COAT Paint Review and Guide

Updated Jun 13, 2024 | Posted Sep 13, 2022 | Product Reviews, Paints | 13 comments

I’m a professional decorator, and like most other decorators, I tend to stick to trade paint, rather than designer products. Some designer paints perform well, but others don’t warrant the large price tag. It sometimes feels as though you’re paying extra for sophisticated marketing tactics, rather than a premium quality paint.

With that in mind, I’m going to approach this COAT paint review as a decorator, and talk about each product in turn, discussing its performance honestly.

But before we get into all that, let’s briefly look at COAT as a business. Feel free to skip ahead to the products section of this review if you’d prefer.

COAT is a designer brand, as such, everything associated with it has an “expensive feel”. From website to social media, and the actual products themselves. Heck, it even smells expensive. All the branding you’d expect an interior designer to lap up. I love the Pop Art style labelling that comes on the tins. This makes it stand out from all other paint brands on the market.

If, like me, you’re a professional, then you can open a trade account with COAT. This allows you access to an extended colour range, trade discount, quicker ordering facilities, and even colour matching. I may be bias, but I think more designer paint brands should look after trade customers in this way.

You don’t even need to be a decorator to get a discount. At the time of writing this review, COAT is running a “refer a friend” scheme, which entitles both you and your friend to a 10% discount. Anyway, that’s enough about the business, let’s get down to the products.


COAT Flat Matt Review


This is a low-sheen, durable emulsion for interior ceilings and walls. The opacity is fantastic, and you can prime bare plaster with a diluted coat of Flat Matt, negating the need for a separate product.

I have used low-sheen emulsions before, and there are plenty of good products of this type on the market. One thing that sets COAT Flat Matt apart from the rest, is its ease of use. You’d normally expect products like this to drag, resulting in brush marks. COAT Flatt Matt doesn’t drag at all, meaning it’s a joy to use, and brush marks are non-existent.


COAT Flat Matt leaves a very desirable, contemporary “chalky” finish. The depth of colour and subtleties are gorgeous. You seem to be able to pick up hints of different shades in different lights. This is easily one of the best emulsion products I’ve used.

I have tested this product thoroughly, trying my best to make it fail. For instance, I tried applying it with a low-quality roller to make it flash, but it didn’t. I used a strong colour, then tried to touch it up, which it did perfectly. I tried applying it to an old alkyd coating and tested it for adhesion, it adhered beautifully. The list goes on! I’m struggling to find words to describe this paint, so all I’m going to say, is this emulsion is genuinely perfect in every way.


COAT Soft Sheen Review


This is another durable emulsion for interior walls and ceilings. As the name suggests, it does have a little bit of a sheen to its finish. I used to use soft sheen all the time as a decorator, but it seems to be less popular now, with most people opting for matt. That said, soft sheen does have its place. It makes the perfect product for bathrooms and kitchens due to its waterproof nature.

COAT soft sheen is a great emulsion. The opacity and ease of use are fantastic, but, like any other COAT product, it’s the finish that makes it stand out.

Most Trade soft sheen emulsion products look cheap, I’m sorry, but they do. You can see roller marks, brush marks, and the overall appearance looks plasticky – Not with COAT. There are none of the defects normally associated with soft sheen, plus you still see the depth of colour and subtleties that you would do with a luxuriously rich matt.

Moreover, this is the only soft sheen emulsion I have used in a long time that you can use in white and cover a solid colour in two coats!

I do have one little gripe with this paint. It pulls on itself, meaning when you cut a wall in, then try to roll it, the roller pulls on the paint you applied with a brush. It’s quite common with paints like this and there is a simple solution. All you need to do is cut in your wall, leave it long enough for your cutting in to dry, then roll your wall afterwards. It may take longer, but your finish will look fantastic.


