A Detailed Explanation About the Types of Paints and Their Uses

Types of paints and their uses
When the first forms of paint were invented, their use was meant purely for carrying messages and expression through generations in art form. Today, with technological advancement and know-how, there are many different variations available in the market, each having a specific purpose. This Buzzle post lists out the types of paints and their uses.
Color Me Ochre!
Recently, South African archaeologists submitted findings that suggest that an ochrer-based mixture, which is a 100,000 years old, can be used as paint.
Paints are emulsions of varied ratios of pigments, binders, solvents, and additives that are applied to a substrate, which forms an adhering film upon drying. It is used for protection and decoration of that substance.
Back in the day, they were made from organic materials found in nature and were used separately, upon which a gummy substance was later added for adherence. Plants, fruits, oils, soil, and other natural materials were used to create the same.

Today, it is manufactured using a lot of synthetic and chemical mixtures to give us the color palette and specific properties that we know of today. We will be looking at what a paint comprises, its types, and its application in different areas.
Components of Paint
Every paint consists of the following four components in varied ratios based on the desired requirements:
■ Pigments
■ Binders
■ Solvents
■ Additives
Pigments: Pigments are insoluble, fine-sized particles that give the paint its color and opacity. They should:
■ Provide color
■ Hide substrates and previous coloring
■ Improve strength of the paint film
■ Improve adhesion
■ Reduce gloss and cost
■ Be chemically inert, unchanged by changing temperature, non-toxic and non-corrosive, and low on oil absorption
■ Fast to light, meaning it should be able to resist deterioration by sunlight or fumes
Binders: These substances bind the pigment particles together and hold them onto the surface. They can be in the form of alkyds, polyester, acrylics, vinyls, natural resins, or oil.
Solvents: They are used alone or undergo binding with alcohol or ether alcohol to form water-soluble resins.
■ Mostly available at a low cost
■ Odorless
■ Non-toxic
■ Non-flammable
Additives: Substances that are added in small quantities to modify or improve the properties of finished paint are called additives. Glaze is a form of additive used to increase translucency.
Types of Paints
It is a solution of resins in drying oil. It hardens on evaporation of its volatile solvents, through oxidation or both. It gives a varied gloss on the surface based on the type of varnish used. It is impervious to moisture. Lacquer is a form of varnish, which gives a hard, durable finish.
Uses: Indoor and outdoor use, furniture, wood finishing, pianos, bathtubs, sinks, ships, and boats.
Oil Paint
Oil paint on palette
This consists of pigments suspended in linseed oil, which act as the binder, then a drier which controls its drying time, and then mineral spirits or other thinners to adjust its fluidity. As the thinner evaporates, the pigment and oil dry to form an elastic skin. The oil absorbs oxygen from the air (called curing) and bonds the paint film to the substrate. It is slow-drying, has a strong odor, and comes in flat to high-gloss range.
Uses: Interior and exterior painting, fine arts, bare wood, drywalls, iron work, furniture, paint-on-glass animation.
Enamel Paint
Enamel paint
It is a form of varnish with added pigments. It gives a hard, glossy finish. There are three main types of enamel paint. Painted enamel is different from this form and used in nail decoration.
Floor enamel : For concrete, stairs, porches, patios, basements.
Fast-dry enamel : For fridge, countertops, industrial purposes.
High-temperature enamel : For engines, exhaust, brakes, barbecue machines.
Latex Paint
Latex paint applying on wall
These are water-based paints that don't generally require a primer (except over metal or wood and highly alkaline surfaces). They are fast-drying, cost-efficient, easy to apply and clean, durable, flexible, and give a defined gloss finish.
Uses: Exterior of houses, walls and trims, concrete, wood, aluminum siding, and stucco.
Water-reducible Paint
These are water-based paints, which include latex products as well as new synthetic polymers. They are scratch and stain resistant, washable, fast-drying, less susceptible to fires, give full gloss, have low odor, and are less toxic.
Uses: Interior, external vaults, steel, iron, aluminum, and masonry.
Alkyd Paint
These are the most commonly used solvent-soluble resins that are used in surface coating. It has a low molecular weight and oil-modified polyesters. It is durable, can withstand varying temperatures, and is less toxic, slow-drying, but more flexible.
Uses: These come in 5 different sheens which in turn give them varied properties and, thus, are used accordingly.
Flat : Gives a velvety texture and produces a rich, slightly reflective surface. It is used to paint walls, ceilings, metal, fully-cured plaster, wall work and non-primed woodwork.
