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Congratulations… you’re taking the plunge with new paint. So many fun possibilities! While we usually think of color as the big decision, SHEEN is also an important factor in choosing paint. So, what exactly is “sheen” and why does it matter?

The sheen you choose should be based on the final look and wearability you desire. Are you dreaming of fancy details, easily wiping away little fingerprints, or concealing a few flaws?

Here’s a quick guide to picking the right paint sheen for your next painting project.


  • No shine, does not reflect light
  • Helps hide surface blemishes
  • Provides a smooth, subtle finish
  • Camouflages imperfections
  • Ideal for low-traffic areas
  • Holds dirt and is more difficult to clean, cleaners may leave marks
  • Perfect for: adult bedrooms, dining rooms, formal living rooms, ceilings



  • Low shine, smooth, velvety surface
  • Best for low-traffic areas
  • More washable than flat sheens
  • Perfect for: living room, dining room, bedrooms, foyer, family room, hallways, kitchen, trim



  • Slight gloss, provides an elegant look, extremely versatile
  • Easy to wipe clean
  • Use indoors or outdoors
  • Withstands moisture, making it ideal for kitchens and bathrooms
  • Perfect for: family room, playroom, laundry room, dining room, children’s bedroom, trim, shutters, doors



  • Reflects light creating a visible shine, brightens rooms
  • Very durable and washable
  • High resistance to moisture
  • Can be easily scrubbed clean
  • Ideal for high-traffic areas
  • May be used indoors or outdoors
  • Perfect for: kitchens, bathrooms, utility area, closet doors, trim, woodwork, and cabinetry, railings, shutters, molding, and ceilings



  • Highest level of shine, smooth finish
  • Very durable
  • Ideal for surfaces that require frequent washing
  • Provides a look similar to enamel
  • Perfect for: doors, windows, trim, architectural elements, cabinets, furniture, kitchen, bathrooms


Remember, you can always ask our painting professionals here at 1st Class Painting & Restoration for expert advice! Give us a call; this is the stuff we love!

Tags: Sheen, Finish, Painting, Design

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