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When shopping for paint for your kitchen, you’ll want to avoid typical house paints designed for walls, ceilings, and trim as they lack the performance characteristics required for heavy use areas like the kitchen.
As a professional painting company that paints and refinishes kitchen cabinets, we include a 3-year warranty on all our work, so we don’t want to risk using the wrong paint on the kitchen doors and drawer fronts we paint. We take product selection very seriously, and since the cost of the product is negligible comparing it to the labor costs, we research and test every high-end trim paint we get our hands on.
We have test sprayed a number of different products advertised as ‘cabinet grade’ and look for the following attributes:
- The smoothest finish
- The best leveling
- The least amount of odor
- And once dry, the hardest finish
We looked specifically for hardness since these surfaces have to be able to handle heavy use. The paint cannot mar, dent, scratch or stain.
By way of example, recently a new customer had us re-do their just painted cabinetry project. The cabinetry looks great from a distance but upon closer inspection already took damage after only a few weeks’ use.
The prior painting company applied a standard trim paint that was much too soft. Areas the owners had cleaned were burnished, other high touch areas around pulls and knobs showed smudging that couldn’t be removed.
The paint we ultimately chose after much testing is Benjamin Moore’s Advance. It comes in a variety of sheens as well as a primer so the entire coating system delivers high performance, from first coat to final. What we like about this product is its versatility. It brushes and rolls as well as it sprays, so a door spray-finished in our shop looks good against the brushed or rolled box it is mounted on.
It takes a little practice as the leveling it offers involves a viscosity that might trip up a painter used to a thicker, faster-drying paint. Paint has virtually no odor so we don’t have to worry about working around children or pets. It does not have any kind of solvent or flammable. A key feature for us as we chose to move away from oil-based paints completely. For safety as well as for the environmental benefits. Finally, all tools clean up with soap and water too, a huge bonus.
Read more: Paint or replace kitchen cabinets?