Reviewing paint is definitely more exciting than watching it dry. Painters have two major questions on their minds: How well does the paint cover the wall? And, how good does it look when it's dry? I will answer these questions with my review of Valspar Signature Colors Interior paint, as I have just painted two areas of my house using this expensive paint that I purchased from Lowe's home improvement store.
Recommend this product?
I've used several brands of paint before Valspar, including Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams and Kwal. I've never been either seriously impressed or disappointed by any of these brands, and I often choose a brand of paint based on whatever store is closest when the urge to redecorate takes hold of me. So, when I decided to switch from tan to taupe last Sunday, I was closest to Lowe's. The Valspar display at Lowe's is one of the most inspiring I've seen. I love their spectrum of colors and the bright, cheerful booklets with great ideas for combining colors and choosing contemporary shades and hues. OK, I'm a sucker for the Valspar rainbow ~ I couldn't wait to bring my cans of paint home to transform my sitting room (Woodrow Wilson Putty, a dreamy taupe) and kitchen (Night Shade, a luscious purple).
Chapter 1. The Wrong Paint
After chatting with the paint clerk, she assembled my order and sold me several cans of Ultra Premium paint (another Valspar product). I purchased a gallon of Putty in eggshell sheen, a quart in semigloss for the trim, and a quart of Night Shade in eggshell for my kitchen accent wall. Next morning, I began to tackle the sitting room. As I rolled and brushed the putty color on the wall, I noticed it was not covering the drywall evenly ~ the light tan wall color underneath was showing through everywhere! I had a deadline to get the room painted, I decided to return the paint at Lowe's.
Chapter 2. The Right Paint ~ Valspar Signature Colors Interior Paint
Luckily, returning the used paint at Lowe's was hassle-free. I asked what other formulations they offered with better coverage. I was told that Valspar Signature Colors is the TRUE premium formulation that Lowes sells. And, the price reflects the upscale coverage ~ it's at least $10 more per gallon. Returning home with my upgraded paint, I hoped my exchange would be rewarded.
Almost immediately, I noticed the difference between Ultra Premium and Signature Colors. Signature Colors is indeed a thicker paint, and it covered the tan color underneath excellently, with no show-through. Its viscosity is just right ~ it doesn't drip much, but isn't viscous enough to be gloppy. All of sudden, painting became fun again. I saw my progress immediately, as I rolled the upper walls and brushed paint under the crown. Signature Colors paint was much easier to apply evenly with a brush ~ I was able to brush a bead of paint smoothly under the crown to make a neat edge. I noticed that the brushed and rolled areas blended smoothly together and dried evenly. WOW, there really was a huge difference between these two varieties of Valspar paints. I wonder why Lowe's even bothers to sell the inferior paint to customers, instead of trying to up-sell the customer on its "One Coat Coverage" signature product.
My next Signature Colors painting project was a plum accent wall in my kitchen near our dining table. After taping off the trim and cabinets, I rolled a lovely Night Shade color on the wall. The coverage didn't disappoint me ~ after a single rolled and brushed coat, the wall is nearly completely saturated with color, and has dried to a perfectly even finish, without visible brush strokes. It's not quite perfect, though. I will need to touch up some spots with the roller where the undercoat (white) is showing through in tiny dots. The tiny dots that arent't covered are generally the low spots in my knock-down textured wall. It's probable that while rolling, I stretched the paint a little too far and it shrunk slightly upon drying. The imperfections are barely noticeable, though, unless you peer closely at the wall. I really love the color ~ it compliments my reddish-brown wood cabinets. I can't say my husband was thrilled right away (I surprised him) but I have a feeling the color will grow on him.
Other facts & observations: Valspar is 100% Acrylic Latex and provides a mildew resistant finish. It dries to the touch in about an hour, and can be re-coated in 2-4 hours (if needed). As far as cleanup goes, Signature Colors does clean up easily with ordinary soap and water. I rinse and scrub my nylon brushes until the water runs clear, and the paint comes off fairly easily both the bristles and handle. While I'm painting, if I accidentally smear some on the trim, I can easily wipe it off with a moist tissue. Additionally, I barely notice any offensive odor from Signature Colors, either during application or afterward. While this isn't the most environmentally friendly offering from Lowes, it's classified as Low Odor paint.
Final thoughts: If you are going to buy Valspar paint, I recommend upgrading to Signature Colors for its excellent coverage and vibrant hues. My gut feeling is that the extra money you spend for Signature Colors is worth it, because the better, more even coverage will require buying less paint overall. And less paint requires less work to apply!
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