Valspar Trade Contract Matt Review

Updated Feb 15, 2024 | Posted Dec 1, 2022 | Product Reviews, Paints | 0 comments

At the time of writing this review, Valspar Trade have just reformulated and improved their entire range. Even though these paints are sold at B&Q, which is generally associated with retail paint for the eager DIYer, Valspar Trade is predominantly used by professional decorators. I have been using the new Valspar Trade contract matt as decorator for a few weeks now, so I thought I’d take the time to write a quick review.

This is a fully water-based emulsion for interior walls and ceilings. As with all contract matt emulsions, this paint does not contain much in the way of polymer binder, meaning it allows plaster to breath. This makes it ideal for a mist coat to prime bare plaster, and as a finish coat on newbuilds. The other thing you might use contract matt for is a finish on a ceiling.

The drying time is 2 – 4 hours and you can apply Valspar Trade Contract Matt via airless sprayer, brush or roller. You can dilute the paint, but unlike a lot of other contract matt emulsions, you can also use it neat.


My Valspar Trade Contract Matt Emulsion Review


Contract matt isn’t exactly the sexiest product in the world. It’s a cheap emulsion you use to prime bare plaster, or to freshen up a ceiling. That said, this paint feels different to anything I’ve used in the past.

A contract matt remains porous, so you expect it to drag like crazy on the second coat, but you don’t notice it as much with Valspar Trade, so it’s easier to use. Not just that, but there is another benefit; because Valspar Trade doesn’t drag as much, you’re left with a nicer finish. The paint doesn’t dry as you apply it, which cuts down on horrible brush marks, flashing and picture framing.

This is a breath of fresh air, especially when painting large open-plan ceilings. You can’t see the defects you’d normally associate with cheap emulsion. You’re left with a lovely finish.

A 12L bucket of Valspar Trade Contract Matt will set you back around £25 including the VAT, which means it’s cheaper than some of the premium contract matt products, but it certainly isn’t the cheapest either. I think it’s a fair price for a quality paint, so I’m happy to for it.

There is one negative to using Valspar Trade Contract Matt, and that is opacity. Don’t get me wrong, it does cover reasonably well, but sometimes you need to apply a third coat to achieve a solid coat on bare plaster.


Best Tools to Apply Valspar Contract Matt


My recommendation on the best tools to apply Valspar Trade Contract Matt is the same as any other contract matt really. When applying a porous material, or a product to bare plaster, you need a brush and roller which is going to hold plenty of paint. Otherwise, your ease of use and overall finish is compromised.


Paint Roller

You need a long pile roller to apply contract matt really. You won’t find better than the Purdy Colossus, which will make light work of something like this. It holds loads of paint and combats dragging. Available online by clicking here.



As for a paintbrush, I’d go for Purdy again. The Purdy Monarch elite has a thick stock, is easy to use and holds plenty of paint. It’s probably the brand leader for paintbrushes amongst professional decorators. Available online by clicking here.

Valspar Trade Contract Matt Emulsion Review – by Mike Gregory


What do Other Decorators Think About Valspar Trade Contract Matt


Clean up is easy with its spatter resistant formula. Suitable for all interior walls and ceilings, it can be applied direct to new plaster straight from the bucket.

A few years ago, I did use this paint and I wasn’t impressed. For starters the paint looked more like natural Calico than white. However, it did dry white but the opacity was poor.

Since then, Valspar Trade have upgraded their entire range, so I thought I’d try it again on bare plaster.

Normally I would buy Tikkurila Primer or Screwfix Bare Plaster as a primer, but Valspar Trade state that their contract matt is ideal and no watering down is required, so they have a edge of their competitors.

This is ideal for me as I only work in domestic homes and applying a watered-down mist coat for a primer is not ideal in this environment.

First impression of the new contract Matt is that it is no longer cream but white, very white.

The viscosity is ideal and rolls and cuts in smooth considering no water is applied.

Valspar Trade also states that their paint is spatter resistant and I must agree as my arms that are normally white during this stage looked rather clean.

After the 1st coat, the opacity looked poor. Then after 3 hours it turns solid. I tried a scratch test, and it was solid.

During the 2nd application, a strange thing happens were you go over the 1st coat it appears to lose it opacity.

The next day the ceiling was solid white, no flashing, no roller marks, just a smooth very white ceiling.

The paint comes in 10L but recently it has started in 12L. At a cost £24.

With a trade card 5%=£22.80

Or if you’re a member of an association like PDA that’s 10% £21.60.

Now I know you can buy other decent contract Matt brands slightly cheaper, but they have to be watered down for a mist coat, and are not splatter resistant, so therefore For me this paint wins over its rivals.

Daniel Wilson

Updated Feb 15, 2024 | Posted Dec 1, 2022 | 0 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.


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