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Out of Curiosity:: Paint Sheen?

If you follow me on my A2D Facebook page then you know I had paint drama this weekend.  Last Thursday, I had purchased a gallon of Behr paint in a beautiful deep black called Beluga in a satin finish.  Satin paint is my “go to” sheen.  Well, either that or eggshell (and frankly, I usually can’t tell much of a difference between the two).  So this time, I was on autopilot when I ordered my paint, and I asked for satin.

I was pretty disappointed with the result.  My office walls are incredibly textured, which I don’t like, but there’s no way I’m spending the time it would take to smooth out the walls.  Nope, I’m living with the texture.  But I hadn’t counted on my satin finish paint making the texture stand out even more.

black office wall texture

After getting people’s input on it, and wrestling back and forth with options for several hours, I finally decided yesterday that I just didn’t like it, and it needed to be fixed.  So back to Home Depot I went, and got a gallon of Beluga in Flat Enamel (which is actually different from Flat Matte).

I’m so glad I did.  The wall still has a bit of a sheen to it, similar to what a satin sheen looks like in lighter colors.  But I no longer have the light bouncing off the walls highlighting all of that heavy texture.  You can see the satin finish at the top of the photo below, and the flat enamel finish at the bottom.

black wall before and after

I’m very pleased with the new flat enamel finish, and so glad I took the time to repaint the walls.  It’s one of those things that would have bothered me had I not corrected it.

So, for the first time that I can remember, my “go to” paint sheen didn’t work out for me.  And perhaps in the process, I’ve found a new favorite “go to” paint sheen.

So what about you?  Do you have a favorite “go to” paint sheen for walls?  Or perhaps you have two.  Do you use satin in all of your high traffic areas, and flat in your less trafficked areas?  Do you use eggshell throughout your whole house?  Or are you a brave one who sticks with flat throughout because you don’t like any shine?

If you selected more than one, leave a comment and tell me about your system. Do you use satin in bathrooms and kitchen, and flat everywhere else?

 



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17 Comments

  • Reply
    mc3073
    May 23, 2011 at 6:17 pm

    Hi Kristi,
    Love the flat enamel without the shine on your textured walls.  I like the look of flat paint, but whenever I had to wipe off fingerprints, etc., the paint would become discolored or lift off.  I am so happy that I discovered flat enamel, too! Now, I can scrub/wipe away and no problems–I can have flat paint anywhere.  Yay!  I like eggshell, too, if I want a little shine :).  Can't wait to see the office all done up–I was worried about black walls, but I know you will pull it off!
    Sindy

  • Reply
    Lucy
    May 23, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    Flat paint is what you want because it does not show the imperfections and you can do touch ups without repainting the entire wall. 

    Try touching up walls with any other sheen and you'll understand.. it never works.  You'll always notice where you tried to do the touch up. 

    If I get a smudge or scuff .. I just touch it up with leftover paint. 

  • Reply
    Blair
    May 23, 2011 at 8:31 pm

    I like semi-gloss because it cleans up much easier than a flat or eggshell and glossy can be a bit much on walls. Good luck!

    ~Blair

  • Reply
    Dianne
    May 23, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    Hi Kristi,
    We found that flat paint worked best with deep colored paint, but we like eggshell for everything else.  We learned the hard way when we painted our dining room wall a rich red with a satin paint.  After that we switched to eggshell for everything else (we were painting the whole house) and stuck with flat for the deep colors.  
    Dianne 

  • Reply
    Ca Powell
    May 23, 2011 at 9:25 pm

     As I mentioned on your FB post, in Toronto, NO ONE paints with anything but Flat paint. Ben. Moore makes an amazing washable flat that is used on everything, except trim and doors.  They even have a special one for bathrooms and kitchens. I love how the colours look more 'true' somehow, in a flat finish.

  • Reply
    Msjwilliams2000
    May 23, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    Hi, Kristi.
    First, I really enjoy your blog!  You're doing such a great job with the condo rehab!  I am a former Texas girl, having lived outside of Dallas for nearly 8 years.  And  the one thing I DO NOT miss about Texas are those crazy textured walls!!!  They are such a pain and are almost as bad as popcorn ceilings (which I also suffered with).  That being said, I used eggshell in every room in my Texas house.  Now,  I live with normal walls and ceilings (yay!).  I used flat in the less-used areas.  I really prefer it since I don't like any sheen on my walls.  In the kid rooms, stairway, and main living areas, I used eggshell.  I've never tried anything shinier but would love to with a dark color.  So, with the texture, I think you have to use a flat finish.  The color looks beautiful, but the texture, eh.  Gotta love that 80's Texas style!  Can't wait to see the finished office!
    Sharon

  • Reply
    Kimberly @TheSterlingCherub
    May 24, 2011 at 3:10 am

    The re-do with the flat sheen does look a lot better.  Glad you went with your gut and changed it out, it looks beautiful.
     
