Let’s talk about paint. I love the power of paint and the transformation it alone can make…but what about sheens? I get this question a lot, “what sheen should I use on my ___.” Whether it’s the ceiling, baseboards, walls, doors, or kitchen cabinets, there are in fact some suggestions as to what paint sheen you should use. So let’s dive in!
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There are 5 different sheens ranging from matte to glossy – flat, eggshell, satin, semi-gloss, and high gloss.
FLAT Flat is…flat! It absorbs light giving it a matte finish and it hides imperfections incredibly well. The downfall to flat paint is that it’s difficult to clean. Scuffs and markings show up easily and often cannot be wiped off which means you’ll need to touch up paint periodically. Flat is recommended for ceilings.
EGGSHELL Eggshell is flat’s better cousin. As far as appearances go, it looks much the same as flat without the cleaning disadvantages. It wipes easily and still has a low sheen making imperfections on the wall less visible. Eggshell is recommended for most interior walls (except the bathroom).
SATIN Satin paint has a beautiful subtle sheen! As far as durability goes, scuffs can be wiped off easily and it can withstand regular cleaning. Satin reflects light and because of that it will show imperfections like divots and patches more than flatter paints. Satin is my go-to sheen for bathroom walls, interior doors, trim, baseboards, and exterior walls.
Semi-gloss paint is great for frequently cleaned areas and rooms that deal with excess moisture. It’s highly durable and has a semi-high level of shine. Semi-gloss is not as commonly used because of its glossy finish and its ability to highlight imperfections. However, if you take the time to ensure that your surface is perfectly smooth first, it can provide a beautiful luster. Semi-gloss paints can be used on interior doors, trim, baseboards, cabinets, and exterior doors.
Hello shiny! High gloss paint should be used just for specialty projects. It reflects a high level of light creating somewhat of a glam mirroring effect. It can be absolutely stunning when used strategically, but you really gotta make sure that the surface is perfect before you paint! High gloss can be used on interior doors, trim, baseboards, and exterior doors.