Eggshell Vs Satin

Everyone who knows about the terms agrees that the sheen or finish, though frequently overlooked, is equally as significant as the hue. Different sheen levels can give dimension to a space and change how colors seem. Sheen describes how much light a paint finish reflects (how glossy it is). Flat (or matte) and glossy are two common degrees of glossiness in a coating.

While flat paints diffuse light in various directions, glossy paints are lustrous and reflect most light in the specular (mirror-like) direction. The gloss level can also impact the apparent shade of paint. 

While there are many different kinds of sheen, this article discusses the differences between eggshell vs satin paint, when to use each, and why sheen matters. Let’s get started!

What is eggshell paint? 

It has a low sheen suggestive of flat or matte, but the eggshell finish is far more durable than its namesake. It is consistently popular with professional and amateur painters alike.

Widely available in a variety of interior paints, eggshell (and its similar—but not identical—sheen sibling, low luster) offers an easy-to-clean, practically shine-free finish that is suitable for most rooms in a home, including family rooms and corridors. Although it has a softer glow than flat or matte finishes, it reflects more light.

However, it is not as glossy as satin paint. An eggshell paint finish has a slightly greater shine than a matte or flat paint finish. An eggshell finish’s low reflectivity makes it ideal for concealing brushstrokes, minor drywall dings, and imperfections on painted walls. Eggshell paints are significantly more straightforward to clean than a flat paint, which has no reflection.

Additionally, compared to flat paint, they could bring out the pigments in the paint color more. Consider repainting matte finish paint with eggshell paint if you discover brushstrokes and other application flaws on your painted walls.

What is satin paint?

Often mistaken for other finishes, satin has a greater gloss and is more durable and stain-resistant than lesser sheens like eggshells.

Satin paint works best in areas that need more definition. Highlight windows, shutters, trim, and even inside doors with their particular brilliance. Consider satin or soft gloss for front doors for a rich, lustrous appearance where architectural details like beveling and paneling are typical.

In high-traffic areas, including living rooms, family rooms, dining rooms, kid’s rooms, and entryways, satin finishes are ideal for painting molding and walls because they are scuff-resistant. Its medium-luster finish is suitable for painting kitchen cabinets and woodwork.

Eggshell vs. Satin: What is the difference between eggshell vs satin paint?

With so many views regarding the best type of paint finishes, finding the ideal sheen for your project might be difficult, but you don’t need to be a professional painter to finish your paint job.

1. Sheen of the Paint: Compared to satin paint, eggshell paint has a lesser sheen that is virtually non-reflective. Eggshell paint’s lower gloss sheen makes it better at concealing flaws like uneven brushstrokes on the surface of your walls. Satin paint is ideal for showcasing the definition of decorative surfaces like cabinets and moldings due to its higher-gloss finish.

2. Durability of the Paint: Eggshell paint is a well-liked compromise that offers more durability than satin paint but less than matte paint. Paint with a higher sheen resists stains, mildew, and scratches better, making it perfect for high-moisture spaces like bathrooms. The most durable paint is high-gloss, yet some spaces may feel cold due to its high reflectivity. Select a satin finish for paint to offer good durability without the reflection of high-gloss finishes.

3. Cost of the Paint: Compared to satin paint, eggshell paint is more affordable. An eggshell finish is preferable for homeowners looking to save money at the paint store or redecorate substantial parts of their homes.

Why is sheen important in painting?

A paint’s sheen is significant since it provides information about how the paint will appear on your wall. They will appear shiny or matte depending on how different sheens interact with the light. There are uses for each sheen that they are best suited for. For best effects, the rooms or portions of the house you’re painting should have the proper finish. Our residential painters on the Mornington Peninsula are very aware of which sheens will best suit the rooms that are being painted and where they should be used.

When to use these sheens based on their characteristics?

Certain parts of a house are better suited to particular sheens. Because of this, choosing the right sheen for a given application can be challenging. The gloss of the paint will determine how shiny it is. Because they are easier to clean, glossy paints are typically more durable than matte paints.

Sheens with a high shine is ideal for doors, cabinets, and trim. All of these locations see a lot of usage and traffic. High gloss, however, is frequently excessively shiny for most interior walls. Its application is therefore restricted to places susceptible to wear and tear. Some interior walls can be finished with semi-gloss sheens, depending on personal preference.

Eggshell paint vs. satin: Which should you choose?

For the interior walls, satin sheens are frequently employed. Compared to eggshell and matte paints, they are simpler to clean. Because of this, they are ideal for rooms like the kitchen, living room, bedrooms, and bathrooms. They give the walls a somewhat less polished appearance. This produces a smoother, velvetier tone and is better suited for huge walls.

Eggshell paints have a lower gloss because they reflect more light than matte paints. Compared to a matte sheen, this pulls out more of the color of the paint, giving the room a softer glowing appearance. Eggshell paint is easier to maintain than matte or flat paint because of its little sheen.


The difference between eggshell vs satin paints is that Satin paint is glossier than eggshell paint, which has a little greater sheen than matte or flat finish paint. An eggshell finish’s low reflectivity makes it ideal for concealing brushstrokes, minor drywall dings, and imperfections on painted walls.