    My last apartment had been rented by an old man who smoked heavily, and lived there for 10 or 15 years.  When he moved out, the management had to completely air out the apartment, pull out all the carpet and padding, re-do the linoleum floors and wash down walls, cabinets, etc. due to the nicotine stains and smoke smell (which never really left the apartment and was evident every time I turned on the A/C and heat, even though they cleaned the vent system.  Made me wonder what his lungs looked like!).  The walls kept bleeding nicotine through them, so they had to use Kilz and then painted every wall in the house with GLOSS SHEEN paint!  To me, it was like living inside a disco ball with the walls so was unnervingly shiny.  And the gross part besides the disco ball thing and the HVAC thing, was that the bathroom walls would sweat a nicotine color when they steamed up.  Disgusting.  Again wondering what that man's lungs looked like!  Long story longer, I am not a fan of "shiny" walls at all, so my go-to sheen is flat or eggshell.
     
    Can't wait to see when you office is completed!
     
    Best,
     
    Kimberly
     

  • Reply
    mom blog
    May 24, 2011 at 10:29 am

    First of all, I LOVE the heavy texture on your walls.  I live in TX and most of the homes here have texture.  We moved into a home a few years back that had flat walls.  We had all the walls "hand textured" and we love it!  I never paint with flat wall paint since I have young kids who would "paint" cheetos / chocolate hand prints on my walls this type of paint.  The satin/eggshell paint is so easy to wipe off!  Chocolate, Cheetos, & etc. are no match with satin / eggshell paint.  For that reason, I will never stray!  I think flat wall paint gets a "dirty" look over time and eggshell / satin lasts longer.  So 2 coats of eggshell / satin for me!

    Bobbie Anne,
    BlogWithMom.com
    BlogWithMom.scentsy.us

  • Reply
    mom blog
    May 24, 2011 at 10:34 am

     Lucy,
    I had professional painters come in and paint eggshell.  They instructed me to  paint a small section, as small as I could when touching up my walls.  They said if I painted a huge spot it would show up, but if it were just as large as needed, I could pull it off.

    I also have heavily textured walls, which helps hide wall imperfections.  It also helps with touch ups.

    Bobbie Anne,
    BlogWithMom.com
    BlogWithMom.scentsy.us

  • Reply
    mom blog
    May 24, 2011 at 10:37 am

    I have never tried Bed Moore paint.  I am a Sherwin Williams Super Paint fan!  Once you find something you link, it's just so hard to make that switch.

    Bobbie Anne,
    BlogWithMom.com
    BlogWithMom.scentsy.us

  • Reply
    mom blog
    May 24, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Sharon,
    I live in TX and love the texture.  My family is from the North and aren't very keen on the texture as I am.  We bought a home that had "hidden" nail pops throughout the house, which we didn't see until the previous owner moved out!  We had the house hand textured and all the imperfections are gone.  We love the heavy texture, although it is harder to paint, making sure you get paint inside all those hundreds of grooves…LOL.  Also, when painting new texture, the walls just soak up the paint, but once it is finished, it looks great!

    Bobbie Anne,
    BlogWithMom.com
    BlogWithMom.scentsy.us

  • Reply
    Stacy Haugen
    May 24, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    The flat looks so much better! 
     

  • Reply
    Kim Kern
    May 24, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    I always use semi-gloss because it is more washable, which is what really matters when you have a house full of boys and pets.  I do love the look of the flat so now that most of the boys are grown, I may need to change my ways.  🙂

  • Reply
    the cape on the corner
    May 24, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    the flat looks soo much better!  glad you chose to go over the sheen, especially before you progress with the room. 

  • Reply
    Penny Davidson
    June 3, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    I prefer eggshell….I would love to see pics of your completed room in black – so cool!!  Never thought of painting walls black, would love to see how it all turned out!  Loving your blog!
    Penny
    http://www.thegypsymom.blogpost.com
    http://www.p2charmsboutique.com

  • Reply
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    October 24, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    I like your point of view when it comes to making an art paint. Such a wonderful talent. 

  • Reply
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