10 Best Paint Brands
Table of Contents
Looking For The Best Paint Brands
There’s a tale as old as time that goes like this: man and woman meet, man and woman fall in love, man and woman buy a house together, man and woman adopt two cats, man and woman renovate said house.
It’s a touching story with a bitter end once the couple realizes that they’ll have to paint their newly purchased house.
Painting can be an intimate bonding experience between painter and surface, actor and object, or it can take a toll on your sanity.
You may be racked with questions like which paint should I use, which colors go well together, do I need to use a primer, and why do some paints smell so irresistible?
Well, dear reader, that’s why we’re here. We’re not palm readers who can tell you exactly which shade of brown would make your living room look habitable. However, we can tell you about the best paint brands available.
We’ll give you an overview of what each brand produces, a little bit of their history, who their paints are designed for, what makes their products special, and wrap things up by giving you some tips to help you pick the best paint.
Just don’t ask us to do any actual painting. We’re writers with bad backs and weak wrists. With that out of the way, keep reading to find out our picks for the top paint brands.
10 Best Paint Brands
We’ll commence our list of the best paint brands with a company so popular that you’re probably reading this article in a room filled with their paint.
They’re the biggest paint manufacturer in the United States even though their business is so big that you can find them in over 120 countries.
Sherwin-Williams have been in operation since before color photographs were invented. They were founded in 1866 in America’s most colorful city, Cleveland, Ohio.
In their quarter-century of existence, they’ve built up a repertoire of paints for all occasions. They distribute all these types of paints:
- Coatings for inside and outside the house
- Automobile paint
Their paints come in different brands including Valspar (which we’ll get to later), Purdy, and Dupli-Color. If nothing else, they’re a great brand to shop from if you want the easiest to find paint.
- Largest manufacturer in the United States
- Long-running business
- Paints are available in most countries on the planet
2. Benjamin Moore
Good ol’ Benny M and the boys have been putting out banging paints for over a century. Originally operating out of New York, Benjamin Moore makes our list of the best paint brands for their earth-shattering innovation of the digital color matching system.
This process allowed its retail partners to use a computer to match colors, cutting out any discretions caused by human failure.
Another one of their leaps forward was the integration of resin and colorant processes that the company dubbed the Gennex Color Technology. It allowed their paints to shine brighter and resist stains even more.
These advances do elevate the price point of Benjamin Moore’s paints above their competitors, but like anything worth having in life, the added cost is usually worth the finished product.
- Publish helpful educational articles
- Fabricate some of the longest-lasting and stain-resistant paints available
- Can ask their professional contractors, architects, and designers for help
There’s a litany of puns that we could make using Behr’s name, but that’d draw the focus away from what makes them one of the best paint brands. We’re in the information business, not the funny business, and Behr is as serious about paints as bears are about honey.
Behr is particularly attractive because their paints are affordable compared to certain other paint brands. That’s because the company empowers people who want to complete projects themselves. They espouse a do-it-yourself attitude that would make Minor Threat proud.
You can only find Behr’s paint at The Home Depot in the United States and Canada. They’ve been a staple brand since 1947 with a wide offering of stains, interior paints, finishes, primers, and exterior paints.
- Great for do-it-yourself projects
- More affordable than other paint companies
- Pen articles about current trends in the interior design market to inspire customers
Glidden is another company that comes from Cleveland, Ohio. There must be something in the water over there that spurs so many great paint companies to sprout up.
They got their start in 1875 by creating paints for furniture, wagons, and pianos (you know, typical stuff you’d want to paint in 1875).
Thankfully, their products now cover a much wider range of surfaces. They create interior and exterior paints, primers, and paints for particular areas including these quality products:
- Glidden Porch & Floor
- Glidden Barn & Fence – Ready Mix
- Glidden Door and Paint Trim
We recommend purchasing their paints through one of their retailers as they prefer to sell through brick-and-mortar stores rather than on their own website.
