Tikkurila Paint Review – written by a decorator

Updated May 2, 2024 | Posted Aug 28, 2017 | Professional insight, Product Advice | 1 comment

I have used quite a few different products from Tikkurila in the last year. As a general rule for the brand I think they are brilliant. I have found their sales team to be extremely helpful, and usually available 7 days a week and during unsociable hours. There are not many firms that offer that kind of service.

As for the products in general, they are very competitively priced and work out way more cost effective than all of the smaller independent firms, and even most of the usual suspects like Johnstones, for comparable products. Whenever I have had an issue with anything, my rep (Ben Adams) is always available to make sure any problem is rectified, and when advice on products has been needed, he has been able to help specify the most suitable product.

I have used a variety of products that I have applied via airless spray, as well as brush and roller. I have done individual reviews for the products below. This is my Tikkurila Paint review, I hope you find it useful.


Superwhite – Perfect for ceilings. I have rolled this a s well as sprayed. In both cases this has been a very solid flat matt finish that seems to hide a multitude of plasterers/dry-liners sins. Slightly lilac hue next to brilliant white, but not overly noticeable unless you are looking for it. Probably my 1st choice for ceilings now, after using Ultra Matt from Dulux on areas with critical lighting this is just as good, yet far cheaper.


Tikkurila Anti-Reflex2 – Another ceiling paint. This time it is a dead flat luxurious finish which eliminates brush and roller marks, as well as imperfections to plaster work. This product is fairly durable and available in white, or any pale colour. Mike Cupit did a pretty good Anti-Reflex review recently.


Optiva Primer – Effectively a contract matt. I have only sprayed this as a mist coat on new plaster, but found it went on lovely without thinning. Has a nice flat finish to it, although slightly chalky. I had to make sure I gave it a light sand before the next coat went on, to make sure the surface was solid enough. Very good value for money.


Optiva Colour – Vinyl matt, I have applied this via brush and roller to new and existing walls and ceilings on a refurb job in Central London. I found it needed thinning quite a lot to get a nice flow, and the lighter colours didn’t cover very well at all. The darker colours covered better, and looked great after 2 coats. In all honesty this is probably my least favourite of all Tikkurila products. The price is very low again, but I would personally choose Cova Plus from Johnstones over this.


Optiva 5 – Durable Matt. I have used 100s 0f litres of this product this year with varied results. I find the 9 litre containers seem to contain a lot of lumps, due to the high latex content in the paint. I would highly recommend straining this before use, especially the darker colours. Again this product needs thinning a fair bit to help with the flow. I have found the 1st coat goes on and looks awful, but when the second goes on it is perfect.


Any filling after the first coat, once spotted in, covers like a dream. I have used many different colours including black and have had no flashing or grinning at all. I have had a couple of issues with this product: 1) I had a fully cured wall being wiped with a damp cloth and the colour changing slightly and flashing badly, then requiring another coat. 2) Not sure if the substrate was a little chalky, but found the paint went a little too rubbery on the wall (it does have a very high latex content) and when sanded, peeled and bubbled a little like a vinyl silk can if power sanded and the friction heats it up. All in all this is a decent product and yet again, a very good value for money. One of the best durable durable matts arounf


Optiva 3 – This is a variation of Tikkurila Optiva 5. The only real difference is the sheen level, which is slightly lower. Tikkurila are very good when it comes to emulsion, and this is their best product by far. It leaves a very flat matt, no roller marks or flashing. Great depth of colour and finish too. I would highly recommend it to anyone.


Helmi Primer/Helmi 30 – I have found these products very similar each other so will review them as a pair. I have used these in white and a sandstone colour. I find they are a little thick to brush, compared to the Armstead Quick Dry Satin, which I have used for about 5 years, but compare in consistency to Isomat Aqua Satin and Caparol PU Satin.

Covering ability in white I think is too transparent, and always seems to need 1 more coat than expected. The sandstone went fine in 2. When dry and cured, the finish on this product is solid and the satin has a nice sheen level. I find the finish far nicer when sprayed, but feel it looks a little ‘orangepeely’ when it first goes on. As it dries, it really tightens up and leaves a lovely smooth finish. My preference of primer is Caparol Haftprimer, due to it being more of an adhesion primer, but mainly for the opaqueness being superior to the helm primer. To brush, I still prefer the Armstead for application but find the Helmi 30 a more hardwearing topcoat. For spraying purposes I like the Helmi a lot but prefer the Akvi- Top 30.


Akvi Top 30 – This is a spray only product which is rapid drying. This can be second coated after 30 minutes, which is a massive timesaver when working on certain projects. I absolutely love this product. It’s a far thinner material than the Helmi, and sprays on lovely and flat. You have to move far quicker due to the viscosity but it goes on so smooth. When dry this is just as solid as any other w/b satin although a slightly duller sheen for a satin. Again as with the Helmi, the white is fairly transparent but the fact you can re-coat so quickly means its less hassle having to do the extra coat. The Akvi Top is reasonably priced, although one of the more expensive products in the range.


Multi Stop – A water based stain blocker for knots and tannin. I used this on some oak doors, which I sprayed. After the first coat went on the bleed through happened rapidly. I was quite disappointed, but let it dry and gave it a second. It sprays nicely, slightly thinner than the Helmi but thicker than Akvi-Top and more opaque than both. The second coat went on and the bleed had stopped, although I don’t think I would choose this over Zinsser BIN as my first choice product for blocking tannin. Click here to see a full review.

For more information on Tikkurila, click here to visit their website.

Blog written by James Wildish – Professional Painter and Decorator

Updated May 2, 2024 | Posted Aug 28, 2017 | 1 comment

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 Comment

  1. Simon Young

    I agree with this review, except the multi stop review. It is simply awful stuff. Easily the single worst Tikkurila product I’ve used. The rest of the range is bang on


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *