I’m a professional decorator with 20 years’ experience. I concentrate on the domestic sector (people’s homes). In this blog, I want to talk about whether satinwood is better than gloss, and the pros and cons of each product. I hope you find it useful.
Modern Gloss Paints
I really like a gloss finish on exterior trim. I think it stands proud, almost like your house is wearing a suit. However, it can look a little dated on the interior of a property. Not just that, but gloss has changed over the years, and it now comes with certain problems.
Oil-based gloss contains a lot of alkyd oil. One property of alkyd is that it starts to turn yellow over time. Once upon a time this wasn’t too much of a problem because manufacturers could load the paint with chemicals known as VOCs. These chemicals slowed the yellowing process. However, around 10 years ago, EU restrictions put a limit on the amount of VOC’s a manufacturer was allowed to use in paint. The result is modern gloss paint discolours rather quickly. This is a particular problem inside a property as lack of natural light can speed the process even further.
The science of gloss paint is changing things a little bit. Water-based and hybrid gloss paints are now becoming a viable alternative, but they’re not quite there yet. Water-based gloss doesn’t tend to level off like its oil-based counterpart, so the finish is left lacking. That said, while the overall quality of gloss has diminished, I still think the hybrid gloss products (a compromise between oil and water) are better than most of the full-oil versions.
Modern Satinwood Products
Satinwood is a different ball game. The overall look is a lot more contemporary for starters. Oil-based satinwood will still discolour, but the paint does not contain as much alkyd oil as gloss, so the discolouring process takes a lot longer. A good quality oil-based satinwood such as Dulux Trade or Crown Trade will keep its colour for years.
Water-based satinwood paint is also good. The finish is just as good as oil-based, it is just as durable, and it will never discolour. You may need a separate adhesion primer, or apply an extra coat of satinwood, but the ease of use, environmental benefits, and the easier clean-up more than make up for this.
Best Satinwood and Gloss Products
I think you can tell from the rest of this blog that I’m very honest. I thought it might be helpful if I gave you my opinion on the best satinwood and gloss products available.
When choosing a gloss, I tend to go for hybrid products. My preferred brand is Teknos Futura Aqua 90. This is available online in white or a variety colours. You must use the Futura undercoat and achieve a solid colour before applying the gloss, because the opacity of the gloss isn’t the best. Ease of use and overall finish are great! Use a mini roller and laying off brush if you intend to use this product on large, flat surfaces.
There are plenty of good satinwood products. Dulux trade do great self-undercoating oil-based satin product. This paint retains its colour for a long period, is easy to use, and leaves a great finish. You can buy Dulux Trade satinwood from any Dulux Decorating Centre, but unless you’re entitled to a trade discount, it will almost certainly be cheaper to buy this product online by clicking here.
As far as good water-based satinwood paints go, I’m going to mention two. Benjamin Moore Scuff X is widely regarded as the best satinwood on the market, although it is very expensive. Available online by clicking here.
If you want a value water-based satinwood that is still great quality, look at the WRX satin. Only available in Brilliant White, but it’s fully water-based and leaves a fantastic finish. Available online by clicking here.
Is satinwood better than gloss? – by Mike the Decorator