Eggshell Vs. Satin Finish (Pricing, Pros, Cons Based On Room Type)

Eggshell and satin paint sheens are the most popular when selecting a finish for the interior of your home. Each sheen has a distinct appearance. Eggshell paint leans toward a shinier appearance when compared to a matte finish. Satin paint, however, is glossier and reflects more light in the room.

Each paint finish works best for different areas in a home. Eggshell paint, known for its durability and easy-to-clean surfaces in high-traffic rooms and hallways, is the most affordable paint finish.

A tad more expensive than eggshell paint, satin paint is the preferred glossy finish in kitchens, bathrooms, and trim. Satin paint is also impervious to dirt and simple to clean.

Understanding how your paint finish can work for you and your lifestyle is essential when debating which type of paint to use. It is more than what meets the eye.

Although there is not a huge difference in affordability, each paint type has its pros and cons. This article will delve into the differences between eggshell vs. satin sheens and guide you in selecting the best one for your home.

Paint Finish
Easy to cleanDurableHigh SheenHigh TrafficEasy paint touch-ups

What is Eggshell Finish 

Eggshell paint has fewer resins, making it less reflective than a high gloss satin finish. Ranking in between flat or matte and satin paint finishes, eggshell is an excellent choice for most walls and surfaces in your home. Homeowners find that eggshell paint is easy to use and apply.

Eggshell Paint


Think of an actual eggshell. When you examine a real eggshell next to eggshell paint, you will notice a smooth and almost flawless patina. The subtle soft sheen appearance is easy-on-the-eye. Eggshell paint works well in most interior rooms while not overreaching.

It is an excellent choice for concealing wall imperfections. The lack of shine and light reflections dulls the appearance of wall nicks, holes, and stains.

Eggshell Apperance

Eggshell is not completely matte so the option of adjusting your room’s lighting can often increase or decrease the shine emitting from your walls. It all just depends of the mood and setting you are striving for.

Eggshell paint isn’t confined to white or off-white. Paint manufacturers offer a whole rainbow of colors that have an eggshell finish. Interior designers prefer an eggshell finish for its depth of color opposed to a flat chalky finish.


The advantage of an eggshell finish is its durability, especially in a home with a lot of people, kids and pets. Eggshell paint will maintain its appearance and wear for as long as 10 years, as long as the paint is applied properly, preferably by professionals. Eggshell paint can last more than 5 additional years than when you use flat paint.

More effective and durable than flat paint, an eggshell finish allows homeowners to effectively wash fingerprints and your child’s crayon artwork, remove dirty marks and scuffs from your baseboards or molding.

Keep in mind the higher the gloss the easier these spaces will be to clean. Eggshell finish paints also pick up less dust than glossier paints.

Ability to Clean

Eggshell paint finish cleans better than matte paint, and is ideal for family homes. There are a few different materials and techniques recommended to use when washing your walls or ceilings.

First, dust the space you want to clean with a clean cloth. This will ensure that when you apply your cleanser and water, you aren’t creating more of a mess by mixing it up with dirt.

Use a gentle soap cleanser such as a dye-free liquid dish cleanser like Dawn. Mix ¼ teaspoon in a quart of warm water.

Make circular motions with a non-abrasive sponge or clean rag to the space. Do not use too much pressure as this may damage the paint. Then, using a clean damp cloth, wipe away the excess of soap and water, and let the area dry thoroughly. 

A mixture of baking soda and water will do the trick to spot clean crayon marks. Create a paste with three tablespoons of baking soda with water. Use a clean damp non-abrasive sponge to gently wipe the area clean.


Compared to flat paint, eggshell finish paint does cost more. The price tag really depends on the brand name of paint, but in general you can expect to pay about 5% more for eggshell finish. Per gallon, the price ranges between $11 and $80.

Some of the best brands that make the best eggshell paint include Behr (estimated $59/gallon), Benjamin Moore (estimated $74.99/gallon), Farrow and Ball (estimated $62/gallon) Sherwin Williams (estimated $70/gallon) and Valspar (estimated $42/gallon).

Glidden HEP (estimated $20/gallon) and Visions Workhorse (estimated $30/gallon) are two paint brands that offer more affordable collections of eggshell finish paints.

Where To Use Eggshell Finish? 

The eggshell finish is sustainable for its ability to work in all sorts of homes. A practical paint choice in low traffic rooms, eggshell paint finishes are durable and cleanable in a living room, a dining room and at-home office.

Eggshell Paint

Some homeowners choose eggshell paint for busy hallways and bedrooms, too. A little wear and tear doesn’t stop homeowners from choosing eggshell paint for busy hallways and bedrooms, too. Any area with texture flaws and imperfections will make good use of an eggshell finish.

What is Satin Finish?

Satin finish paint has a longlasting reflective gloss. Not as shiny as a semi-gloss, satin finish paint can give highly used areas such as a kitchen or bathroom a brighter lively atmosphere.

