Ultimate guide to the best paint types

What are the various paint types?

There’s a paint type for every single circumstance and choice. Here’s a quick rundown of typical paint types, consisting of:

  • Oil-based paint
  • Water-based paint
  • Enamel paint
  • Primer
  • Low poisonous paint
  • Eco-friendly paints
  • Lead-free paint
  • Paint ingredients
  • Spray paint
  • Chalk paint
  • Special surfaces

A fresh coat of paint can invigorate and change any space in your house. If you choose to deal with the painting yourself, instead of working with a painter, you’ll require the ideal products.

With a lot of different choices to pick from, discovering the very best paint type for each function can be intimidating. To assist you start, here’s our guide to paint types and when they must and should not be utilized. And we strongly recommend getting a quote from painting contractors. Affordable Painters provides the best services in SA. 


Comprehending paint shines

Among the very first choices to make when selecting paint types is what kind of surface you desire. Paints are categorized by shine, or the quantity of light that’s shown from the paint surface area. The complete series of paint shine types is:

Flat: the least reflective choice. Flat paint tends to be more affordable, but it will not be appropriate for surface areas that are often touched or exposed to the components.

Matte: a little shinier and more long-lasting than a flat surface, matte paint is frequently utilized for ceilings and can conceal small defects in surface areas.

Eggshell: a happy medium in between matte and gloss, eggshell paint looks flat from many angles while being more long-lasting and much easier to clean up.

Satin: a little glossier than eggshell, satin paint can be a useful alternative for any room in the house, unless you choose a more matte appearance.

Semi-gloss is a hard-wearing paint that can make wall colours pop. Semi-gloss paint is generally moisture-resistant too, making it ideal for restrooms and kitchen areas.

Gloss: the most reflective alternative, gloss paint can be appealing in the ideal settings and is the easiest to tidy up. On the drawback, it’s typically more expensive and can highlight defects in surface areas.

Oil-based paint

If you require a hard-wearing paint that will withstand regular usage and abuse, select oil-based paint (likewise called solvent-based paint). These waterproof paints can be perfect for outside painting, and they’ll last longer than water-based paints on doors and furnishings.

The drawback is that they take longer to dry, in some cases, approximately 24 hours, depending upon paint brand names.

Water-based paint

Water-based paints (likewise called latex-based paints) are a practical alternative for ceilings and walls that do not get a great deal of wear and tear. They dry faster than oil-based paints, so it’s possible to get more coats in a day.

The drawback is that these paints are less resilient, so they aren’t ideal for high-traffic surface areas or many outside painting tasks.

Enamel paint

More of a variety grade than a variety of paint types, paints classified as “enamel” provide a more long-lasting and longer-lasting surface than basic paints.

The majority of enamel paints are oil-based, but water-based variations are offered too, which can be ideal for furnishings and cabinets.


The guide isn’t strictly about painting, but it’s a vital part of the procedure in many cases, especially if you’re painting a surface area for the very first time. The guide serves as a seal to enhance the adhesion of paint to surface areas, assisting it to last longer.

You can, in some cases, do without guide if you have strong paint, but guide must never ever be utilized as a leading coat by itself.

Low harmful paints

If you’re stressed over the toxicity of paints, select items with a low level of unpredictable natural substances (VOCs). Typically, oil-based paints are more poisonous than water-based paints, and the more powerful a paint smells, the more hazardous it is.

All the significant paint brand names produce low-harmful alternatives.

Environmentally friendly paints.

If you’re worried about the environment or the possible health dangers of VOCs in paint, try to find items that utilize 100% natural active ingredients, such as plant-based or clay-based paints.

These paints take longer to dry, but the end results are equivalent to basic paint types.

Lead-free paint

No paint is completely lead-free, but all paint offered in South Africa since 1997 has needed to consist of no greater than 0.1% lead material, due to issues over health and wellness from lead exposure. You can consult paint brand names to discover just how much lead their items include.

If you’re worried that your existing home paint may contain lead, you must speak to an expert about safe lead paint elimination instead of running the risk of eliminating it yourself and perhaps putting your family at risk.

Paint ingredients

In addition to looking great, paint can likewise add to the insulation in your house when you purchase insulating paint or paint ingredients and include these in your paint.

These can be utilized with all paint types to help show more heat far from your house in the warmer months and decrease heat loss in the cooler months.

Spray paint

Spray painting can be an effective method to paint furnishings and other items in and out of the house, and even your walls if you have a creative streak.

While spray painting can be a lot faster than standard painting, it’s important that you safeguard yourself from the fumes and just spray outdoors or in a well-ventilated location.

Chalk paint

Not to be puzzled with blackboard paint, chalk paint is an environmentally-friendly water-based paint that uses exceptional adhesion to surface areas. You can likewise purchase chalk paint powder and include it in basic paint.

While chalk paint usually leaves a matte surface, this flexible paint can be integrated with other paint types to accomplish shiny or textured outcomes.

Unique paint surfaces

If you desire something more fascinating than a matte or gloss surface, check out distressed paint and other textured surfaces.

Offered by a lot of paint brand names, these paints can mimic a range of surfaces, from providing walls with a genuine aged look to natural stone surfaces for kitchen area counters.

How to select the ideal paint

Now that you’ve got a concept of the most typical paint types and options, how do you select the very best paint or paints for your task? Here are some pointers for indoor and outdoor painting.


Interior paint

The very best paint type for indoor usage depends upon what you’re painting and where.

A gloss or semi-gloss shine uses much better defense from wetness on restroom and kitchen area walls and looks terrific on wood furnishings. However, a matte surface can look more advanced on walls and ceilings, along with being more affordable. Eggshell or satin surfaces might be a perfect happy medium.

Whichever paint type you choose, it’s suggested that you utilize low-VOC paint to decrease fumes and check out paint ingredients if you wish to enhance the insulation in your walls.

Outside, paint

Outside paint typically requires more skillful application than indoor paint, making a semi-gloss or gloss surface better than matte paints. If you do not like oil-based paints, you might discover water-based enamel paints that are simply as strong as some brand names.

You ought to likewise check that items are resistant to UV fading if they’ll remain in direct sunlight and moisture resistant if they’ll be exposed to the elements.

What’s the very best white paint?

White is the most common paint color in houses, so you may believe that all white paint is basically the same. Not at all! Even a small distinction in shade can make a huge difference in how a space looks, and white is typically combined with another colour for discreetly various impacts.

The bottom line to keep in mind when searching for paint aisles is that paint constantly looks different in your house than it does in the shop. Many paint brand names produce little test tins that you can take home and try. These are more reliable than examples to assist you choose which white is best and prevent making a costly error.

How to select paint colors

There are no set guidelines when it comes to picking colors for your house, but you ought to think of what impacts you wish to attain. For instance, a function wall can bring life into a space, but it can, in some cases, be subduing. You need to also think about how paint will search in various light conditions to prevent dissatisfaction.

If you do not currently have a palette in mind for your painting task, an excellent beginning point is to think about how colour impacts your state of mind. If you wish to create a specific environment in your house or garden, some paint colors will assist you in attaining this, while others will work against it.

Discover paint providers or painters near you.

If you’re prepared to get started with your painting task, a regional paint provider can supply the paint and tools you require for your task, in addition to deal recommendations about how to attain the outcomes you desire.

If you’d rather leave the task to an expert, compare quotes from painters near you to make certain you’re getting the very best offer.

Depending upon the size of the task, working with a painter in South Africa can cost anywhere between R25,500 and R200,000 (consisting of labour and products).

To see more ‘price of’ guides visit the ‘Cost of homes services‘ page to see a full list.


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