I’ve been in search of the best interior trim/cabinet paint for almost a decade. I’ve tried as many different types and brands I could find and I think I found a winner.
A bit of background first — I’m not a professional painter but I do consider myself a paint enthusiast in the search of the ultimate interior finish for cabinets and trim. I also prefer airless (Graco) or HVLP (Fuji 4-stage) spraying application over brushing on the paint. For some reason I can’t stand the “brush strokes” — no matter how good a painter is, I like the perfect smooth finish of spraying (OCD?).
Since I prefer spraying the finish on, I opt for water based paints for the ease of clean up. Over the years I tried the following trim/cabinet paints:
- Sherwin William ProClassic® Interior Acrylic Latex Enamel – Satin – First generation 2004 (applied over 10 gallons)
- Sherwin William ProClassic® Interior Acrylic Latex Enamel – Satin – 2011 (applied over 4 gallons)
- Sherwin William ProClassic® Interior Waterbased Acrylic-Alkyd Enamel – Satin -(applied over 3 gallons)
- Benjamin Moore ADVANCE® Waterborne Interior Alkyd Paint – Satin – (applied 6 gallons)
The break down goes like this — the Sherwin William ProClassic line provided a decent finish. To me, it lays down more like a latex-y finish than oil. Satin actually turned out more of a duller, flat finish. I used that for all this doors and trim in my home and it has held up well.
The early version of the Acrylic Latex Enamel paint seemed to sag when applied with a spray gun and was quite a challenge — even when using a fine finish tip and light coats. Apparently, this was a known issue with the early formulation and Sherwin William’s adjusted the formula to fix that. I gave the latest formulation a try and it was much better but the finish didn’t level as nice compared to the newer “hybrid” water based Acrylic-Alkyd finishes.
I’m a big fan of the new “hybrid” paints where it’s like oil but with the ease of clean up of water based paint. The only drawback is that it takes a lot longer for it to cure over the Interior Acrylic Latex Enamel finishes. So be sure to give the paint extra time to fully cure before placing items on a bookcase/cabinet — something that could be an issue for most projects that you want to finish in a weekend.
Between the Sherwin William’s ProClassic Interior Waterbased Acrylic-Alkyd Enamel and the Benjamin Moore ADVANCE®Waterborne Interior Alkyd Paint it was very close — both are great finishes but I’m really preferring the overall application, smell and finish to the Benjamin Moore Advanced paint.
WINNER: Benjamin Moore ADVANCE® Waterborne Interior Alkyd Paint
Feel free to post any questions and I’d love to hear your experiences as well!