Retail Paint Vs Trade Paint – What is the Difference?


The difference in retail paint Vs trade paint is quite significant and it’s important to know what you’re buying. Just because a tin of paint has the word “Dulux” or “Crown” on it, do not necessarily jump to the conclusion you’re buying quality.


The way a paint manufacturer designs a product is by first looking at the target audience, working out the cost a tin of paint should be for a retailer to sell a high volume. Then produce the best product they can for that budget.


Retail paint, the type you’ll find in places like B&Q or Homebase, is made for the DIY market. The paint is of a lower quality, made from cheaper materials and sold to people who don’t really know the difference.


Trade paint, the type you find at trade counters is made for the professional decorator. The paint may cost a lot more; however, it is made from better quality materials and the product will perform to a higher level.


Some of the qualities that lack in retail paint, Vs trade paint are opacity, ease of use, discolouration over time and durability. Not just that but trade paint will normally go further.

Dulux Matt Emulsion Vs Dulux Trade Vinyl Matt


I could have chosen any one of a thousand examples, but I chose an obvious one. Let’s talk about Dulux matt emulsion in comparison to its trade counterpart which is Dulux Trade vinyl matt.


  • Opacity – Not as good, meaning you may have to apply an additional coat.


  • Durability – try to wipe a wall finished in Dulux matt and you will remove the paint. Trade paint will stand up to a light clean. This is due to the amount of polymer binders in each product.


  • Ease of use – Dulux matt remains porous, meaning moisture is drawn out of the first coat into the second and causes your brush or roller to drag. This is not only annoying, buy will restrict your capabilities when cutting a straight line. It will also cause brush and roller marks.


  • Price – Dulux matt emulsion is about half the price as Dulux trade vinyl matt


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