The Ultimate Guide to Buying Paints for Your Home

Paints for Your Home
Photo by David Waschbüsch

If you’re looking for ways to add personality, color, and style to your home without breaking the bank, then painting is a great way to go. Picking out the right type of paint can be overwhelming though, so here’s what you should know before choosing paints for your home.

Research your options and consider the environment.

Before you dive into buying paints for your home, it’s important to do your research and consider the environment. Look into low-VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) and zero-VOC paints that are non-toxic and safer for the environment. Additionally, investigate different types of paint finishes, such as semi-gloss, satin, eggshell, etc., to figure out which suits your needs best.

Factor in the color temperature, finishes, and sheen of the paint.

The color temperature, finishes, and sheen of paint can create a huge impact on the overall look and feel of any room. It’s good to know that cool colors can make the space seem smaller and more closed-in, while warm colors can make the space appear larger. A semi-gloss finish provides a subtle shine, satin adds a hint of luster, eggshell has a very low shine and matte has a classic velvet-like appearance. Additionally, the sheen is usually a measure of how shiny or reflective a paint color is. If you want most wall surfaces to be dull in glossiness but still wipeable when necessary, then consider using an eggshell or even satin finish for your walls.

Divide rooms by purpose and difficulty of painting before you buy paint.

Before you start buying paint, it’s important to divide the rooms in your home into different categories. For example, if a room is rarely used or guest bedrooms, go for paints that can be easily washed and wiped when needed and they don’t need frequent repainting. But if your goal is to add an accent wall to a frequently used space like the living room or kitchen, then choose a more durable finish such as semi-gloss. This will give you just enough shine and makes them resistant to dirt and potential stains.

Calculate the “footage” of your space to determine how much paint you will need to purchase.

Now that you’ve divided your rooms into categories, it’s time to figure out exactly how much paint you will need for each room. To do this, measure the height and length of each wall in the space. Multiply those numbers together to get the area of the wall (in square feet), then add the total footage of each wall together—this is approximately how many gallons of paint you need to purchase. Don’t forget to factor in any ceiling areas or other walls, like closets.

Make sure you purchase the right accessories and tools along with your paints.

When purchasing paint, make sure to also buy the right accessories and tools. Before you even think about picking up a brush or roller, you should pick up painter’s tape, drop cloths, and an edger tool for trimming around edges. Depending on the quality of paint you want to use, you may want to purchase special primers that can help with coverage or sealants that can protect the surface from mildew and damage from weathering.

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