The 5 Types of Wall Paint and How to Pick The Right One

Choosing the ideal colour for your walls is not the only thing you need to consider when deciding what paint to use. With such a wide variety of products out there, it can be confusing and difficult to pick the right one for your project. The type of paint is just as important as the colour and can have a huge impact on the character of the room. To avoid potentially time-consuming and expensive mistakes, read on to find out about each type of paint.

Water-based Paint

The majority of wall paint types you will find on the market today are water-based. However, the oil-based products remain the most popular option for demanding surfaces such as floors, furniture and glossy woodwork. Water-based or acrylic paint has several advantages such as low levels of toxic emissions (VOCs), elastic finish resistant to cracking and easy maintenance. Cleaning this type of paint requires only soapy, warm water. Water-based finish provides more stable colour over time without getting yellowish.

If you are switching to acrylic paint, there are certain things you need to keep in mind. If the surface was previously treated with an oil-based product, the new coat of paint may not stick. Cleaning efficiently and thoroughly the surface and roughening it with a smooth grit sandpaper beforehand is necessary to prevent the peeling of the new coat.

Oil-based Paint

Although oil –based paints have the edge over the water-based types for certain projects, it is considered less safe. The reason is that it contains organic solvents that release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and pollute the indoor air. Oil-based paint is traditionally more preferred because it offers attractive gloss, good levelling and a durable finish. The downside is that it takes longer to dry. To wash the paint, you need specific cleaners such as turpentine or paint thinner. Luckily, you don’t need to choose between quality results, there are now water-based products that behave just like the oil-based options.

Paint Finishes

The products vary not only in terms of their content, but also in the type of paint finish. Some paints absorb light, while others reflect it, creating different looks. The sheen levels are important for adding texture to your place or to cover up flaws in your interior.

Matte Paint

The 5 Types of Wall Paint and How to Pick The Right OneMatte paint is perceived as the standard sheen for walls and is great for hiding imperfections in ceilings and walls. It provides great depth of colour and minimum reflectivity. The paint has a beautiful velvety finish and creates a smooth, subtle look. The drawback is that matte paint holds dirt, making the cleaning of this product quite challenging.

Satin and Eggshell Paint

Satin paint offers a silky finish and pearl-like sheen. It is great for high-traffic areas such as the living room and the kitchen because it stands up well to washing. Egg-shell finish is usually used for decorative purposes.

Semi-gloss and Gloss Paints

As the name suggests, these paint finishes reflect the most light, offering gorgeous bright sheen. These wall paints are exceptionally durable and can withstand multiple cleanings. They are suitable for mouldings, baseboards and doors, because of their durability. Semi-gloss and gloss paints can add a statement to the decor, but they can also highlight certain imperfections.

For more versatile and interesting looks, you can mix different finishes. Use sheen gloss on the accent wall and leave the rest of the room matte. It depends on the type of atmosphere you want to create in your home.

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