Eggshell : It has sheen like that of an eggshell, highly washable, but less effective at covering imperfections. It is used on exterior or interior walls and on doors and trims.
Low-Luster: It is moisture-resistant, highly washable, and protects walls from staining and dirt accumulation. It is less effective at hiding imperfections. It gives a good sheen to the surface. It is used in kitchens, bathrooms, nurseries, and schools.
Semi-Gloss: It is used to emphasize detail (especially woodwork), creates a shiny surface, provides moisture and stain protection, and is easy to clean. It is used in kitchens, interior doors and trims, and exterior sidings and trims.
High-Gloss: It is highly washable, gives a great sheen and high-quality appearance, and is durable and provides a slight glare. It is used on walls, woodwork, trims, furniture, toys, and ceilings.
Urethane-modified Paint
Urethane-modified Paint
It is a one-component finishing material used for abrasion resistance, especially on household materials.
Uses: Wood floors, furniture, and paneling.
Epoxy Paint
Epoxy Paint
It is a two-part formulation that is mixed together thoroughly before use. It is extremely hard and durable, and dries with a high gloss. It is smooth and easy to clean.
Uses:There are four common types of epoxy, each with its own properties and usage:
Alkyd Paint
Polyester Epoxy : It shows the physical durability, toughness, and chemical resistance of epoxy along with the clarity and color-retention ability of polyester. It is also stain and moisture resistant. It is used in cast iron, cast steel, cast aluminum application, industrial and automotive application, and terrazzo and chip flooring.
Acrylic Epoxy: It provides resistance to acid/alkali,staining, yellowing and scuffing along with toughness, and durability and serviceability. It is used on concrete, plaster, restrooms, food-processing plants, wood, drywall, stairs, dairies, etc.
Polyamide Epoxy: It has outstanding toughness, abrasion resistance, and high adhesion qualities. It is used on things that require water immersion; in general, industrial offshore structures, storage tanks, and bridges.
Siloxane Epoxy: It has fast-curing properties along with mar and stain resistance, and gloss and color stability. It is used in the marines, on bridges, kennels, schools, jails, hospitals, and high-moisture areas.
Acrylic Paint
Acrylic Paint
It has suspended pigments in a polymerized acrylic emulsion. It is soluble in water but becomes water-resistant upon drying. It has superior chemical and stain resistance and is immune to chipping, scratches, and scarring.
Uses: Based on the type of acrylic paint, it can be used on wood, for fine arts, on walls, ceilings, woodwork, primed steel, and masonry.
Aluminum Paint
It is formulated with aluminum flake pigment mixed in varnish. The flakes come to the surface upon drying and form a reflective coating. It is highly resistant to weathering.
Uses: On wood, steel, and for masonry.
Shellac Paint
It's a paint used to give effects to the surface without pigmentation, and used as a finishing agent, thinned with alcohol and dried in warm air to prevent clouding. It is fast-drying. Shellac in its natural form is edible.
Uses: Finishing wood floors, cycles, cloth, trims, furniture, and food (in natural form).
Wood Stain
Wood Stain
It consists of a coloring pigment either dissolved or suspended in a solvent or finishing agent. It has low viscosity and soaks into the surface without forming a film over it.
Uses: It is primarily used to color wood, while keeping its natural look intact.
Anti-Graffiti Paint
It is a coating that prevents the graffiti paint from bonding with the surface. It comes in two forms:
Sacrificial Coating :It is a washable coating where it removes both the graffiti and the coating when a high-pressure washer is used. It is called sacrificial since the coating itself gets removed upon washing and has to be reapplied.
Non-bonding (Permanent) Coating: It only removes the artwork, while the coating remains intact.
Uses: It is used primarily on walls to avoid graffiti artwork from becoming permanent.
Anti-climb Paint
It is a non-drying, slippery type of paint that has an oil coating, and is used on surfaces that are used in burglary and vandalism attempts.
Uses: On lampposts, walls, and fences.
Anti-fouling Paint
These are made with organotin compounds, biocides, or poisonous copper, which prevent growth of marine organisms like algae and barnacles from sticking to the ship. It can be of two forms:
Hard-bottom Paint: It maybe made with silicon or Teflon, which makes the surface sticky and prevents organisms from adhering.
Contact-leaching paint: It forms a surface film that is porous and hold biocides or toxic chemicals that are released slowly.
Uses: On ship or boat hulls.
In today's day and age, there is a lot of choice out there based on our needs and the results we want. Paints are a form of expression and protection that make our surroundings a more colorful place to live in. So, what kind of paint are you looking for?