Glidden earns their spot on our list for their acrylic paints. Acrylic paints are typically cheaper than other paints, meaning that Glidden paints are easier on the wallet.
This brand’s paints are still tough and stain-resistant despite their lower price tag, which is a win-win situation for you.
- Well-known for their acrylic paints
- Many of their paints do not leave a lasting odor
- Agreeable prices
Here’s a company with an interesting history. Rust-Oleum was the brainchild of Captain Robert Fergusson. It was on his ship in 1921 that he discovered that whale oil (we don’t even know how he got it) protected his vessel from rust.
Thankfully, the company uses materials like latex and epoxies instead of whale oil.
Either way, his discovery propelled him to found Rust-Oleum in Illinois as a company that specialized in rust-protective paints. This makes them an ideal company for automobile owners or those looking to paint an outdoor surface.
Rust-Oleum produces spray paints, tile paints, and more. They’re one of the favorite brands of do-it-yourself homeowners who want to give their surfaces a protective sheen.
They believe in the company’s mantra – “rust never sleeps” – and trust Rust-Oleum to keep their surfaces safe.
- Their paints protect surfaces against rust
- Vintage style and colors
6. PPG Diamond
We’re technically double-dipping by including PPG Diamond as one of the best paint brands because they’re owned by Glidden.
However, we doubt you’ll mind as PPG Diamond is a specialized brand. It’s especially popular with Home Depot customers, garnering high scores on their website.
PPG Diamond creates acrylic-based paint. It’s ideal for interior design jobs because they produce less dangerous fumes than oil-based paints so you won’t accidentally be getting high while sitting in your newly-painted living room.
PPG Diamond’s paints dry quickly, taking up to an hour at most. That’s faster than most UberEats orders. They come in a huge swath of colors and don’t leave a lasting odor either.
- A great option for interior paint jobs
- Dry quickly
- Acrylic paints
Since we’re in the business of revisiting companies, let’s callback our first entry in this list of the best paint brands. Valspar is a brand of previous entry Sherwin-Williams but this brand was a powerhouse in the industry before being acquired by them.
The Boston-based brand started in 1806, cementing themselves as the oldest company here. However their name came from their product Valspar, a transparent coat that proved so popular that the company took it as their own name in 1932.
Today, they’re one of the six largest paint distributors on Earth. You can find their products at Lowe’s or other individual stores. Their product line is quite extensive, offering subtle differences in colors and applications.
They also produce tools like paintbrushes, rollers, and full paint kits.
- Customers can speak with their paint experts through the company’s website
- Better price points for certain products
- Free trial program offered through Lowe’s
Kilz is a brand that’s available through a multitude of distributors including Walmart, RONA, and Amazon. But if they’re more than just a company that you can purchase with a flick of your finger. They’re one of the best paint brands when it comes to primers and stainers.
The brand was introduced in 1974 as a primer-focused company under the tutelage of Masterchem Industries. This primer has gone on to become one of the most beloved primers available.
Kilz’s products are known for their thick finish, allowing them to provide a clean job without leaving any surfaces uncovered. This makes them great for novice painters who may not feel comfortable when it comes to detail.
- Well-trusted primer
- Good for first-time painters
- Available through Walmart and Amazon
9. Diamond Brite
You’ve read enough about acrylic paints, which are great, but they’re not always the right products for the job. Say hello to Diamond Brite. The company specializes in oil-based paints, coatings, tile paints, and decorative concrete.
But all that is putting the horse before the carriage. Diamond Brite has been an industry figurehead since 1978. They’re one of the best paint brands, if not number one when it comes to pools and decks. That’s why they fabricate oil-based paints.
Their products are frequently used by contractors because of their durability and strong finish. They protect pools and decks from external factors like rain, snow, and curious wildlife that enter your backyard sniffing for food.
- Ideal paint brand for pools and decks
- Provide tile installation service
- Price estimates for entire pools available through their website
The final entry in our list of the best paint brands is Clare, a company that operates by selling directly to the customer. Their modern business model is a product of their novelty in the paint market.
