Choosing the right paint for decorating your home

When you’re looking to decorate your home the first thing you’ll have to do is work out what you want to do. If you’ve decided you’d like to paint your room your thoughts will instantly run toward what colours you’d like, but with so many types of paint on the market it can be difficult to know the difference, so we’re going to have a look at the types of paint and why they’re different in this blog.


The makeup of paint is simple you have a pigment (colour) and a binder. The binder is either usually oil or water based. For the purposes of this blog we’re going to focus on the types of paints you’d use for decorating, and not crafts or other jobs.



Most interior walls are painted using emulsion paints. Emulsions are water-based paints with acrylic or vinyl added. This adds sheen to the finish depending on the proportions. Emulsions smell less than oil-based paints and are easy to wash out of brushes after you’ve used them.


Matt Finish

Matt paint produces a flat, non-reflective finish which doesn’t show up any imperfections in your walls and ceilings. The colours are usually very deep and rich and are perfect for sitting rooms. Matt paint can mark easily and traditional types aren’t washable, but new technology has brought out washable matt paints.


Satin Finish

Satin finish paint is more durable than vinyl matt and can be washed using a light sponge to get rid of marks. It’s really the halfway house between matt and silk finish.


Silk Finish

Silk finish paint provides a shiny finish and is completely washable, and is used in areas where there are high amounts of traffic. It’s the most durable but doesn’t take touch ups very well. You’d have to repaint the entire area if you were thinking of doing a quick touch up.


Things to look out for

One coat – This is a thicker paint that requires only one coat.

Kitchen Emulsion – This is designed to be wiped clean for use in kitchens.

Bathroom emulsion – This contains anti-mould technology and can withstand water and steam.



Gloss paints are traditionally oil-based and include resin to make them more hardwearing. Modern gloss paints are available in oil or water-based options. These paints are generally used for areas that need to be hardwearing like doors and skirting boards. They leave a very shiny finish.


Things to look out for

Satinwood – This is a less shiny version of gloss paint that isn’t as reflective.

Polyurethane gloss – This has added polyurethane to give more protection against scuffs and chips.

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