A guide to different paint finishes

A guide to different paint finishes

Available to order online at B&Q

Picking a paint is much more than just deciding on a colour you like.

There’s loads of different types of finishes that can have an added effect on your room. But if you’re not a pro decorator, it can be difficult to know what the differences are and what the right choice is for you. That’s why we’re here to save the day with our guide to different finishes.



Matt paint is smooth and unlike sheen, doesn’t reflect as much light and therefore isn’t shiny. It’s ideal if you’ve got an uneven wall covered in imperfections that you want to hide.

Our wall and ceilings paint comes in matt finishes and we can match and mix 2.2 million colours!


Silk and soft sheen

Silk finishes are easy to clean and so are well suited for walls. They reflect a small amount of light and can highlight imperfections on your wall. Our silk finishes are available for wall and ceilings paint.

Soft sheen paint reflects the same amount of light as silk but is much more durable. It’s easy to clean and is perfect for your kitchen and bathroom.



Satin finishes are similar to silk but are more suitable for woodwork. Unlike silk though, it hides imperfections and can make colours appear softer.



What is eggshell paint? Well, these finishes reflect small, delicate amounts of light just like, you guessed it, an eggshell. It typically withstands staining more than matt but as all of our finishes are extra scrubbable, you’ll find that’s the case with our matt paint too.

Eggshell is perfect for interior woods and works well on furniture and skirting boards.



Gloss is most commonly used on wood and metal and reflects loads of light. It works well for paler colours but can only be used on perfectly smooth surfaces.



Smooth finishes are almost exclusively used in masonry paint and can withstand harsh weather conditions. Smooth finishes stay smooth and won’t crack, flake or peel for up to 15 years.