Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

May, 2004

Flat Paint

Q. Is the such a thing as flat enamel? I spoke with a painter who is going to paint the inside of my house and I told him I want the walls in the living room and hallways flat but where we can wash them because of kids finger prints, he said he can use flat enamel. Is there such a thing.

A. Yes, there are flat enamel paints. The flat enamel paint is what was used before the water base latex Kemtone wall paint marketed back in the 1940s. Keep in mind, most flat enamel paints have a very strong chemical odor which will linger for several months.

On the other hand, there are good quality acrylic latex water based wall paint that will offer excellent washability. When was the last time you asked a good quality paint store for their best brand of washable flat wall paint, and were will to pay the extra 6 or 7 dollars for the quality? Most of us are motivated to paint a room in the house when we see the 2 for 1 sale.

If you shop around, you will find and be convinced that flat latex can be washed, cleaned and provide a durable coating.

Best regards,

Tom Burke

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