(Thanks to How-To Magazine)
Painting your home inside or out requires careful planning and choosing how your paint finish is going to look is one of the key fundamentals of any painting project.
Gloss paints have a highly reflective smooth surface and can help to reflect light and add a touch of class to surfaces. Solvent borne gloss paints are generally the toughest, most durable and most stain-resistant type of paint meaning you will benefit from a high polish finish that will last.
Gloss paints are easier to clean than paints with less surface smoothness making them ideal for areas exposed to heavy traffic or heavy use, especially where fingerprints, grease or grime are common.
Some areas where gloss paints are useful include kitchen, bathroom and laundry room walls; cabinets; banisters; doorways; windowsills and frames; and interior trim. Certain gloss paints can also be used on furniture.
The highly reflective appearance of gloss paints tend to highlight surface imperfections, making it essential to have a well prepared surface prior to applying. If walls or woodwork are either marred or irregular, it may be best to select paint with less sheen.
Semi-gloss paints, as the name suggests, have a slightly glossy appearance that is not as highly reflective as that of gloss paints. These types of finishes offer good stain resistance and are easy to clean, so they are especially popular among families with young children.
Paints with a semi-gloss appearance are excellent for use on many of the same areas as gloss paints. They are ideal for walls and woodwork which are subject to wear, including: kitchens and bathrooms; hallways; foyers and bathrooms; children’s rooms; playrooms; doors and doorways; windows and trim.
Eggshell, satin or low sheen paint
Paint manufacturers use various names for finishes whose sheen levels are lower than semi-gloss, yet more lustrous than flat paints. Among the terms commonly used are “eggshell”, “satin” and “low sheen”. (Satin or
low sheen paints sometimes have a slightly higher sheen than those with eggshell finishes).
Paints in this category tend to impart more warmth and depth to surfaces than flat paints. They resist stains better than flat paints, although not as well as semi-gloss and gloss paint. Eggshell, satin or low sheen paints are a good choice for rooms or areas where some sheen is desired and good cleaning properties are necessary.
Examples include: hallways, bathrooms, children’s rooms and playrooms. Occasionally, these types of paints are used for ceilings. However, their slight sheen will tend to highlight surface imperfections more so than flat paints.
Flat paints diffuse light, so they tend to conceal surface imperfections better than paints with higher sheen levels. As a result, they are a good choice for general use on walls and ceilings, especially those that are dented or rough.