What Are Pantone Paints?


The Pantone Matching System, or PMS, has been developed as a way for designers, printers and other people working with color to ensure precise color continuity. It standardizes color tones and means that different manufacturers or printers in different locations can easily reproduce and discuss specific colors without needing to meet. Pantone paints are paints that match up to this system.

The Background of Pantone

  • The Pantone system was developed in the 1950s when Pantone, a commercial printing company, refined its stock of inks into a simple system. Now sold as color swatches bound in a fan-style book, with each color given its own Pantone code, the Pantone system is an easy way to ensure color consistency in branding and printing. Governments even refer to the colors of flags by the Pantone color ascribed to them.

How It Works

  • Other systems of color standardization do exist. CMYK is often used in print and refers to the percentage of cyan, magenta, yellow and black in a color while RGB is used on screen and refers to the percentage of red, blue or green in a color. The Pantone system excels as it allows for colors that cannot be made within the CMYK or RGB systems, such as metallic tones, because the Pantone system is based on 13 base pigments rather than the 4 of CMYK or the 3 of RGB.

Paint Development

  • In 2006 Pantone brought out a range of paints in partnership with Fine Paints of Europe, which has meant that designers and architects around the world can easily match a Pantone shade in a paint color, which is especially useful for incorporating branding into interiors or ensuring a good match with a specific color.

Paint Quality

  • The quality of Pantone paint is very high, using fine pigments to ensure an ideal match with the Pantone shade. Oils and resins are used in place of cheap fillers to ensure a quality paint finish and good quality of color, which means that the wall paints can be scrubbed clean without altering the color.

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