Is Flat or Matte Paint Good for Bathroom Cabinets?

Are you feeling drab with the overall look of your home? Do you want to makeover your house without spending too much? Flat paint is known to be cost-effective, but can you use this type of paint on your cabinets? 

Flat paint can be used for bathroom cabinets, but there are a few things to keep in mind. First, flat paint is not as durable as other paints. Cleaning the cabinets over time will cause them to wear down and become chipped or scratched. Flat paint also doesn’t reflect light, so it may appear duller and darker in certain conditions. 

The last thing you want is a short-term solution. This article will show you how to make flat and matte paint still work on your bathroom cabinets.

5 Reasons Why Flat and Matte Paint Isn’t the Best Choice

When painting cabinets, flat or matte paint is not the best choice. While flat/matte paint is more affordable than higher-sheen finishes and may appear to be easier to apply, there are several drawbacks that make this type of paint a poor choice for cabinets. Let’s take a look at why this is so. 

Difficult to clean

One of the main reasons you should consider avoiding flat or matte paint on your bathroom cabinets is that it can be difficult to clean.

The problem with this type of paint is that it does not have any shine, which means that dirt, grime, and grease are more likely to stick to it and be visible. This can make it difficult to keep your cabinets looking their best over time. 


The biggest concern with using flat or matte paint on cabinets is that it lacks durability. These paints are prone to scratches, dents, and chips.

Over time, these imperfections become more pronounced and can ruin the look of the cabinets. Furthermore, the finish will eventually wear away even with frequent maintenance and cleaning. 

Lack of sheen 

Another issue with flat paints is that they lack any kind of sheen or gloss, which means they don’t reflect light as much as other paints.

This can make your cabinets appear duller than they would with a shinier finish like semi-gloss or high-gloss paint.

A lack of sheen also means that fingerprints and watermarks are more easily visible on these types of finishes, making them less desirable for use in bathrooms where these issues are likely to arise often.

Susceptible to mold and mildew

Another downside of using flat or matte paint on cabinets is that it can be more susceptible to developing mold and mildew.

Flat paint in bathroom cabinets can be especially problematic as the humidity levels in these areas can be higher than in other rooms.

This is because these paints are not as effective at blocking moisture which can lead to the growth of these unwanted microbes.

Poor resistance to water and stains

Another disadvantage to using flat paint on cabinets is that it has poor resistance to water and stains. Any spills, splashes, or other liquids can quickly seep into the paint, causing lasting damage and discoloration.

Specially Formulated Flat Paint for Bathroom Cabinets

Using flat paint for cabinets used to be considered a risky decision, since it was notoriously difficult to clean and not very durable. However, there has been a lot of innovation in the industry recently, and these types of paints have become far more advanced and long-lasting.

There are now specially formulated flat paints that are designed specifically for cabinets. This type of flat paint offers increased durability and washability compared to non-specialized flat paints.

It can resist damage from light scrubbing and doesn’t suffer from fading or peeling over time. With this new improved version of flat paint you can easily obtain a timeless look in your cabinets that won’t need redecorating too often.

The 3 Best Paint Finishes for Bathroom Cabinets

Cabinets greatly impact the overall look and feel of your bathroom, so you want to be sure that you have selected the best type of paint finish for your needs. A great way to make sure your bathroom looks modern and stylish is by picking the right cabinet paint finishes. 


A glossy finish is perfect for those who want a sleek and modern look for their cabinets. Glossy finishes reflect more light than other finishes, instantly brightening a space. Glossy finishes are also very durable and resistant to scratches and fingerprints.

Plus, it’s easy with a glossy finish if you ever need to wipe down or clean your cabinets. The only downside of a glossy finish is that any imperfections on your cabinet doors will be more visible due to the shiny surface.


Semi-gloss paint is the ideal choice for bathroom cabinets as it provides a balance between satin and high-gloss finishes.

It offers a suitable level of reflection that highlights the depth and richness of the paint color, but at the same time, it doesn’t overpower the overall look of the bathroom with its shine.

Additionally, semi-gloss paint is highly durable and can withstand everyday wear and tear as well as resist moisture more effectively compared to matte finishes. This makes it a practical and attractive option for bathroom cabinets.


Satin finishes offer the best of both worlds. They provide enough shine without being too reflective, as a glossy finish can be. This makes them ideal for those who don’t want their cabinet doors too shiny but still want some shine without sacrificing durability or ease of cleaning.

Satin finishes also have less glare compared to other paints, which can be great for those who don’t like too much light reflecting off their cabinets at night or in darker spaces.  

Caring for your finished cabinets

A great way to spruce up a room is to replace the cabinets, as it can give the entire space a fresh and updated look. But once you’ve installed them, it’s important to remember that they need regular care and maintenance to keep them looking their best.

Cleaning regularly 

The best way to keep your finished cabinets looking great is by cleaning them regularly. Dust, dirt, and other debris will accumulate on the surfaces of your cabinets over time if left unchecked, so be sure to wipe them down with a microfiber cloth or gentle cleaner about once per week.

This will help remove any build-up that may be present, as well as prevent dirt from getting trapped in crevices and corners.

Make repairs quickly

If you notice any chips, cracks, scratches, or other signs of wear on your finished cabinets, make sure to address these issues promptly, so they don’t worsen over time. You can prevent further damage by fixing any repairs quickly and save yourself money in the long run.

Avoiding scratches and nicks 

Nicks and scratches will inevitably occur on your cabinet surfaces. To minimize these types of blemishes occurring on your finished cabinets, it may be helpful to invest in soft coasters, liners, or placemats, which can act as an added layer of protection between hard objects and delicate surfaces.

Joshua Milton

I want to share everything I know about home improvement in order to help you. Whether you're a home enthusiast or an industry professional, I have the information that you need.

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