. 

It’s particularly well-suited for low-traffic areas, although it’s important to note that it may not be as washable as other finishes.

Eggshell finish

This offers a subtle sheen and strikes a balance between washability and the ability to hide minor flaws. This effect makes it a versatile choice for spaces like living rooms and bedrooms, where you want both aesthetic appeal and practicality.

Semi-gloss finish

If you’re looking for a finish with noticeable shine and high washability, semi-gloss is the way to go. It’s an ideal option for high-traffic areas such as kitchens and bathrooms and for adding a touch of elegance to trim and doors.

Matte finish

A matte finish has low reflective properties and hides imperfections well. It also has a low to medium durability level and is a good option for adult bedrooms.

Satin finish

Satin finishes have a gentle shine and offer a warm, smooth appearance. They are durable and easy to clean, making them ideal for areas like hallways, kitchens, and children’s rooms. Satin finishes are suitable in areas where you want a mix of durability and style. 

Oil-based paint vs. latex-based paint

When it comes to the type of paint, you’ll often be faced with a choice between oil-based and latex-based (water-based) options. 

Oil-based paints are popular for their durability and ability to provide a smooth, glossy finish. However, they also come with a few trade-offs, such as a strong odor, a longer drying time, and the need for solvents for cleanup.

In contrast, latex-based paint dries more quickly and emits a milder odor. It is popular for most interior painting projects due to its user-friendly characteristics.

Choosing the right paint finish: factors to consider

You now understand the unique qualities of flat, eggshell, satin, semi-gloss, and matte finishes. But you have to consider some factors such as:

  • Aesthetics
  • The function of the room
  • Condition of the surface
  • Lighting
  • Maintenance

Do you want a finish that’s easy to clean? Are you painting high-traffic spaces? Do you prefer a cozy, warm feel or vibrant appearance? Is there adequate natural lighting in the room? Knowing the answers to these questions will enable you to pick a finish that works best for you. 

Transform your space with Stirling Painting

If you are finding it challenging to select the right paint finish for your home, contact us for a free estimate. Whether you’re aiming for a cozy or sleek, modern look, or painting your bathroom or living room, we’ll guide you in selecting a finish that transforms your space into a work of art.