Tue Jul 18 2023

The Best Types of Paint for Bathrooms Bathtubs to Use in 2023

The Best Types of Paint for BathroomsBathtubs to Use

Aesthetics were and are always part of bathrooms and bathtubs. From the Victorian era to the modern age, bathtubs, and bathrooms have always been 50% functionality and 50% aesthetics. Imagine, you have a nice new freestanding bathtub in your bathroom. After spending so much time and money, you are not completely satisfied with the overall look. You did not get the look that you are expecting. So, what can be done?

In such cases, the best thing to do is, to paint the bathtub or even the whole bathroom to give it a fresh new look. But what are the best types of paints for the bathroom?

There is no definite answer for the best types of paints. Each paint type serves its purpose, meaning it has its pros and cons. Having a fresh coat of paint in your bathroom not only elevates your ambiance but also increases the lifespan of your bathroom walls and hardware.

Let’s take a look at a variety of paint types and other essential factors to consider before starting your paint project. 

Moisture Is a Greater Threat to the Paint

Do you know? In the U.S. alone, a staggering 14,000 households face water damage on a daily basis, and the repair costs to fix water damage can cost anywhere from $1500 to $2000. Moisture is the enemy that you should look for when you start your painting project. Not only for the bathroom but also for the bathtub, moisture can deteriorate the structural integrity.

When the steam from your bathing session seeps into the bathroom walls (between the wall and the paint), after some time, the moisture can create surface anomalies, such as peeling, cracking, spots, and uneven texture.

So, it is best to try paints that have water-resistance properties to avoid water damage and increase the lifespan of your bathroom walls, floors, and hardware.

At the same time, there is a downside to water-resistance paint. Usually, water-resistant paint is for external use. One of the main reasons is the emission of health hazard chemicals from the paint. This can cause respiratory issues, especially in seniors and children.

If you are having confusion about choosing the right paint, it is best to hire a professional to finish the painting job quickly and efficiently. 

Understandably, hiring a professional can take a huge hit on your budget. You likely want to save as much money as possible so you can focus on more important things for your household.

Now, let’s discuss better paints for your bathroom, along with some good primers you should consider. 

Primer – What Is It?

If you paint on a blank wall, it will likely not stick on the surface properly. You need an adhesive to bond the paint to the wall. That is where primer comes into the picture. Using primer helps the paint bond very well to the wall. And also, primer helps to prevent any structural abnormalities.

When you choose a primer for your walls, look for a primer with mildewcide additives. These additives help to protect the walls from the formation of mildew and other water-related damage and increase the lifespan of your bathroom walls and even your floors.

NOTE: If you want a matte (no-glossy finish), primer is an important requirement for your project.

For the best primer, you should check out KILZ Mold & Mildew Interior|Exterior Primer.

Paint – What Type Suits Your Bathroom Best?

Paint – What Type Suits Your Bathroom Best?

When it comes to paint types, you should be aware there are six different types of paint available for your bathroom. Each type has its perks, along with some notable disadvantages. The following are some different types of paint for your bathroom/bathtub:

  1. Matte, or Eggshell
  2. Flat
  3. Satin
  4. Semi-Gloss
  5. Glossy
  6. Full-Gloss

Matte, Eggshell, and Flat

This type of flat and matte finish only appeals to a specific existing look of a bathroom/bathtub. This is also backed up by professionals. One of the main reasons to “avoid’ is the matte and flat finish is more prone to the formation of mildew than other types of paints. More mildew means more water damage and that is not good for your bathroom and bathtub overall. If you are in a high-humidity area, you can face much worse mildew formation.

And another reason to steer away from matte, and flat finish is the maintenance. It is much harder to clean than other types of paint. If it is hard to clean, then there is no point in using matte and flat finish paint for your bathroom.

But, if you are a soft dimension lover and want that smooth finish (without any gloss), there is no choice other than the matte or eggshell finish paint. 


Even though the matte and flat finish have alarming disadvantages, the technology used to create paint has come a long way, and there are matte finish paints available with mildew resistance.

