How to Match Ceiling Paint

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Matching ceiling paint can be a challenge, especially if you have an older home or are trying to touch up areas that get dirty, like the kitchen ceiling. Plus, paint naturally turns dull over time. If you want to match its current color and not put on a fresh coat of new color, you have a couple options. In the end, however, you might still need to paint the entire ceiling if you cannot exactly match your ceiling paint color.

Examine your ceiling. Does it have a flat, glossy or eggshell finish? Glossy is very shiny; eggshell has a low sheen. Flat or matte paint is dull-looking. Most ceilings use flat paint. When you buy new paint, you will need to select the correct finish for your base paint.

Bring a paint chip (if your ceiling is peeling) to a home improvement store or paint supply store. Many of these stores have special equipment that scans the paint and reads its formula of dye colors. Once the store knows the recipe of your current paint, it can create paint of the same color.

If you don’t have a paint chip, bring home paint sample cards from a paint supply store. Select cards from the family of colors you think closely matches your ceiling. Hold the cards up against the ceiling. Be sure to use an area with plenty of light so you can clearly see the colors.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you're covering a stained or repaired ceiling, be sure to use primer first. This will ensure full, even coverage. Be sure to test just a small, inconspicuous area for compatibility. If the paint isn't exactly the same, you may want to try again with a different paint color or simply paint the whole room's ceiling.
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