January 12, 2024 marketpl
Couple Painting their home

If you’ve ever gone to the store in search of paint, you know that choosing the right product can be a daunting task. As you gaze at a seemingly endless array of options, you will realize that paint color is just one of the many choices you must make. For example, choosing the right type of paint sheen is another very important decision. Paint sheen not only influences the aesthetic appeal of a room but also plays a crucial role in durability and maintenance.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss various types of paint sheens and how each of them impacts the overall look and feel of your space. Whether you are a DIY enthusiast or you just want to refresh your home or office, you will learn how to choose the perfect finish for your next painting project.

What is Paint Sheen?

Paint sheen, also called finish, is a term that describes how much light the paint reflects or how glossy it appears. Higher sheens are glossier, and they also contain more hardening agents, which makes them more durable.

There are six main types of paint sheen, which include flat, matte, eggshell, satin, semi-gloss, and gloss. The flat is the lowest sheen, and it has virtually no shine. Gloss is the highest sheen, which reflects the most light. Let’s dive deeper into each of these sheen types.

Comparing Paint Sheens


Flat paint is non-reflective, meaning light gets absorbed rather than bouncing off the surface. It appears to have a chalky texture, and the colors look very pigmented. Because of this, flat paint is an excellent choice for hiding surface dents, patches, and other imperfections. It is also very easy to touch up. On the other hand, durability is low because flat paint is difficult to clean, and it is not resistant to dirt, scuffs, or stains.


Matte paint is a step up from flat paint in terms of sheen, as it does have some shine, but very little. Similar to flat paint, matte is a great option for covering surface blemishes, and it is very easy to paint with and touch up. Unfortunately, it also has relatively low durability, so it is vulnerable to dirt and scuffs. Matte paint has a smooth, modern look that works well with rich, bold colors.


The eggshell sheen is named because of its resemblance to the outer surface of a bird’s egg. It has a very low luster, and the finish gives surfaces a soft appearance. Its durability is higher than matte paint, but it is not the most durable paint type. Eggshell is an extremely practical choice, as it can also cover wall imperfections sufficiently, is fairly easy to clean, and it looks great in most rooms.


A satin finish is a type of sheen that appears smooth and bright. It is more reflective than eggshell, matte, and flat paints, but it isn’t overly glossy. Satin is very durable, easy to clean, and it has good coverage and high stain-resistance. On the downside, it can be difficult to paint with a satin finish, as brush strokes and small blemishes can be highlighted by the reflection of the light.


A semi-gloss finish appears very shiny, giving your space a bright, lustrous look. It is very durable, as it can easily withstand scrubbing, moisture, sunlight, and dirt. Semi-gloss paint is easy to clean, so it is a great choice for high-traffic areas. However, it is more difficult to paint with since higher shine makes surface imperfections more noticeable.


Lastly, the highest sheen type is gloss. Because of its extremely shiny and reflective appearance, gloss is best used as an accent rather than covering an entire room. It is similar to semi-gloss in that it is highly moisture-resistant, scuff-resistant, and easy to clean. However, gloss paint reveals imperfections easily, and it often requires several coats to achieve good coverage.

Choosing A Paint Sheen

Choosing the right paint sheen is a crucial step in achieving the desired look and durability for your space. For areas with minimal foot traffic like ceilings, bedrooms, or offices, consider using flat or matte paint. These also have high pigment and excellent wall coverage, making them the most cost-effective.

The eggshell finish is versatile, and its soft, polished appearance is an excellent choice for gathering spaces like dining rooms and living rooms. A shiny, satin finish will also work well in these rooms, and its extra durability makes it great for foyers, playrooms, hallways, and exterior siding as well.

For high-traffic areas like kitchens, bathrooms, or laundry rooms, semi-gloss and gloss paint offers the best durability. These are also perfect for frequently touched surfaces such as trim, doors, cabinets, shutters, and banisters. High gloss paint will create a lustrous finish on prominent elements like crown molding and other woodwork.

By considering the specific requirements of each space, you can confidently choose the perfect paint sheen for every room in your home.

Shop Paint Sheens

When shopping for your next painting project, look no further than Marketplace Paints, your local paint and decorating store serving Aiken, North Augusta, and Greenwood. Our in-store experts are ready to guide you through the diverse options, ensuring you make the perfect choice for your space.

Whether you’re revamping a large area or just adding creative accents, Marketplace Paints has the expertise and high-quality products you need. Don’t hesitate to reach out for personalized advice and assistance. You can contact us or learn more about our products and services on our website, www.marketplacepaints.com!

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,