This is a in-depth review of the absolute best paint for trim and baseboards. Insl-x Cabinet Coat is an enamel that is made for interior doors, trim, and cabinets. With just this one can you can get a factory smooth finish that is easy to clean and super durable.
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What paint to use for baseboards and trim work?
In the last four years, I’ve had a ton of painting experience to last me a lifetime. In that time I have tried every brand of paint, paint finish, and types of paint. When it comes to painting trim, baseboards, doors, and cabinets I have fallen in love with just one brand!
When looking for a paint to paint your baseboards you should steer clear of your normal wall paint, which is acrylic latex paint. Aiming for an acrylic enamel is going to give you a hard smooth finish that is durable and will last.
Out of all the highly rated paint brands, my most favorite out of all of them is Insl-x Cabinet Coat. I feel like a ton of people don’t talk about this paint enough, it is actually a product made by Benjamin Moore. The first time I ever used this paint in our own home was to refurbish our kitchen cabinets. I knew it was a winner when just days after painting the cabinets I had swung my yeti cup off the counter accidentally and hit one of my freshly painted doors and didn’t leave a mark!
What is the most durable paint for trim?
The most durable paint type for trim and baseboards is going to be an acrylic enamel or oil-based paint. Oil-based paints are smelly and hard to work with. Acrylic enamel‘s like Insl-x are more on the pricier side, but they will cure the hardest and are less porous, making them easy to clean and durable.
From experience, I can say Insl-x Cabinet Coat hardens to a nice finish and has never steered me wrong. Just recently I have been painting our doors and trim with Insl-x Cabinet Coat and the finish is holding up better than the builder grade paint that the house came with.
Some perks of Insl-x Cabinet Coat are:
- resists chipping, scuffing, food stains, grease and water
- Available in a wide range of different colors & 2 different sheens
- Excellent flow and self leveling properties- This gives you the best results with no visible brush strokes.
- Dry to touch in 1 hour and can recoat in 6 hours
Tips for painting the trim
Painting trim is considered a beginner project. The key to success is having the correct paint, prep work, and taking the time to get good results. From a seasoned painter here are some of my tips for painting trim, doors and baseboards.
- Prep work is almost always gonna be the most dreaded on every project you do. But the most important step of DIYing. Fill all large holes and cracks with wood filler. And sand any paint drips or imperfections that existed beforehand.
- Most people will suggest a coat of primer, but if you’re using Insl-x Cabinet Coat it is not required!
- Always use a 2 inch trim brush preferably this Wooster angled brush. I recently used a different brand and I always come back to Wooster for their quality.
- Taking the time to use painter’s tape to tape off at the bottom of the trim is something I recommend. This prevents any of the paint getting onto your floor surface and just makes the job easier.
- If painting baseboards that have carpet up against them, you can use a piece of cardboard to tuck under the baseboard as you paint along.
- If applying painter’s tape, make sure you pull the tape off before paint completely dries to prevent pulling the paint off.
What is the most popular color for baseboards?
The popular paint color for baseboards is white. Our last house I chose to paint all doors, interior trim and baseboards Alabaster by Sherwin Williams. Other best white paint colors are Pure White, Swiss Coffee, and Simply White. I listed a few of these colors with picture examples in my Best Neutral Paint Colors in 2022 article.
A trend that has made its way back into our homes is having a contrasting color for the doors and baseboards. I see more and more people painting their doors and baseboards a darker color. It’s a great way to bring character into your space and break up all the neutral colors. I have personally fallen in love with contrasting trim and have started transitioning our trim to the color Revere Pewter.
Semi gloss is going to be your best choice when choosing a paint finish for your trim and doors. It is the easiest to clean and holds up well to high traffic areas. I personally chose to go one lower on the paint sheen scale. A satin finish is also a good inbetween if you don’t like super shiny surfaces but still want the durability of a semi-gloss finish.
If you don’t have a ton of doors and trim to paint you can probably get away with a quart of paint. I recently painted one door and maybe 10 feet of trim and it looks like I barely touched the paint can. If you have a lot of door casings, crown molding, doors and baseboards it would be a good idea to just order a gallon.
I do recommend that you at least lightly scuff your baseboards and trim with a sanding block. 100 or 120 grit sanding block should do the job. On top of that I would use liquid sandpaper, not only is it going to prep your surface for paint it will clean any gloss or grime off the surface.