COAT Eggshell Review


COAT eggshell is a fully water-based paint for interior trim such as skirting boards, doors, and windows. Being fully water-based, it will never discolour over time. This paint is described as “self-priming”, which basically means it will adhere to old alkyd coatings (like oil-based gloss), without the need for a separate product.


I’m used to reviewing water-based trim paints on the Decorators Forum UK, because of the shift away from oil-based coatings. The whole industry is changing, and water-based technology is rapidly developing.

COAT eggshell is one of the best products of its type. The ease of use is fantastic, the opacity is, quite frankly, amazing, and brush marks just melt back into the painted surface. The overall finish is different to any other trade eggshell I’ve ever used; It’s softer and more subtle. I know it’s more expensive than any of the trade alternatives, but you can genuinely see the difference. There’s a gulf in quality, with COAT coming out on top.


Brand Summary

COAT Paint Review and Guide - Decorator's forum UK

A designer paint range that offers every product you might need to decorate your home.

Product Brand: COAT

Editor's Rating:


  • Lovely colours with a real depth.
  • Fantastic quality.
  • Luxury paint.
  • Water-based.


  • Expensive (but worth it).
  • Their website is centred around shopping by colour rather than product. This is probably ideal for an Interior Designer or even a homeowner, but as a Decorator, I know what product I want, so I want to find it quickly and then worry about colour afterwards.

Final Thoughts


I was genuinely sceptical before I used COAT products for the first time. As a decorator, I know retail paints are made to a tight budget. Trade paints are made to a higher budget, but need to perform well. Designer paints such as Farrow and Ball, or Little Greene, are developed to target the higher end of the market, but are often lower quality than some of the trade alternatives.

I have been completely honest in my COAT paint review. I know it’s expensive, but I think the overall quality of these products make them stand out from other paint brands on the market.

Updated Jun 13, 2024 | Posted Sep 13, 2022 | 13 comments

About the Author

About the Author

Mike Gregory is a Professional Painter and Decorator who works in the Northwest of England. He mainly sub-contracts for large decorating firms and works on a wide variety of projects.


  1. Dee

    Super helpful, thank you

  2. jack

    Great review! On one of the dark blue coat peel/stick samples I noticed it scratched easily with a fingernail. How have you found the paint when on the wall?

    • Sean Walsh

      I’m just about to start a project which the client wants to use coat paint. Glad to see a good review9

    • Claire

      I’m using it. It’s rubbish. Maybe on walls with little traffic but, I’m the hallway it’s a nightmare.
      Better off with something like a chalk/ mineral paint.

      • Mike Cupit

        That’s strange. What is it about the paint you don’t like?

  3. Kendall Braddock

    Very disappointed is how I best sum it up. A 5 ltr tin arrived (not cheap) but the blue (2am) was perfect for a feature wall. Started by giving it a good stir, and then struggled to give the wall a coat without little flecks of white appearing – they appeared blue but when you touched them it went white so clearly the paint haddn’t mixed correctly. Ruined a whole wall….had to give it a light sand and start again with V&Co paint. Before I did that reported it to Coat and sent photos as per their request and they said basically ‘oh dear’ and would consider giving me a 1ltr can to finish the job! Crap customer service if you need it so beware and I hope you get a properly mixed can because if you don’t……

  4. Michael Brown

    I found it excellent; any issues will be down to poor surface prep.

  5. Carrie

    I want the slightly higher sheen of the soft sheen, but I want to paint windows, panelling and shutters – do I have to use the eggshell and have only 10% sheen? Does it really matter?

  6. Ian

    I found it easy to use, opacity was good and the finish looked great (this was the flat matt).

  7. Claire Boyling

    Can I pick your brains please! I have a plain raspberry colour wallpaper in my living room and I want to change the look. Can I paint over it with a much lighter COAT pink paint or do I need to strip it off?

  8. Claire Boyling

    Can I pick your brains please! I have a plain raspberry colour wallpaper in my living room and I want to change the look. Will I be able to paint over it with a much lighter COAT pink paint or do I need to strip it off?


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