Staging a home to sell or updating a newly purchased home often involves painting, which can add a sense of newness and cleanness to a space. As not painting a house can run the risk of lessening a property's value, not painting a home for sale is one of several possible mistakes a seller can make." But anyone who’s visited a hardware store in search of paint has come face to face with an entire aisle stacked from floor to ceiling with different varieties of paint. Oil-based, Latex-based, with primers, without primers, high gloss, eggshell, matte. Where does anyone even begin?
Here’s a breakdown of all the most common varieties of paint to help anyone pick the perfect type for their needs.
Primer has one major use: preparing a wall for paint. It’s used both on brand new drywall as well as on top of old paint to prepare the wall for the new color. A coat of primer on top of the old paint will help mask it so it runs less risk of showing through the new color, and it can bring a competitive edge in selling your Olympus home.
There are also three different types of primer: oil, latex, and shellac. Shellac is best for walls that are stained or damaged, but it runs the risk of giving off more fumes. Oil and shellac primer are both considered good choices in covering stained walls, and latex primer is considered ideal for priming unfinished drywall. In most cases, use the type of primer that matches the paint base.
Paint With Primer
As an alternative to just a normal primer, it’s common to find paint that already has the primer in it so there’s no need to do a coat of primer before the color. The combination paint with primer is best used on walls that have a similar color to the new color because it doesn’t hide old paint quite as well as a coat of normal primer.
Oil paints are becoming less common in hardware stores, but they're still available with a little hunting. These paints are convenient because one coat covers old paint more thoroughly than latex and it’s less likely to shrink as it dries. Oil paints are also more durable than latex, so they can take more of a scrubbing when dirty.
However, oil-based paints require special care during the painting process because they are prone to giving off strong fumes that some people may find intolerable. It also requires special cleaning products to preserve the brushes after painting.
Latex paint is also known as water-based paint. It’s more common than oil paints and doesn’t have overwhelming fumes. It’s also far more forgiving when it comes to cleaning because it doesn’t require special products to remove. However, latex paint dries much faster than oil paint, which can be inconvenient for some people. Overall, latex paint is a good general use paint that will get most jobs done.
- High Gloss: This finish is the most durable of them all. It also has the most sheen and reflects light easily. Because it’s so durable, high gloss is a good choice for cabinets and other places that get touched often.
- Semi-Gloss: It’s only slightly less durable and glossy than high gloss, and semi-gloss can be used in rooms that are exposed to steam and splashes like kitchens and bathrooms.
- Satin: Satin finish is the median between high gloss and matte. It has a velvety sheen, but it also has a tendency to show off uneven brush strokes, so doing touch-ups can be tricky.
- Eggshell: Like an egg, eggshell has a slight gloss to it, but not enough to be highly noticeable. It’s a good general use finish that can fit in most rooms.
- Matte: Also known as “flat,” this finish has the least sheen of any of the finishes. Because there’s nothing added to the paint, it’s the least durable and the most likely to peel or rub off when cleaning, so it’s best used in rooms where bumping and scuffing aren’t a risk.
Here are some uses for all the most common varieties of paints and primers. With a little know-how and practice, any DIY project can look like a professional job. For any questions, the paint attendant at the local hardware store will be able to give knowledgeable advice.