What is Paint Sheen & Why Does it Matter?

Paint sheen is the amount of light reflected off the paint’s surface. The sheen is why some paint has a matte or flat finish, while others are smooth and glossy. Different areas of your home do different jobs and require different paint finishes. Read on to pick your perfect sheen, and get your shine on.

Matte Paint = Flat Paint = No Sheen

Matte, or flat paint has essentially no sheen. The paint has no reflective properties, but the finish is smooth and uniform. It’s easy to touch-up flat paint as blending is fairly easy to do. Modern flat finishes have come a long way in terms of washability, and are more durable as well. Flat paint is also a great choice to hide minor surface imperfections. Consult with a painting professional if you aren’t certain which finish to choose. They’ll have the experience to point you in the right direction.

Eggshell Finish Paint = Glow Sheen

An eggshell finish provides a minimal amount of reflection or sheen. Grab an egg from the fridge and take a look. There’s a subtle glow to the finish that’s just a little bit brighter than a matte or flat finish paint. In general, an eggshell finish paint offers a higher degree of washability and durability. In terms of do-it-yourself touch-ups, the added sheen means blending requires a deft touch.

Satin Finish Paint: Iron Fist in a Velvet Glove = More Sheen

Satin sheen offers a higher level of reflection and durability than either matte or egg-shell finish paints. Perfect for high-traffic areas, satin sheen paint is easy to clean, durable and no stranger to sticky handprints. Long-lasting, satin sheen paint will keep your walls looking good for years to come. A quality painting professional is an ideal partner, bringing the experience and skill to create lovely, smooth, long-lasting surfaces thanks to proper preparation and two coats of paint to finish the job for good.

Semi-Gloss Pain =  High Sheen

Think dogs and kids and bathrooms. Think moisture and messes and cleaning up. Semi-gloss finish paint is perfect for childrens’ rooms, bathrooms, and laundry or mud rooms. Durability and washability are hallmarks of this higher sheen finish. You’ll want a contractor with attention to detail for semi-gloss work as the finish can highlight surface imperfections. Preparation is even more important when working with semi-gloss finishes.

Glossy Paint = Ultimate Sheen

High-gloss paint is the perfect choice for surfaces that are well-used, and sometimes abused, areas of your home. High-gloss paint is the ideal choice for cabinet doors and trim. It stands up well to fingerprints, shoe scuffs and cleaning. As with a semi-gloss finish, you’ll want to enlist an experienced painting professional to handle detailed preparation to ensure a quality end result.


Categories: Interior House Painting, Paint Sheen, Uncategorized