Created with more pigment and less resins, satin finish provides a beautiful sheen. Wherever it is used, this paint finish is easy to clean without the concern of damaging the paint.


A satin finish can change the look of any room in your home, especially a brand new home. It is one of the most popular types of finishes.

Not as reflective as semi-gloss, and not dull like matte, satin finish is an ideal compromise. The finish appears smooth and elegant under a low light, and vibrant and more intense under strong lighting. 

Blemishes such as cracks, old patches and dents on walls or ceilings will not cover well with satin paint. Unfortunately, the light reflection will actually highlight these imperfections.

If you are living in an older home, it is probably best to use an eggshell finish. Avoid paint brush strokes on your finished wall, which is a common problem when you don’t employ professionals.


The higher the gloss and shine of a paint finish, the stronger the beating the paint can sustain. One of the most durable finishes, satin paint handles dirt, stains, scuffs and scratches.

In rooms like the kitchen where oil may splatter, satin finish paint can be easily wiped clean. It is also a popular finish in bathrooms for its resistant to water and moisture. These are two rooms that require continuous cleaning and maintenance throughout the week.

Ability To Clean 

Satin finishes are super easy to clean. Different from an eggshell finish, satin paint can handle a more vigorous cleaning without harming the finish.

Similar to washing an eggshell finish, start by dusting and removing any environmental grime from the wall space. Use a clean duster or cloth.

Fingerprints are easy to remove. Gently rub a clean dry cloth on the mark until it has vanished. It is best to regularly check for fingerprints so they don’t permeate the paint over time.

Generally it is always a good idea to start any cleaning project with a gentle non-dye liquid soap cleanser mixed with water.

If that doesn’t do the job, you could try using two or three tablespoons of white vinegar mixed with tepid water. Take your wrung out sponge or clean cloth and wash away the stain or mark on the wall. Use a dry clean sponge to wipe away excess soap and water.

Avoid over-saturating the stain, or dirty area with water for that could remove the paint sheen.


Satin finish paints are priced similarly to eggshell finishes. You can find most brands online, in major home improvement stores and local hardware shops in the range of $11 to $60 per gallon.

One gallon of paint is enough to paint an average size bathroom. 

Some of the best satin finish paint brands include Sherwin-Williams’ Duration Home line (approximately $60/gallon), Behr Premium Plus (approximately $37/gallon), and Behr Marquee (approximately $56/gallon). 

More affordable satin interior paint brands include Speedhide Interior Satin (approximately $25/gallon), and Benjamin Moore Kitchen & Bath (approximately $20/gallon).

Where To Use Satin Finish? 

Satin finish works incredibly well in bathrooms, kitchens and in closets. When your room is in need of a lift, satin finishpaint will brighten up the space.

In addition, homeowners like a satin paint for shelves, wall trims and molding, baseboards and skirtboards. This finish looks great as a contrast to eggshell finish walls and ceilings.

It’s best to use eggshell or matte paint when you need to hide imperfections. In addition, satin finish paint is tough to touch-up. The fresher coat of paint will have a slightly different sheen than the original coat.

Is Eggshell or Satin Finish More Durable? 

Each eggshell and satin finish paints work distinctly well as interior home paint. However when you are in the process of selecting paint finishes for your home, many homeowners prefer a more durable option. 

In the case of which finish is more durable, satin is generally more sustainable. Satin is the best choice for bathrooms, kitchens, molding and trims.

It can handle stains and scuffs better than eggshell. Satin paint protects the wall or woodwork from mildew and mold. Also different from eggshell, satin is easily washable with a quick wipe or with a gentle liquid dish cleanser. 

Is Eggshell or Satin Finish Glossier? 

The glossier the paint finish, the more hardwearing the paint will work for you. On the scale of glossy, a satin finish outglosses eggshell.

A glossy paint finish can change the mood of a room. During the daylight, the space feels brighter with the illusion of a larger space. In the dimmer lit evening time, your room impresses elegance.

Some interior designers say the walls look velvety.  Decor experts also like to apply satin finish paint on moldings and trim throughout the home. This provides the room with contrast and texture. 

A less glossy paint such as eggshell cultivates a toned-down room vibe. With less brilliance in the paint, the patina appears smooth and soft. It is a great option for rooms that don’t have a lot of foot traffic. Designers choose the eggshell finish for its traditional and classic setting.

Final Decision

While satin finish has multiple advantages such as durability, eggshell finish is an excellent choice. Not only does this paint finish hide wall and wood imperfections, it does a wonderful job in making your home space feel warm and welcoming.

Eggshell finishes are available in a myriad of colors, and when scuffed or marked up, it is a finish that can be gently cleaned to look like new. And, when it doesn’t clean up perfectly, you can touch up the paint without anyone noticing.

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