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Paint Colour Matching, The Low Down

A few companies offer paint colour matching services, where they will produce a colour for you from anything - a colour swatch, a piece of material, or a specific brand’s paint range. Let’s take a quick look at how this works.

How does paint colour matching work?

There are two levels. The most basic is that a company can scan a colour swatch, and find a colour in their own paint range that is the closest match. Dulux does this, for example. It’s not going to be an exact match, but it’ll be the closest equivalent from their palette.

The second and more advanced level, is that a company can scan a colour swatch and create the exact recipe of colourants to reproduce that colour. Valspar does this, for example. It’s much more accurate than the first option, because the formula for the colour is actually being created rather than just closely matched.

How accurate is paint colour matching?

If we take the more advanced option, it can be quite good. It sometimes depends on the size, quality and finish of the swatch you’re trying to match as the scanner has a better basis to work from  - a nice large flat sample vs a scrappy little bit of something, nothing too glossy.

Some companies will allow you to match popular colours from other paint brands. That’s fine, and you’ll get something quite close - but there’s one reason this is never going to be exact.

Every paint company has a base formulation, which is then carefully blended with pigments to create the final coloured paint. If you’re colour matching, then you’re using a different company’s base with the other’s pigment combination. The base formulation will also be very different in terms of the ingredients used, the coverage, depth and finish - so the final look might be close but won’t be exact.

Can you match any paint colour?

Pretty much. Any paint colour that you can get a decent swatch of has the potential to be colour matched by scanning. Remember the paint that is produced will look very different in the tin to the final finished and dried colour after it’s had two coats.

Can I get COAT colour matched?

Probably. But we do make a tiny voodoo doll if you do - just a warning. Joking. But a couple of things to bear in mind - both linked to the actual paint formulation. COAT is a high-grade paint, full of expensive ingredients to give it spot-on consistency, great depth and a rich durable finish. It’s also uniquely formulated to work with the pigments that give such perfect colours. Colour matching using another brand will give a lower quality paint and a close (but not perfect) colour.

Does COAT do paint colour matching?

We’ve gone the other way and curated our range of colours to hand-pick the best. We’re not about having thousands of options, just the best ones so you can confidently choose and crack on.

That said if you’re dead set on a vibe from another company, we're not going to cry about it. We can definitely help you out - so just drop us a message.




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