Choosing a Finish Sheen — How Important Is What’s Trending Now?

Rod Lorenz

From low-luster to matte, the choice of sheen is an important decision in determining hardwood flooring's appearance.

You have so many decisions to make before you get to the part where you have gorgeous, new hardwood floors. You’ll have to pick out the type of hardwood, its color or stain, and the finish itself. Many homeowners turn to current trends in magazines, TV shows, and online sites to help them make these decisions.

However, trends come and go, so it’s essential to make the final choice based on your personal preferences. When it comes to finishes, there are some currently popular variations, appearance-wise. Let’s discuss what their benefits are:

Why Matte Finishes Are Popular

Low-luster matte finishes are popular because of easier maintenance. High-gloss finishes used to be a homeowner’s first choice, but they tend to show imperfections on the floor. Whether it’s something temporary like specks of dust, or damage like dents and scratches, most homeowners don’t want to worry about that.

One important upside about trends that are based on practicality, as much as looks, is that they tend to stick around longer. Even if other options become more popular at some point, low-luster finishes will undoubtedly retain their appeal.

For homeowners who aren’t looking to change their floor as soon as something else becomes the trendiest option, that longevity can be a crucial deciding factor.

Satin Finishes

Satin is a great middle-of-the-road option for homeowners who want their floors to have a sleek look. They have a bit of subdued sheen, but they don’t highlight imperfections as much as .

A satin finish gives a similar feel to a room that a glossy one does, but it’s much easier to maintain. Since they combine the best of both worlds, satin finishes are a good choice for the future and likely will never be (completely) out of style.

Low-Sheen Matte Finishes

One consideration about matte finishes is that—while they really bring out the wood’s natural beauty—they look the best on high-quality hardwood. On lower-quality hardwood, matte can look too subdued or even make the floor look dull, even with best installers. Still, it’s a pretty safe choice for the years to come.

Matte finishes are especially useful for matching to counters and furniture. If you incorporate a matte finish well, your design will look put-together and stay on trend even many years down the road.

Here at Ralph’s, we are dedicated to making our customers happy—not just for the first few years of the floor’s life, but for as long as it lasts. That’s why we believe it’s essential to choose your hardwood floor based on your preferences and design plan, regardless of the trends. Visit our showroom to see what we can offer!

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