A wall being painted a red sheen, softly reflecting light.

Picking the right paint sheen can be a hard decision to make. You may not even know the significance of picking the right sheen in the first place – why is it even important, after all? Well, the reality is that a good paint sheen can mean a world of difference. Let’s explore why, and then we’ll touch on what you should look out for.

Why Paint Sheens are Important

So let’s assume that you’ve got the perfect color for your project. The next step is figuring out the sheen because, well, you don’t want to lock yourself into a situation where you have a paint that’s too shiny and reflects a ton of light, making your walls blindingly bright.

That’s what paint sheen is – it’s the finish that affects how color appears, depending on whether the sheen absorbs or reflects light. It also needs to hold up well as time goes on, so the sheen has to make the paint durable enough for whatever surface and situation you’ve got.

Understanding that, the importance of sheen seems a little more obvious. Let’s break down what each sheen’s pros and cons are.

Which Paint Sheen to Choose

So you’re ready to pick the right sheen for the job, but you’re still not sure what sheen is best for your project. As you can guess, each sheen has its own reasons to use it and reasons not to use it, depending on the situation your paint project will be put in.

Matte and Flat Sheens

Matte and flat paints are low luster to non-reflective. They both help hide any imperfections on the surface, as light won’t reflect as much off of the dimples or other problems. However, matte and flat paints are not resistant to stains as well as other sheens are. We’d recommend using these sheens for anything that won’t experience much wear and tear or splatters.A wall being painted a blue sheen, absorbing most of the light.

Satin and Eggshell Sheens

Both are easier to clean than matte and flat sheens, and slightly shinier. Keep in mind that they tend to bring out surface imperfections, so be prepared to get the wall as smooth as possible. We recommend using satin and eggshell sheens on both walls and trim just about anywhere.

Semigloss Sheens

Significantly more lustrous than its counterparts, semigloss sheens typically resist stains and are easier to clean than the other finishes. However, very smooth surfaces are a requirement for semigloss paint projects. We recommend using semigloss sheens on windows, doors and trim.

When in doubt…

Come talk to us about your next project and we can give you an idea of what we can do!