The primary distinction between enamel and latex paint is the paint base. Latex paint is water-based, whereas enamel paint is oil-based. Enamel or oil-based paints, sometimes known as hard-surface paints, dry slowly but hardly, making them ideal for hard surfaces. Latex paints, which are popular with homeowners because they're less toxic than enamel paints, can stain clothing and other items that come in contact with them.
There are several types of enamel paint, each designed for a particular use. For example, enamel kitchen paint is formulated to be easy to clean and durable against heat and acids. Enamel exterior paint is very durable and will not crack or peel like most other paints will if it gets wet. Enamel house paint is similar to exterior enamel, but it has added protection against moisture and mildew. Enamel school paint is used on school buses and other vehicles where exposure to the elements is high.
Latex paint is made from natural rubber trees and plants, which are harvested after they die back in the fall. This material is then processed into liquid form before being sprayed onto the surface to be painted. Latex paint tends to be more expensive than enamel because it requires special equipment to apply the paint. However, due to its non-toxicity, you don't have to worry about chemicals affecting your children's health or your own if you're allergic to enamel paint.
Latex is suitable for ordinary painting tasks such as walls and ceilings. Paint is available in a variety of finishes, ranging from flat to high gloss. Some paints also contain enamel, an ingredient that hardens and makes the dried surface less porous. This type of finish is ideal for rooms where you don't want bare wood showing through.
Latex is also used for outdoor applications such as fences, car bodies, and play equipment because it will not crack or peel like other types of paint. The durability of this paint makes it useful for projects where you want to preserve the appearance of your surface over time.
Latex is sensitive to heat, so it shouldn't be used on materials that will be exposed to direct sunlight. It's also not recommended for use on items that come into contact with food because there can be traces of rubber in the paint. However, these are all avoidable hazards if you know what you're doing!
Latex paint comes in several colors and styles. If you need inspiration, take a look at our favorite latex paint colors. You'll find that many brands offer a wide selection of hues that will match any home decor.
Latex provides long-lasting protection against the elements, so it's perfect for outdoor projects and projects that involve children or pets.
The final texture and dry time are the two main distinctions between oil-based paint and latex-based paint on kitchen cabinets. Oil-based paints are more conventional and popular among purists who want the "painterly" effect of brush strokes, although latex paints provide a more uniform finish. Either type of paint can be used to restore or replace damaged wood, but oil-based paints will generally yield a look that's more varied in color and texture.
Latex paints are usually easier to work with because they're less thick than oils, so they tend to cover more area per stroke. They also dry faster, which means less waiting around for the job to be done.
Oil-based paints require more care because they're not as water resistant as latex paints. This is why we recommend only using an oil-based paint on wooden cabinets. Otherwise, you'll need to apply at least one additional coat of paint after it has dried to ensure protection from moisture.
If you plan to use oil-based paint on your kitchen cabinets, here are some other things to consider:
1. Make sure the wood is clean before you start painting. If it has old food stains or any kind of residue, remove it first with soap and water or sandpaper. You don't want these colors to hide anything else!
2. Test out your colors before you start painting.
Contrary to common perception, latex paint may be applied over enamel. However, in order to avoid future peeling paint, you must first do the necessary preparation work. In other words, if there are any holes or cracks in the surface before applying the latex paint, they will show up as red marks once the paint is dry.
The best way to apply latex paint is flat on a clean, oiled surface. Use a roller only for the first coat. Apply a second coat if needed. Let the painted surface dry completely before sanding or adding any other finishes.
Latex paints are durable and easy to maintain. You can use razor blades to cut straight lines, but otherwise allow the paint to cure completely before working with it again.
Latex paints are available in an array of colors and styles. They are easy to find at home improvement stores and online. Be sure to buy latex paint instead of acrylic or oil-based paint for the best results.