Still, if you are in a high-humidity area, it is best to take measures against the formation of mildew.

Apart from mildew formation, the matte finish is also prone to peeling and chipping if the primer is not applied properly. 


If you want the matte look for your bathroom and bathtub, it is better to check the paint for mildew resistance or get help from a professional to apply the paint properly.

Eggshell is also a type of paint that is more or less identical to the matte and flat finish. The only major difference is that, while the matte and flat gives smoothness, eggshell has a texture to it, which makes it belong to another type of paint: satin. 


Satin comfortably sits in the middle of the scale of less glossy to as glossy as glass. You can think of satin as the upgraded version of matte and flat finish. The satin finish comes with a light layer of coating that greatly helps to prevent the growth of mildew, also it can be cleaned easier than the matte and flat paint types. 


If you are living in a high-humidity area and want that matte finish (not minding a little gloss), satin can be a great choice. The only drawback is that, satin can be a little bit more expensive than the matte and flat paint types. 


As the name suggests, semi-gloss is a step back from fully glossy, which is perfect for your bathroom walls, bathtub, and even your cabinets. A good glossy coating, which is easy to clean is the reason why it is popular among many households. Along with the good resistance towards mildew growth, semi-gloss surprisingly possesses good water resistance, which makes it good for walls and ceilings.

With a semi-glossy paint type, you have a plethora of options to choose from both online and in local hardware stores.

Unlike other types, such as matte and satin, semi-gloss dries within a short period, and the durability is considerably better than the matte and satin finish. This means the probability of mildew formation and chipping is low compared to matte and satin paint types.

One of the drawbacks is that it can be a little expensive, but considering the benefits that it brings can justify its price.


If you want the best protection from water, full gloss paint is the best choice. Thanks to a thick glossy finish, the formation of mildew and other wall abnormalities is eliminated greatly.  Same as the semi-gloss, since it is water resistant, you can use it on your cabinet, and bathtub (which can be quite attractive). Also, full-gloss is stain-resistant, meaning it is difficult to stain walls with a full-gloss finish. 

This is thanks again to a thick glossy finish, which considerably makes it easier to clean and maintain.

If your bathroom is made of wood, it is better to use full-gloss paint, which greatly helps to seal the wood and prevent water damage.

Lastly, the lifespan of full-gloss is higher than other types of paints on the list.

One of the main drawbacks is that high-gloss paint can reveal the existing abnormalities on the wall. If you are going for a high-gloss paint, ensure that you resolve any surface imperfections before painting it. 


Suggested Reads:

  • How To Paint a Bathtub? A Fresh Look in 10 Steps
  • 3 Best Materials and Approaches to Clean Bathtub in 2023
  • How to Change Your Bathtub Color in 2023 – The Complete Guide
  • FAQs

  • What paint is best for a high-moisture bathroom?
  • For a high-moisture bathroom, it is best to go with either semi-gloss or full-gloss paint. One of the main reasons is that both paint types provide a layer of protection that helps to prevent the formation of mildew and other water damage.

  • What is the latest color trend for bathrooms?
  • The latest trend is to create an illusion of a large area even if the bathroom is small. One of the best ways to create that illusion is by using white or light colors.

  • Is there a special type of paint for a bathroom?
  • There is no “special” type of paint for a bathroom. To prevent water damage and eliminate the formation of mildew in a bathroom, it is best to use full-gloss paint. 

    Final Thoughts

    Choosing the best paint can be confusing since there are important factors to consider, such as wall reflection, mildew, mold resistance, wall chipping, and peeling. Always check for paint that has water and mold resistance. Full-gloss and semi-gloss can provide good protection against water damage for your bathroom and bathtubs. But sometimes, the damage can be irreversible and in some cases, you need a replacement bathtub. If you are in that situation, you are in the right place. 


    Magnus Home Products have a great collection of bathtubs with a variety of bathtub materials at affordable prices. This article hopes to have provided you with information about paint types and how to choose one for your bathroom and bathtub.