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Demystifying Satin Paint Finishes

Satin Paint Finishes
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I want to give an opinion which I am almost 100% sure you will agree with. It is simply this: paint types are too confusing. 

Anytime I even think about painting a room at home and make a trip to the local DIY megastore, my confidence in swiftly shopping for decorating essentials turns into dread when I reach the paint aisle. You might experience the same feelings of being overwhelmed by the sheer volume of brands available, and all the different paints on offer.

Amidst all the confusion, there is one specific finish which leaves me the most baffled, and that’s satin/satinwood. That is why I decided to research satin paint to learn exactly what it is, why it has multiple names, and when you’d use it. Here are some of the most common questions I have been able to find answers to, so you never have to end up as confused as I was.

What Is Satin Paint?

I want you to imagine you are looking at a see-saw. On one side is matt and eggshell paint. On the other side are semi and high-gloss. Right in the middle of the see-saw keeping everything balanced is our friend satin paint.

Simply put, satin paint is not too dull and not too shiny; it’s a little bit of everything.

What Does Satin Paint Look Like On A Wall?

Satin paint will look soft on a wall while having just the teeniest bit of shine. You will sometimes hear it referred to as having a “velvety” finish. Much like how eggshell became a way to describe paint, I am assuming someone settled on saying satin to confuse people like me. If you have a very bright room with a lot of light, satin paint can look glossy.

Are Satin And Satinwood The Same Thing?

Pretty much. It is usually down to the brand and what they prefer to call their satin paints. 

Is It Easy To Use Satin Paint?

Of course, it is. Satin paints go on a wall just like any other, although you might not want to have it on a wall if you’re looking to keep a gentle finish. Satin is best left for the little features you want to give a little zing, like your trims, fittings and the ceiling. 

Can Satin Paint Hide Imperfections?

We all have a wall or two at home with a scratch, knock or dent (mine is in the living room, thanks to a door handle always hitting off the wall). While a good thick gloss will get in there and help uneven surfaces look good as new, satin paint doesn’t quite have the lustre to hide little problems. If you have a slight crack or hole, I advise using some filler or caulk first before you get to painting. 

Can You Wipe Over Satin Paint?

It will depend on the brand you’re buying and the specific type (NOT finish) of paint you want. I would recommend Thepaintshed to see just how many different satin paints a brand can provide. If you are looking for paint that you want to wash or wipe over from time to time, look for scrubbable satin paints or any which are advertised as being grease resistant.

What Should I Avoid When Buying Satin Paint?

Good question. If you’re comparing different satin brands, you will want to check the paint can for drying and recoat times, how much coverage you get per litre, and whether you need to prime a wall with undercoat before you can use the paint. You are typically trying to factor how much time is needed and how much you will pay per litre. Satin paints usually need just two coats to look good.

That’s the basics of satin paint covered. I hope it helps you understand a little more about something that bugged me for the longest time. Now you can paint like an expert and sound smart anytime someone asks you about this type of paint.