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Old 08-10-2008, 07:58 PM   #1
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Ceiling paint versus wall paint


What do you experts out there recommend for painting ceilings? What are the advantages and disadvantages of using ceiling paint versus wall paint? My local Home Depot only offers ceiling paint in flat white (Behr and Gliddens brand)...I don't want to be restricted to just a flat white.--My kitchen and baths walls all will have satin paint and I don't think a flat sheen ceiling would go with satin sheen walls...Not to mention, since moisture is always a problem in baths especially, would'nt a satin sheen hold up better?
Can ceiling paint be tinted a bit to get perhaps an off-white or even a pastel? Anybody know of any brand of good ceiling paint that comes in a satin or eggshell sheen?
Thanks.

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Old 08-10-2008, 08:59 PM   #2
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Ceiling paint versus wall paint


As a general rule, ceiling paints are formulated with their specific purpose in mind
That is, they should cover well, stick well, and hide well, and be applied with the least amount of splatter
And they can do this at the expense of other things not needed for ceilings, but important to walls (walls need to wear better, burnish less, and wipe better)

That being said, if a customer wants a colored ceiling, I would tint a premium wall paint, not a ceiling paint, as the wall paint will take tint better and truer

It's somewhat common to tint the ceiling a percentage of the walls
As in, if the walls are "Roxbury Carmel", make the ceiling "15% Roxbury Carmel"

So, when using wall paint, you can use whichever sheen you like

For bathrooms with real or potential mold/mildew concerns, I will often use Zinsser's Perma-White, mostly eggshell, but which comes in eggshell, satin, or semi-gloss
Moisture is not a problem with that, or with my other favorite bath paint, Aura
The Aura matte (washable flat) is just as washable and mold resistant as the Aura eggshell or satin

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Old 08-10-2008, 10:42 PM   #3
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Ceiling paint versus wall paint


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What do you experts out there recommend for painting ceilings? What are the advantages and disadvantages of using ceiling paint versus wall paint? My local Home Depot only offers ceiling paint in flat white (Behr and Gliddens brand)...I don't want to be restricted to just a flat white.--My kitchen and baths walls all will have satin paint and I don't think a flat sheen ceiling would go with satin sheen walls...Not to mention, since moisture is always a problem in baths especially, would'nt a satin sheen hold up better?
Can ceiling paint be tinted a bit to get perhaps an off-white or even a pastel? Anybody know of any brand of good ceiling paint that comes in a satin or eggshell sheen?
Thanks.
Quite frankly, a ceiling paint is just a lesser quality wall paint. Like Slickshift stated, they will use some better additives in it so that it doesn't spatter as much, but you're getting a softer binder and the extender pigments in it will be softer as well. That means it simply won't stand up to hard scrubbing, but you generally don't need to scrub too many stubborn marks off ceilings.

The ONLY reason ceiling paints are flat, and white, is because of ceiling mounted light fixtures and windows that come within a few inches of the ceiling that cast light at a sharp angle to the ceiling, making any problems with the drywall or plaster on the ceiling stand out like a mountain range.

Your eye doesn't see those imperfections in the ceiling plaster or drywall per se, it just notices that light reflects off the ceiling differently in the spots where those imperfections are. And your brain figures out that if the light reflects differently, then there's a glitch in the plaster or drywall there. So, you don't actually see the imperfections, you see the way the reflected light gets messed up, and you conclude it's due to an imperfection.

By painting the ceiling with a flat paint, you scatter the reflected light in all directions, camoflaging that imperfection. That is the principle reason why new homes are painted with flat paint on the walls and ceilings, to reduce the number of complaints about glitches in the drywall.

Yes you can tint a ceiling paint to any colour that's predominantly white. The reason why they only sell white ceiling paint is that you can tint it.

