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The Cabinet Center / Blog  / The Most Common Type of Cabinet Finishes

The Most Common Type of Cabinet Finishes

When it comes to fully fleshing out your dream home, there are certain changes that can make a big difference. Some of them are big themselves – like knocking out a wall or updating all your appliances – but that doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. Sometimes the smallest touch can have the biggest impact, and your cabinet finishes definitely make that list. In the same way that a fresh coat of paint can transform a room, the perfect cabinet finish can transform your kitchen. Although it’s a straightforward process, there can be enough options to make it feel like anything other than a straightforward decision. If you’re thinking about giving your cabinets a refresh, here is a quick guide to the most common types of cabinet finishes.

Stains are a great way to completely update your existing cabinet colors, and there are a few methods to go about doing so. The first is spraying, which can produce a more uniform effect but is also a more technical process. The second is wiping, which can be easier, but will absolutely cause variation in the color transferred onto the wood depending on factors such as pressure, the amount of product being distributed evenly or unevenly, and the way it absorbs into the wood. To be sure, some people prefer the wiped effect more, as it can complement a rustic or antique aesthetic. Regardless of which method of application you might prefer, stains will have more variation in final product than other finishes – like paint – and can only transform the wood so much. So if you want a slightly darker wood, stains may be a great option, but if you want to completely change the direction of color, you may want to look into paints.

Painting, much like walls and unlike stains, offers a straightforward opaque finish. Paints can be a little easier to mentally work with than stains simply because what you see is what you get. These are among the most popular choices on the market, and offer the widest variety in colors since they completely coat and transform your cabinets. It is important to note, however, that they can require some maintenance in terms of chips, marks, and – depending on the type of paint – may be affected by finger oils and residues. Paints are a great choice for those who want to take their cabinetry in a completely different direction without being limited by the current materials and colors in their kitchen.

Glazed finishes are not as common as paints or stains, but they can add the most beautiful effect to any kitchen and are well worth the consideration. Glazes are hand-applied to existing cabinetry and can add a level of depth and dimension that can completely revitalize them while still accenting all their natural features. A standard glaze is only applied to the crevices of the door and can accent and emphasize the contours and edges. A brushed glaze, by contrast, is applied to the entirety of the door and will add a beautiful appearance and texture throughout your kitchen.

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