Flat or Eggshell Paint?

Painting your home can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to feel like you’re in the middle of a great debate. Whether flat or eggshell paint is best for this project depends on who’s doing them and what they want from their finished product! So let me tell ya something: I’ve Got The Answer That Will Solve All These Problems At Once (and Maybe Even Make Yourself Look Good Along With It).

I know there are those two schools we always hear about – one says to use FLAT; another claims EDGE IS better-but. Here’s my takeaway from

If you are painting interior walls, choose eggshell paint. It has a slightly higher sheen than flat paint, making it less likely to show dirt and fingerprints. Plus, it is easier to clean. If you are painting exterior walls or trim, choose flat paint. It will help hide imperfections and give your home a more traditional look.

Let’s start

First and foremost, there are many sheens to choose from when it comes to painting. The finish of the paint, or how glossy it is, is referred to as its Sheen. Different paint manufacturers may provide consumers with a variety of Sheen options. 7 Sheens are available from Benjamin Moore, ranging from lowest to highest:

Flat or Eggshell Paint?
  • flat
  • matte
  • eggshell
  • pearl/low luster
  • satin
  • semi-gloss
  • high gloss

We recommend using a sheen appropriate for the type of surface you are working on. For example, suppose your project will be sitting against wood furniture. In that case, it should have less shine so that any imperfections in paintwork do not show up when placed next to its intended destination – this can make them more forgiving regarding variations during production as well!

However, there may come times when an increased level or durability is desired: say someone wants their painting ready before being moved from one location to another by a moving company who doesn’t take care handling items carefully…then perhaps choosing something like satin finish would suit what’s needed here nicely.

Adding to the confusion, different paint lines from the same brand may offer different or limited sheen options. For example, you can get sheen options in flat, matte, eggshell, satin, and semi-gloss with Benjamin Moore’s Regal Select line, whereas its Advance line is only available in matte, satin, semi-gloss, and high gloss.

Sherwin-Williams, on the other hand, has fourteen sheen choices! But let’s not get sidetracked. I want to focus on the two most popular wall sheens.

Should I use flat or eggshell paint for my walls?

The main advantage of flat paint is that it does an excellent job of “hiding” flaws and achieving a smooth finish. Flat paint is always the better choice if you’re planning to do any painting yourself.

Drywall mud is a subfloor material that costs less, hides faults in drywall well, and can be readily repaired without revealing roller marks. Builders and painters in new construction generally use it.

After the walls of a room have been prepped, painters frequently return to complete the work. Maybe an outlet has to be relocated or furnishings brought in that scratch up the paint on the wall.

If your child throws a ball in the house and leaves a mark on the wall, you can quickly fix it by using leftover paint without worrying about affecting the wall finish. Builders and painters prefer to use flat paint because it requires less work.

However, flat paint is recommended for ceilings and low-traffic areas for a purpose. It isn’t as long-lasting or simple to clean as eggshell or other higher-sheen paints. As a result of this, if you have dogs or children (or even husbands) that touch or thump against walls, flat paint will easily scratch.

To avoid permanent damage, it’s best to clean dirt and stains from your walls as soon as possible. The magic eraser sponge is perfect if you’re careful not to scrub too hard–you might take the paint right off!

As a Color Designer/Consultant, I typically recommend eggshell paint for walls because it has multiple benefits for people living in the home. Eggshell paint is easier to clean, covers better, wears better, and lasts longer than flat paint.

You can easily clean scuffs and marks from your walls with a warm, damp cloth if you use eggshell paint rather than flat paint. The eggshell finish lasts many years longer than flat, so it’s better for the end user.

Eggshell paint, on the other hand, seems to be more expensive. The higher sheen gives the depth and richness of the color. Reflection of light adds depth and richness to color schemes. Color depth makes colors fascinating and lively, especially if you’re painting neutral hues. I also request an eggshell finish for property staging.

There are two drawbacks to eggshell paint, but I’d like to counter them both:

1. Eggshell paint costs more.

This is true, but the benefits of eggshell paint usually outweigh the additional cost. Eggshell paint is more durable and easier to clean than a flat paint, so it will last longer and look better over time.

Yes, it does. However, only a few more bucks! The cost of Sherwin-Williams paint is about $1.50 per gallon more, while the price of Benjamin Moore paint is about $2 per gallon greater. So, yes, the paint costs roughly 5% extra.

2. Eggshell paint can show wall and application imperfections.

A dull, flat paint job accentuates poor drywall work or other surface flaws, to be sure. Flat paint is the way to go if you want to minimize textured walls and ceilings.

You don’t have to be a professional painter to use this product; if you make mistakes, they won’t be as noticeable. If you need to touch up a wall, you can repaint the small area.