The best exterior satinwood and eggshell

Updated May 18, 2024 | Posted Apr 28, 2021 | Product Reviews, Paints | 7 comments

I’ve been a decorator for the best part of 20 years, 11 years of which were spent self-employed. I’m a little bit of a paint geek too, opting to use a range of products from different brands.

I thought I’d put pen to paper and explain a little bit about what I think are the best exterior satinwood and eggshell products on the British market. I’m going to do both eggshell and satinwood on one blog as I see them as similar products (eggshell has a sheen level of around 10%, whereas satinwood is closer to 40%). I hope you find this useful.


Sandtex Trade Eggshell X-Tra


This is an amazing product and probably the best eggshell finish for any exterior timber or metal work. Touch dry in approximately 2 – 4 hours and recoat after 16. This product is available in white, black, or any one of 2,500 tinted colours. You can buy it online, or any Crown Decorating Centre. It is important to use the Sandtex Trade Flexible Primer Undercoat when coating bare timber or metalwork.

Sandtex Trade Eggshell X-Tra is a premium product at a premium price, but worth every penny. Opacity is fantastic, ease of use is brilliant and the finish is rich and luxurious. Brush marks just seem to melt away.


The best thing about this product is it’s longevity. You must apply two full coats of the eggshell to achieve sufficient flexibility and withstand the movement of timber caused by our everchanging climate. However, if you do this, your paint finish will last for many years.

10/10 for me. This is the best exterior eggshell on the market in my opinion. Click here to see latest prices.


Dulux Ultimate Opaque


This is a solvent based, self-undercoating paint from Dulux Trade. Available online or any DDC, you can buy this product in white, black and many tints from Dulux’s vast range. I’d say the sheen level puts it in the eggshell bracket.

This is another great product which I really like, especially in colours. Opacity is fantastic in any tint, as is ease of use. The overall finish is nice too. Dulux Trade Opaque is probably my second favorite exterior eggshell product. You can buy it online, or any Dulux Decorating Centre.

8/10 – click here to see latest prices.


Johnstone’s Stormshield Satin


The first satinwood on my list of best products is Johnstone’s Stormshield. Again, this is an oil-based product available in white, black, or about a million other colours. I love this product because of the opacity the Stormshield primer has. You can paint any dark colour white by applying one coat of primer, followed by one topcoat, which is unheard of really. The downside of this product are the brush marks. No issues using it on fascia boards, but not so great on lower windows and doors.

7/10 – Click here to see latest prices.

Sikkens Satura


This is an outstanding exterior oil-based satinwood and I’d have to say it gives a better finish than anything else out there. Sikkens Satura is only available in white, grey and black. The sheen level is a little on the high side for a product of this type, but the finish is unbelievable!! It goes on so easily, opacity is spot on.  This has to be my favourite satin product as the finish is gorgeous!! Head over to your closest Dulux Decorating Centre, or click here to see online prices.


Zinsser Allcoat Satin


Zinsser Allcoat satin is the first water-based product on the list. It is available online and from many stockists in white, black, or any tinted colour. The finish is good, as is longevity. You can see brush marks if you’re not careful on application, however with a bit of care, you can achieve a nice flat finish. Zinsser Allcoat’s superpower is it’s versatility!! You can paint masonry, cladding, timber, metalwork or even uPVC. This satinwood is self-undercoating and the adhesion properties are excellent.  You can re-coat after an hour which is another bonus, however it does take around a week to fully cure and become durable. Click here to see latest prices.


Water-Based Opaques


Water-based opaques, or “barn paints” are products I don’t tend to have a lot of faith in, simply because the longevity of a lot of these products aren’t comparable to the longevity of their oil-based counterparts. That said, there are a couple of products out there which I do have faith in. The first one is Bedec which is very easy to apply, offers a great finish and will last for years.


The other product worth talking about is Valtti Opaque from Tikkurila. This is an awesome product which I’d put in the “eggshell” bracket due to it’s low sheen level. Very easy to apply, great adhesion, nice finish and will last for years and years.

I’d say this is probably up there as the best opaque paints on the market if I’m honest. Oh, it’s available in white, black, or a range of colours directly from Tikkurila online.


Final Thoughts


Satinwood and eggshell finishes are much more contemporary than the old-fashioned gloss alternatives. Choosing the correct product for your home is half the battle. An exterior paint needs to have certain qualities for me, including finish, longevity, and durability.

Oil-based paints are always going to be more durable than water-based, but I do use both types of products. Providing you carry out your prep correctly and use one of the paints on this list, you can’t go wrong.

The Best Exterior Satinwood and eggshell – Review and Guide – by Mike Gregory

Updated May 18, 2024 | Posted Apr 28, 2021 | 7 comments

About the Author

About the Author

Mike Cupit has been in the decorating industry since 2002 and has mostly worked as a Trade Decorator in the domestic sector (peoples’ homes). Self-proclaimed “product geek”, Mike has a passion for paint and decorating tools. Mike now spends most of his time testing paint products and tools, comparing them to similar products on the market, and blogging about the industry in general.


  1. Heyter :D

    Sandtex Trade Eggshell X-Tra, really? I have some painted samples of this one at home, and after more than a month from painting I can scrape it with a nail like playdough. It doesn’t harden. Paint bought in CDC. Did it happen only to me? Probably not since I found on few forums people complaining about this product. Mike giving 10/10?

  2. Tony

    Sandtex Eggshell Xtra or Johnstone’s Stormshield for oil based.
    Bedec Barn Paint, MSP or Sadolin Superdec for water based 👍

  3. Tony

    It’s also worth mentioning that I use Sandtex Eggshell in Farrow and Ball colours and instead of the Sandtex primer/undercoat I get Zinsser Coverstain tinted to the same colour… I’ve been doing this for years and never had any issues 👍

    • Jon Ackland

      What is the best primer for first coat to cut in onto the putty/glass,I’m thinking zinsser cover stain or otex adhesion primer,I’m then thinking 1 dulux exterior undercoat and 3 dulux ultimate opaque all solvent based,what’s your thoughts on zinsser all coat exterior satin solvent based please

  4. Brenda CLEWLOW

    I have painted my wardrobe doors with zinssersatin they are very streaky I have done 4 coats could I cover them with kitchen emulsion I would really appreciate your answer ?

    • Darren corrie

      Hi Unfortunately the waterbased allcoat is not great at covering , you need a completely solid base for this paint then your be ok.

  5. sunshine

    i am researching a good paint for my entire outside of my home . i live in very tropical humid weather and hot . looking for a paint that will last !


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