Little-Known Tips on Paint
You think, “I’ve got this.”
Maybe you need help on final paint colors, either to narrow down a palette of options or just to get a designer’s eye on your ideas…
After all, you don’t want to MISS something just because you hadn’t thought of it!
Why we care so much about paint
Paint is one of the most exciting—and most impactful—details you choose to finish any space in your home. And picking paint colors, for some of us, feels so much more natural than figuring out smart fridges, or counter materials, or tile grout width, or all the other questions you’ve been faced with to get a project done…
At least, you’d THINK paint color should be easier. But then you get into the nitty gritty of color, finish, brand and type, and you just have to laugh—what are “scrubbables? What do you MEAN we don’t use oil paints anymore? Why should you use ‘flat’ on a ceiling? Why should you be nervous about gloss paints in certain rooms?”
We want to keep the technical side of paint simple for you so that you can enjoy the fun part of picking your color. What’s more, paint today has evolved! You probably have more questions than you did before because of the new features and options giving you more control than ever.
You have to LIVE in that space and LOVE it, so we’re keeping the technical considerations simple so you can pick the features that are right for you and enjoy your new space, that much better suited for your likes and lifestyle.
What are “scrubbables?”
You might think scrubbable paints are the same as washable…like a “step up” from the kid-friendly washable coats. And you’d mostly be right! Think about little handprints of peanut butter and jelly all over the wall…is that something that merits a good scrub?
Scrubbable paints are, in fact, designed to endure a little more abuse. You can put some elbow grease in when removing stains, markers and the rest. This term has been in vogue recently because companies like Sherwin-Williams have improved their paints’ durability, giving rise to scrubbables over washables.
Scrubbable paints were actually developed and tested by seeing how many times a brush could run back and forth over a patch of painted wall before totally wearing away the paint film…this determined the toughness of a paint. Just be sure to look for “scrubbable” over “washable” if you know your walls will take some wear and tear!
What’s the deal with oil paint these days?
So, what’s the deal? You don’t have to use oil paints anymore? In some states you CAN’T even use oil paints?! When did that start, and what’s it about?
Oil paints have been falling in fashion for generations, but until the alternative of latex and acrylic paint was developed and perfected to today’s standards of quality, oil remained a popular choice for many homeowners.
But, why do away with oil in the first place? Let us count the reasons…
• Oil paint is harder to clean up
• Oil paint also produces VOCs (volatile organic compounds, this is bad stuff)
• It takes longer to dry…and we mean a LOT longer
• And oh, the SMELL
• It yellows over time
It’s because of the VOCs and general health hazards that many states don’t even sell certain oil-based products, home paints included. New latex and acrylic paints don’t yellow, don’t produce VOCs, and are easier to clean using just water—and they can be applied directly over old coats of oil-based paint!! Win-win.
Now that the quality of today’s paints is “up to scratch” and even SUPERIOR to oil paints in every way, it’s an easy choice for homeowners to make.
What is using a “flat paint” on a ceiling such good idea?
Ceiling surfaces tend to have more flaws than other surfaces. So, as soon as you look up, you see those long expanses of ceiling where you can painfully pick out each of those imperfections, especially when the light comes in and shadows grow deep.
Using flat paint (also called matte) can easily camouflage those imperfections because it minimizes the light bouncing off it. There’s almost no reflection or shine, which means shadows are no longer a problem. This is why it’s called “flat paint,” because it gives a look of a flatter surface.
Flat paint is more prone to stain and get dirty, however, so it’s usually best to stick to flat paint only on ceilings or on “flawed” walls that really, really need it. So, if you have kids or animals (or husbands), be careful where you choose to use flat paint—but do be sure to use it on that “fifth wall” in just about every room.
What you need to know about gloss paint
Gloss paints, on the other hand, show every…single…detail—good or bad. Glossy finishes reflect light more easily, which casts shadows into EVERY rut and showcases flaws…even the really minor ones!!
These glossy paint finishes are recommended for most finished walls in the home that are in good shape, and are also the most popular finishes for those “scrubbable” products.
So…hoping we made this all a bit SIMPLER, now you can focus on the fun part…color! Play around with color palettes and revel in one of the most exciting, last-stage steps of your project. Don’t forget to look online for fun articles and advice, like this “in-between” colors article…and lots more.
The psychology of color
If color is NOT the easiest part of the process for you, we have news. The colors you choose in your home have a big and very real impact on your mood, so it’s important to talk to someone who’s studied this psychology in order to choose wisely.
And you don’t have to look any further than a call to Robin!! She’ll be able to tell you how certain colors tend to make us feel, how the influence emotions, and how they create peace and harmony in the home.
Robin even became True Colour Certified recently to learn even more about colors and how they affect us.
We’re all about making this process as simple and enjoyable as possible. So, if you have more questions, drop them in a comment and we’ll be happy to reply!