How to Pick the Perfect Paint

Posted by Justin Havre on Friday, September 15th, 2017 at 9:54am.

What to Know About Paint Types When Repainting Your HomeWhen it comes to paint, there’s a lot of different choices. For someone painting for the first time, it can be overwhelming to walk into a hardware store and find dozens of different types of paints. To make painting easy, here are all the different types of paint and how to best use them. It's a fun way to refresh your home's look, and it has a great ROI for home sellers looking to spruce up their place.


Many painting guides will say a wall should be painted with a primer before putting colored paint on a wall. This is because the primer will help cover old paint and create a blank surface for the new paint so the old color doesn’t come through it. Recently, it’s become common to find paints with the primer already mixed in to help cut down on the amount of work it takes to paint a room.


Latex-based paints are the most common in hardware stores. When painting, they dry faster and cleans up far easier than oil-based paints when spills happen, and the color won’t yellow over time. Latex-based paints are also better for the environment, and they don’t have strong fumes. However, latex-based paints have a tendency to need more than one coat, and it can sometimes swell the grain of wood, which means it will require sanding between coats.


Oil-based paints are less common than latex-based, but they do have some advantages that make them worth finding for certain projects. When painting a wall that has been damaged by cigarette smoke, oil-based paints will cover nicotine stains far better than latex-based paints. Oil-based paints also have a tendency to only need one coat, and they take longer to dry, so it leaves more time to work. However, oil-based paints have fumes that can be overwhelming, the paint itself is more likely to crack and fade over time, and it special actions need to be taken to dispose of extra paint.

Interior and Exterior

Interior and Exterior paints are the most straightforward of the bunch. Interior is for painting walls inside a home, and exterior is for painting things outside a home such as wooden decks and siding. Exterior paints should always be sealed to protect them from weather damage. There may be extra considerations for exterior paint if you live in Downtown Okotoks due to the higher traffic of vehicles.


There are typically five different types of finish that can be applied to paint to change how it looks when it’s dry. They are as follows:

  • Flat or Matte: This finish has no shine to it and is the least durable finish of the five. Because it’s easily damaged, it’s best to use this sort of paint in a low-traffic rooms 
  • Eggshell: This is one of the most popular finishes for general painting. It’s moderately durable and has a slight shine, but not enough to be distracting
  • Satin: This is both moderately durable and shiny. Satin finish is good for high-traffic areas like kids’ rooms and living rooms
  • Semi Gloss: This finish is quite durable and has a lot of shine. It’s best used in rooms like kitchens and bathrooms that are at risk of water damage
  • High Gloss: This is the most durable paint as well as the shiniest. It’s best used on trims, cabinets, and doors because it tends to show blemishes on walls

Picking the right paint can help bring a room to life, and following these tips can help anyone pick the perfect one for their project. When looking for paint, don’t be afraid to ask a hardware store’s paint attendant questions if confused or interested in a second opinion.

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