Satin vs matte: which paint is better?

Satin vs Matte Paint: Best Tips & Prof Recommendation Painting Color Ideas

If you are preparing to paint a room, you need to worry about the choice of paint. Some people think that paint should be chosen by color and forget about other important characteristics, such as texture, durability, and coating features.

Did you know that pigmentation is directly correlated with its durability? Read about this and other intricacies of choosing paint in our article.

Satin vs Matte

What is the difference between gloss satin and matte?

The main difference between satin and matte paints is the gloss of the coating. Satin paint is characterized by a slightly shiny, silky finish. Matte paint minimally reflects light (absorb light) and doesn’t shine, which is an advantage for color saturation.

The “sheen” characteristic of the paint is due to the ratio of pigments and binders. If the paint is dominated by binders, it becomes glossy in appearance.

Accordingly, if the pigment prevails, then the result is a matte finish.

Binders affect moisture resistance and durability: the more there are, the more durable the coating will be. This means that satin paint is more durable than a matte finish, and semi-gloss paint is more durable than satin. In addition, this glossier finish guarantees ease of cleaning and is suitable for crowded areas.

Satin finishes with a predominance of binders are less pigmented compared to matte finishes. This means that you will need to apply more coats. At the same time, the glossy shine emphasizes perfectly surface imperfections.

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Which is shinier satin or matte?

The flat paint finish is a less glossy paint than satin – this paint has the lowest possible light reflection. For comparison, satin has a lower sheen than semi-gloss and gloss paint.

Detailed comparison: Satin vs matte finish

To understand which paint is right for your surface, let’s delve into their comparisons.

1. The appearance of matte vs satin paint finishes and compliance with the design.

So, matte finishes will give you high color saturation and even coverage without a hint of shine. Satin finish requires multiple coats due to poor pigmentation. In this case, the next layer of application does not guarantee uniformity of the coating. Due to the glossy finish, uneven application and retouching are very conspicuous.

Since the glossy finishes reflect light, nearby objects may take on a tint in the color of your paint.

2. Coating – matte and satin finish

Satin finishes are less pigmented, so you have to apply it in several layers, which increases paint consumption. Also, additional layers may be needed to hide the unevenness of the application. Today on the market you can see a wide range of single-layer satin paints – manufacturers are constantly improving the chemical composition.

Matte paint is well pigmented, and also matte reflects less light, so it’s more loyal to the retouching of the coating.

The matte finish gives you a single coat of coverage, saving you time and consumables.

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3. Durability and maintenance: Is matte or satin easier to clean?

If you are comparing satin and matte finishes, satin paint is an excellent choice for crowded areas as it is easy to wash off. Semi-gloss paint will also be easy to clean, but at the same time semi-gloss paint will hold up better against moisture, and the high gloss paint will do it even better.

Binders protect the coating from critical dirt and scratches. Surface dirt can be easily cleaned with soapy water and a sponge.

It is important not to overdo it here – household chemicals can damage the paint, and the retouch will be very visible. Also, satin paints are waterproof and have a great advantage if your task is a bathroom.

The matte paint finish is short-lived. Extraneous pigments eat into it, and the surface is easy to scratch or wipe. Since matte paint is applied in one layer, these defects are very noticeable. But they can be easily retouched so that the patch is not noticeable.

Matte paint is not moisture resistant, so it is very difficult to clean it – you can simply wash off the layer and retouch this place.

4. The complexity of applying: matte and satin paint.

Matte paint can be applied quickly using the W-technique, without fear that crooked strokes will be noticeable after drying.

With a satin paint finish, things are more complicated. You should try to create each stroke using the technique of drawing successive vertical lines. Before each new layer, you need to wait until the previous layer is completely dry.

Sometimes it is appropriate to use a spray gun to apply satin paint – if you are afraid that the uneven strokes will ruin the design.

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5. Price difference: matte and satin paint.

Comparing average prices on the modern market, we can conclude that satin finish paint is more expensive than flat paint matte.

The difference in price is not as significant – $5 per gallon, but for a large project, this difference can be significant.

However, when it comes to durability, we recommend spending more and investing in a satin finish.

6. Rationality of use: Satin vs matte paint.

The rationality of using paint depends entirely on the characteristics of the room in which it will be applied. Satin paints are best used for high-traffic areas (such as an office). A satin finish is also an excellent choice for high-humidity areas such as swimming pools, bathrooms, and toilets.

Here, we have collected the main recommendations regarding the choice between matte and satin paints for interior walls in different rooms at home:

• Corridor and living room.

Like common rooms, these rooms belong to high-traffic areas and are in constant contact with other surfaces, clothing, and skin. Satin finish will be the best solution for painting these rooms, as well as eggshell satin and high gloss paint.

• Kitchen.

In addition to the fact that the kitchen has high traffic, it is also characterized by a variety of household pollution and frequent contact with water. Surfaces require regular cleaning and moisture-resistant characteristics. Feel free to choose a satin finish, as the matte finish paint will quickly lose its presentability in this area.

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• Toilet and bathroom.

Hygiene rules require regular cleaning of these rooms. Surfaces of interior walls must be moisture resistant to prevent mold and bacteria growth. Color is not as important as health, so choose a satin or high gloss finish.

• Bedroom.

The bedroom is a quiet room with low traffic, so it is quite possible to use matte paint here. However, for a children’s bedroom, it is better to purchase satin paint finishes – children are very active and the walls get dirty quickly.

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• What about ceilings?

Do not spend money on satin ceiling paint, matte finish paint will be a great solution. It will also hide imperfections.

Tip: to hide coating defects and surface irregularities, use matte paint. Less light reflection will hide surface imperfections.

Matte and satin paints have two different finishes, but it is possible to mix them together.

It is worth noting that you should use two paints from the same brand, so they’ll have the same consistency and base for the best result when you mix matte and satin paint finishes.

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Which is better matte or satin?

Each of the colors has its own advantages, it all depends on your needs.

  • If your task is a dark or bright saturated color, choose matte finishes. If durability is important to you, or you are looking for muted pastel colors, satin paint is your option. The mysterious gloss of the satin finish will leave a shade on the surrounding objects and make the room visually wider.
  • If you want to save money on painting, choose matte paints. However, you will need a certain amount of paint in reserve for further retouching.
  • In case you don’t have much time to paint, use matte paints, as it is applied in one layer and your application skill does not affect the appearance.
  • We recommend that you choose a satin finish if a durable and high-quality result is important to you. You will spend a lot of time painting, and pay more money, but you will thank yourself for this choice in a few years.

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Conclusion: matte and satin finishes

We hope this article has helped you understand which paint is right for your situation and which surface characteristics to look for when choosing a satin vs matte paint finish. Always take into account the traffic of the room, its purpose, and contact with water – so the result of staining will please you much longer.

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My blog was created specifically to bring you the latest design trends. I graduated from Parsons School of Design in New York 10 years ago. I started drawing as a child. I was very fond of design and could even choose a style for my friends and relatives during the renovation.

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