Not every surface in your home is created equal, and it stands to reason that this means they can’t all be painted equally, either.

If you’re paint shopping for your next at home project, it’s a good idea to stop for a primer on types of paint first.


Oil-Based Paints

Best For: Exterior surfaces, furniture, baseboards

Oil based paints are more durable than their counterparts in the water based paint family, but they will also take longer to set and cure. This makes them perfectly suited to surfaces that are going to see a lot of wear and tear in the long-term.

In case you’re wondering where the name comes from, the technical nitty gritty is that with oil-based paints, colored pigments are suspended in (most commonly) linseed oil, tung oil, poppyseed oil and nut oil.

Oil-based paints do tend to be pretty inflexible, so they’re likely not a good choice for surfaces likely to expand and warp (for example, wood).


Water-Based Paints

Best For: Walls, ceilings

This is the most common type of paint, with as much of 75% of what is readily available in hardware stores falling under this category. This paint is lighter and more flexible, making it an ideal candidate for a vast majority of indoor (and some outdoor) surfaces.

You might see a lot of paints labeled “latex” when you go looking for water-based paints, and that’s because the two terms are, in most cases, interchangeable.

Although there is not actually latex in these paints, it has become a catch-all term for the acrylic substances commonly used to make these paints. For that reason, “acrylic paint” is another name for this same category.

The consistency of water-based paint makes application easier, and because its base ingredient is water, it’s also a lot easier to clean up. This makes it a good choice for most day-to-day projects around your home.

Inside these two major categories, you’ll also find a variety of finishes: matte, satin/eggshell and glossy. Matte paints are non-reflective. They are also excellent at hiding texture flaws, making them a good choice for ceilings.

Eggshell and satin paint are slightly shinier, with satin being farther on the shiny end than eggshell. These are considered a good balance between durability and shine. Glossy paint is very durable, can be easily washed, and reflects a high shine.

Still not sure what the right kind of paint is for your next¬† project? Get a professional’s input by contacting Walgrove today!