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    Understanding Sheen

    Choosing the right sheen for your painting project is a critical step for a lasting paint job. Using a paint with a higher gloss increases the durability of paints, resistance of stains and moisture resistance. Higher sheen levels will also highlight defects and imperfections on a surface.

    A piece of trim painted blue using a matte paint.
    Matte paints have very little gloss. They help conceal small imperfections and are ideal for rough walls. Matte paints have good touch-up properties. They are a good choice for just about any ceiling, and for rooms and spaces that aren’t exposed to water, high humidity, or heavy soiling… such as bedrooms, home offices, and living rooms. It’s best to use matte paints in low-traffic areas.
    A piece of trim painted blue using an eggshell paint.
    Eggshell finishes are bit more shiny than a matte, but less “shiny” than a satin.They won’t highlight nicks and surface imperfections quite as much as a satin, but since they have at least a little gloss, they’ll be easier to clean and resist stains better than matte paints. Eggshell finish work well just about anywhere you need the blend of performance attributes they offer such as traffic areas, dining rooms, living rooms and kid’s rooms.
    A piece of trim painted blue using a satin paint.

    Satin paints are extremely versatile. They can even be used on the walls of kitchens and baths, and various surfaces in children’s rooms and playrooms. Paints with satin sheen are a smart compromise between the two sheen extremes, providing some of the benefits of each. Since they are not as highly reflective as gloss paints, they won’t show surface imperfections quite as much; yet they still offer good stain resistance and are easy to clean.