Picking out paint can be overwhelming for someone who doesn't do it often. Even walking into a hardware store and looking at all of the choices can make you feel in over your head. There are hundreds of variations of each shade, so even if you thought you knew what you wanted to begin with, you might be less sure once you review all of the choices.
On top of choosing a shade, you’ve also got to pick a sheen. There are very specific advantages to each of the different levels of sheen. Each sheen of paint also has its own shortcomings, and we can’t use a single sheen for every part of the house – that’s not how modern paint works.
One of the options you’ll have in paints is a higher sheen or glossy paint. Here are some of the main upsides to the different types of shiny paints.
There Are Really Two Types: Semi-Gloss and Gloss (or High-Gloss)
And as the names imply, they’re kind of the same sheen, but different levels. There are also more flat sheen paints, which we won’t discuss in this blog, but have other articles about, which you can read here.
Here’s the main concept to grasp: glossy paints are nicer and shinier, and also more durable. Therefore, you might want to use high sheen paints in high-traffic areas like a kids playroom or a hallway. The paint will be less likely to rub off or become damaged. Just remember that both types of high sheen paint reflect light quite a bit, so you’ll need to consider how dark the room is before applying either.
This is halfway between a flat and high-gloss paint, which makes it a nice compromise between the two. Semi-gloss is for those who want to add some shininess or elegance to a space, but desire a little more durability. That makes it ideal for places like the kitchen or bathroom – rooms where we don’t mind a little shininess, since no one is going to be sleeping in there. Plus, semi-gloss paint can still be scrubbed and cleaned off.
This is the fanciest (and often most expensive) paint on the market, meaning it’s meant specifically for showing off. Unsurprisingly, high-gloss paint is also probably the most durable on the market. Keep in mind that it requires a very clean and unaltered surface, because imperfections will come shining through it. So you’ll need to sand down areas that will be covered in this paint sheen and scrub them thoroughly.
Where is high-gloss often used? Doors, trim, shutters, cabinets and crown moulding. You could also try it on the bathroom and kitchen walls, but remember that it’s the shiniest paint available – so consider how it will be affected by light before applying.