The Great Paint Debate
I have always been a Sherwin-Williams fan, so I usually, by default, recommend Sherwin-Williams. My very reliable painter prefers Sherwin Williams or Benjamin Moore, and to be honest, I am becoming a bigger Benjamin Moore fan. But... Occasionally someone will have a preference, for whatever reason, for a particular paint brand. And I am totally on board with using whatever paint brand you prefer; my collaborative approach is to help guide you, but ultimately, it is your home and your decision. Both brands are great, with reliable solid reputations. Let's begin by briefly touching on the PROs and CONs of the most well-known brands and introducing you to some you may have never heard of.
Most Well known Brands
Sherwin-Williams - Best Overall, 1,700 Colors.
Pros - Trusted by Pros, Durability, Great Coverage.
Cons - Expensive, Matte finish hard to work with.
VOC free Option - ProMar® 200 Zero VOC Interior Latex.
Behr - Home Depot Budget Brand, Best brands for consumers.
Pros - Good quality economic option, Self-priming.
Cons - Only sold at Home Depot, Often needs an extra coat.
VOC free Options - All are zero
Benjamin Moore - Same price point as Sherwin Williams, 3500 Colors.
Pros - Trusted by Pros, Reliable coverage, and consistency.
Cons - Dries quickly, which may result in roller lines.
VOC free Option - Eco Spec®
Glidden - Great for masonry or cement, and interiors, 1200 Colors.
Pros - Great price point, Decent color selection
Cons - Less Versatile, Needs multiple coats
VOC free Option - Glidden Premium Interior and Primer
Valspar - owned by Sherwin Williams, partners with Lowes, 1764 Colors.
Pros - decent price point, excellent color selection, Virtual color consults.
Cons - Extra prep work, multiple coats required, paint peels and chips easily.
VOC free Options - Reserve, Signature, Ultra 2000 and 4000
Kelly Moore Paints - not affiliated with Benjamin Moore, 1700 Colors.
Pros - Durable outdoors.
Cons - Weatherproof Issues, Harmful to direct sunlight.
VOC free Options - Premium Professional Interiors are considered LOW VOC.
I know over the years, I have used one of the above paint brands for one project or another, but since hanging out my interior design proverbial shingle, I have been exposed to so many new and exciting products, even paint. Full disclosure I am not affiliated with either of the two new paint companies I am introducing you to.
Farrow & Ball
Farrow and Ball Paint was created 75 years ago in the UK; they carry not only paint but a gorgeous line of modern wallpaper. Unlike regular emulsions, this paint is a water / clay-based emulsion, where most colors typically have plastics added to them. The cleanliness of the material makes them one of the most eco-friendly paints on the market, with no VOC. The almost cult-like following of the interior design community is due to the deep hues of the final results. And although the reviews are mixed, the best results require the correct preparations and a typical three-coat application. There are only 132 colors to choose from, which is great if you struggle with picking from too many options. In addition, they offer peal and stick samples, which is highly recommended because the paint is expensive at $140.00 /can and changes dramatically depending on the light and the room. So choose wisely. They have eight sheens to choose from, with the latest, Dead Matte, now available. I am personally itching to give Dead Matte a try. According to their website, "Take Dead Flat across walls, woodwork, and metal, for an effortless, full-room transformation with just one finish. The ultra-matte look makes our rich colors even richer, while the scrubbable, scuff-resistant finish is more than a match for a mess". Click on the image above to learn more about Farrow & Ball.
Clare was started in 2018 by Nicole Gibbons, an interior designer/entrepreneur. Clare helps simplify the decision-making process by offering high-quality paints in expertly curated shades. With only 60 colors in the collection (all vetted by Gibbons herself), you don't have to sort through thousands of swatches to find the perfect match. The paint has a very low odor, ZERO VOCs, and is Greenguard Gold Certified. They offer paint supplies, primer, and basic guidelines delivered directly to your door. They currently only offer two sheens, Eggshell or Trim Paint, which is the same as Semigloss, and sadly, there are no Matte options. The company also has great customer service reviews. Please read their return policy carefully if you venture into the Clare paint line. Click on the image to learn more about Clare. I have not tried either of the new brands, but they are definitely on my radar when I find a suitable space or room. The intensity of the colors is what draws me to them. I love saturated deep-hued colors; I believe they are colors you can actually feel.
And,! Finally... did you know there is a new online source where you can buy peel-and-stick paint samples rather than small containers of paint that often go to waste unless you are a DIY Diva where you creatively use up the four to five different shades of cream you bought to paint on the four walls of your bedroom trying to find the perfect cream. A sample of actual paint from Benjamin Moore is 5.99 /half a pint. At the same time, you can get an eight-pack bundle of different cream or green colors in 9" x 14.75" sized sheets for 35.00. The samples are overnighted, can be used repeatedly, and, most importantly, are better for the environment. It is always my preference to use this service.
Whether you have a brand of paint preference, need help picking the perfect color, or are unsure where to begin, I am here to help.