Nicole Gibbons founded Clare in 2017 as an entirely online company that sends paints directly to their customers.
The biggest appeal of Clare’s paints is that they’re VOC-free. If you’re trying to find paints with toxic compounds then you’d better not shop with Clare because you won’t find any in their catalog.
You won’t find better colors anywhere outside of Clare’s products. Their team is led by interior designers who apply their aesthetically-noted vision to create a line of available colors that give the rainbow a run for its money.
So if you’re looking for a brand that could be the next big thing in the paint world that’s striving to make a positive impact and change the way that companies and consumers do business, then look into Clare.
- Operate as an e-commerce brand
- All paints are VOC-free
- Free shipping on orders over $100
- Discounts are offered by signing up for their email newsletter
How to Shop for the Best Paint
Now that we laid the best paint brands bare in front of you, it’s time for you to figure out which paint is the best for you. Thankfully, we’ve outlined a few factors that can influence your decision.
Different paint brands can accomplish different goals. It’s why contractors favor companies like Diamond Brite while some handymen swear by Behr.
Each brand serves a certain purpose and knowing your purpose will help you know which brand is best for you.
You wouldn’t paint a living room neon yellow, would you? Please don’t.
The point is that knowing what sort of vibe you’re looking for in paint will affect which paint vibrancy is suited for your tastes.
Every can of paint you buy will have a label indicating its coverage. This is most important when you want to repaint a surface or are selecting deeper colors. In those situations, you may also need to buy a primer to put under the paint.
Some people love the smell of a fresh coat of paint while others find it intoxicating, and not in a good way. Knowing which materials leave an odor and which dissipate quickly is key to knowing which paint you should buy.
There’s a reason certain colors are used in office buildings to promote productivity. As much as some people don’t want to believe it, the interior of a room can affect us subconsciously. That’s why it’s important to think about the color scheme of the surface you want to paint.
Did you know that the dollar store sells paint? They’re the best place to go if you want the cheapest paint, but they’re not the best distributors of paints you’d actually want to use.
The paint’s price often reflects its quality, so it’s usually worth it to dish out a bit more money for good paint.
Is Valspar the same as Sherwin-Williams?
Valspar existed long before Sherwin-Williams. The former has been running since 1806 while Sherwin-Williams was formed over 50 years later.
With that being said, Sherwin-Williams currently owns Valspar. Technically speaking, that means that all Valspar products are Sherwin-Williams products.
What is the most popular interior wall color?
The most popular interior wall colors are usually light and earthy tones. Think of tame beige colorways, airy whites, or pale yellows. They’re usually slight variations on one another.
The point is that you’d want to buy a color that compliments what’s in the room instead of stealing the attention.
How many coats should you put on a wall?
That depends, how many coats do you have? Can they not fit in the closet?
Okay, all jokes aside, the general rule of thumb when it comes to coats of paint is that you should apply at least two. A single coat usually won’t cover the entire surface. Even if by some miracle you can cover a wall with just one surface, other problems may arise.
Uneven brushstrokes can be covered up by applying another coat. Basically, the more coats you apply, the fewer mistakes will be apparent. Think of coats as a safety net; the more you have, the safer you’ll be even if they’re not all necessary.
Do I need to prime before painting?
You only really need to prime before painting if you are covering a dark color with a light color. If you don’t prime before you paint then the dark color will likely stick out underneath the lighter color.
It’s like wearing a turtleneck underneath a tank top. Yes, the tank top is the top layer, but everyone can see the sleeves and neck poking out from underneath, and you’ll just look silly.
Painting is beholden to many interior design guidelines. Principles like material, coats, colors, and interior versus exterior surfaces can all affect how you go about painting.
We hope that you’ve learned enough about the best paint brands to identify which one will make your home decor dreams come true. If not, you can always apply another coat.
Check out our other curated lists of top brands: