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Kitchen Wall Paint Finishes and Sheens

  • By: Kitchen Informant
  • Date: March 1, 2024


Kitchen Wall Paint Finishes and Sheens: A Guide to Choosing the Right One.

Kitchen wall paint finishes and sheens can make a huge difference in the overall look and feel of a kitchen.

The right finish can make the walls and cabinets look more attractive and also make them easier to clean and maintain.

When choosing the right paint finish for your kitchen, it is important to consider factors such as lighting, traffic, and the overall style of the kitchen.

The kitchen wall glistens with a glossy finish, reflecting the light. The smooth surface creates a sleek, modern look

Understanding paint finishes is the first step in choosing the right sheen for your kitchen. Glossy finishes are the most reflective and durable, but they can also highlight imperfections in the walls and cabinets.

Matte finishes, on the other hand, are less reflective and can hide imperfections, but they are also less durable and harder to clean.

Satin and eggshell finishes are a good compromise between the two, providing a slightly glossy sheen that is easy to clean and maintain.

Choosing the right sheen for your kitchen is also important. High-traffic areas such as the kitchen require a finish that is durable and easy to clean.

Glossy finishes are ideal for cabinets and trim, while satin or eggshell finishes are better for walls.

It is also important to consider the lighting in the kitchen, as glossy finishes can reflect light and create a glare in bright spaces.

With the right finish and sheen, your kitchen can look beautiful and be easy to maintain for years to come.

Key Takeaways

  • Understanding paint finishes is crucial when choosing the right sheen for your kitchen.
  • Glossy finishes are ideal for high-traffic areas such as cabinets and trim.
  • Satin or eggshell finishes are better for kitchen walls and provide a good compromise between durability and ease of maintenance.

Understanding Paint Finishes

A glossy red kitchen.

When it comes to painting kitchen walls, choosing the right paint finish can be just as important as selecting the right color. Paint finishes, also known as paint sheens, determine the level of glossiness or shininess in the dried coat of paint. Different finishes offer various levels of durability and ease of cleaning.

Gloss Finish

Gloss finish is the shiniest and most reflective of all finishes. It is ideal for kitchen cabinets and trim, but not recommended for walls as it can highlight any imperfections in the surface. Gloss finish is also the most durable and easy to clean of all finishes.

Semi-Gloss Finish

Semi-gloss finish is less shiny than gloss finish, but still moderately reflective. It is perfect for areas that get cleaned frequently, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and utility areas. Semi-gloss finish is also a good choice for trim and closet doors.

Satin Finish

Satin finish has a slight shine and offers a richer look than flat or matte finishes. It is a versatile finish that works well on walls, ceilings, and trim. Satin finish is easy to clean and ideal for kitchens, dining rooms, and other areas where a subtle shine is desired.

Eggshell Finish

Eggshell finish has a low sheen and is similar in appearance to the surface of an eggshell. It is a popular choice for walls in kitchens, living rooms, and bedrooms. Eggshell finish is easy to clean and offers good durability.

Matte Finish

Matte finish has the lowest level of sheen and is non-reflective. It is ideal for hiding imperfections on walls and ceilings, but not recommended for high-traffic areas as it is less durable and harder to clean than other finishes. Matte finish is a good choice for bedrooms, home offices, and other low-traffic areas.

Choosing the Right Sheen

A kitchen with blue cabinets and backsplash. A white kitchen island with wood chairs.

When choosing the right sheen for your kitchen wall paint, there are a few factors to consider. The sheen level will affect the overall appearance, durability, and maintenance requirements of your paint.

Below are some things to consider when selecting a sheen for your kitchen walls.

Room Functionality

The functionality of your kitchen will play a significant role in determining the right sheen for your walls.

For high-traffic areas such as the kitchen, it is recommended to use a sheen that is easy to clean and maintain.

Glossier sheens such as semi-gloss or high-gloss are best suited for these areas as they are more durable and can withstand frequent cleaning.

On the other hand, low-traffic areas such as dining spaces or breakfast nooks can use a flatter sheen such as eggshell or satin.

Lighting Considerations

Lighting can also play a role in determining the right sheen for your kitchen walls.

If your kitchen receives a lot of natural light, a higher sheen level can help reflect the light and make the space feel brighter.

In contrast, if your kitchen has minimal natural light, a lower sheen level can help absorb the light and make the space feel more cozy.

Durability Requirements

The durability of your kitchen wall paint is another important factor to consider when selecting a sheen.

High-gloss sheens are the most durable and can withstand frequent cleaning, making them ideal for high-traffic areas. However, they can also highlight imperfections on the wall surface.

Flatter sheens such as eggshell or satin are less durable but can help hide imperfections and are easier to touch up.

Maintenance and Care

A forest green kitchen with a wooden countertop, and island.

Cleaning Painted Walls

Maintaining the finish of your kitchen walls is essential to keep them looking fresh and new.

Regular cleaning can help remove dirt, grime, and stains, and preserve the paint finish. However, to ensure the best results, you need to use the right cleaning method for the type of paint finish you have.

According to Benjamin Moore, the higher the gloss or sheen, the easier it is to clean.

Satin, pearl, and semi-gloss finishes are more resistant to stains, dirt, and mildew, and can be scrubbed more easily. On the other hand, flat, matte, and eggshell finishes are more delicate and require a gentler cleaning approach.

To clean painted walls, start by dusting off any loose debris with a soft-bristled brush or a microfiber cloth.

Then, use a mild cleaning solution and a soft sponge or cloth to wipe the walls. Avoid using abrasive cleaners, scrub brushes, or harsh chemicals as they can damage the paint finish.

For tough stains, you can try spot-cleaning with a mixture of warm water and mild dish soap or a specialized cleaning product.

Always test the solution on a small, inconspicuous area first to ensure it does not damage the paint.

In addition to regular cleaning, it is also important to address any issues that may affect the paint finish, such as water leaks, humidity, or mold.

Fixing these problems promptly can help prevent damage to the paint and keep your kitchen walls looking beautiful for years to come.