But, I NEVER use ceiling paint. I use much the same paint on my ceilings as I do on my walls. Pratt & Lambert F4790 Accolade Satin on the walls and Pratt & Lambert F4090 Accolade Velvet on the ceilings, both tinted the same colour. If you're looking for a high quality paint in a satin and less glossy version, I recommend the P&L offering. But, unless you're repainting the walls the same colour, stick with the tint bases I quoted (F4790 and F4090). Both are the "high hide" tint bases for superior hide. If you're repainting the wall the same colour, then you can opt for the lower hide tint bases.

There is absolutely no reason not to use a wall paint on your ceilings.

As for your bathrooms, please heed Slickshift's advice. A paint made for bathrooms will have much more mildewcide in it than one meant for walls. And, it will be made from a plastic resin that's very water resistant. There are some very good latex paints out there, but the conditions in a bathroom are completely different than those in a kid's play room. You need a very moisture and mildew resistant paint in a bathroom, you need a highly scrubbable paint in a kid's play room, and you aren't going to find one paint that does everything best. The most water resistant resin isn't necessarily the hardest resin, and you need water resistance in a bathroom, but hardness for good scrubbability in a kid's play room.

You asked whether or not a satin sheen wouldn't stand up better in a bathroom. There is no relation between paint gloss and how well it stands up to moisture. What does make a difference is how the mildewcide in the paint leaches out, and how resistant the binder in the paint is to moisture. A paint made for bathrooms will have a mildewcide that leaches out of the paint film at the slowest rate to remain 100% effective so that it remains effective for the longest possible time. And, a paint made for bathrooms will use a binder resin that is minimally affected by moisture. Those are the two things you need for a paint to stand up well in a bathroom. Gloss affects how quickly the mildewcide leaches out of the paint, and that is why paints made for bathrooms will come only in certain gloss levels, with the amount and kind of mildewcide used matched to the gloss level of the paint.

Last edited by Nestor_Kelebay; 08-10-2008 at 10:56 PM.
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Old 08-11-2008, 12:38 PM   #4
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Ceiling paint versus wall paint


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Originally Posted by billyg View Post
What do you experts out there recommend for painting ceilings? What are the advantages and disadvantages of using ceiling paint versus wall paint? My local Home Depot only offers ceiling paint in flat white (Behr and Gliddens brand)...I don't want to be restricted to just a flat white.--My kitchen and baths walls all will have satin paint and I don't think a flat sheen ceiling would go with satin sheen walls...Not to mention, since moisture is always a problem in baths especially, would'nt a satin sheen hold up better?
Can ceiling paint be tinted a bit to get perhaps an off-white or even a pastel? Anybody know of any brand of good ceiling paint that comes in a satin or eggshell sheen?
Thanks.
FYI, flat ceilings are pretty much the norm in most houses, no matter the wall sheen. Also, I think your painting project will likely go a lot better if you get a specialty bathroom paint from Sherwin, or try out that Aura from Ben Moore. Big Box stores simply do not sell very good paint.

The paint I use on ceilings used to be Sherwin's Classic99, but I have recently switched to ProMar 200, also from Sherwin. (It was cheaper.) You don't have to use really great paint on the ceiling, but it does need to apply half-way decently, or you will end up with roller marks and spatter all over the place. I haven't done my bathrooms yet... I think it will be either PermaWhite on the ceiling or Sherwin Bathroom paint.

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Old 02-09-2012, 03:04 PM   #5
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Ceiling paint versus wall paint


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Most ceiling are painted flat, but you can useother sheens eggshell, satin, semi gloss I use Sherwin Williams 200 line and it comes it all the sheens if
you you a sheen other than flat plan on at least 2 coats for it to look good the hight the sheen the harder it is to paint. Lakewood Painters Chicago.

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Chicago, most of your responses are great........unfortunately these threads are THREE years old & the OP has long since finished his/her project!
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Old 02-09-2012, 03:15 PM   #6
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Chicago, most of your responses are great........unfortunately these threads are THREE years old & the OP has long since finished his/her project!
But then how is he gonna spam his website?
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Old 02-09-2012, 07:38 PM   #7
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