Enamels refer to paints that produce hard, glossy finishes. Enamels are mostly oil-based paints and are available in semi-gloss (satin) to a highly glossy finish, with heat resistant properties. They are widely used on metal and wooden surfaces. Since they offer easy maintenance and washability, they can also be applied to a small part of the kitchen/bathroom walls.
There are two types of enamels. 1. Oil Based 2. Water-Based
Oil-based enamels produce a hard, durable and glossy layer. However, oil-based paints take longer time to dry. While water-based enamels dry quicker, they produce less glossy finish than traditional oil-based ones.
Polyurethane (PU) coatings are enamels for wooden surfaces. They, like regular enamels, impart hard and glossy finish on wood, thus enhancing beauty and life of wooden surfaces. PU coatings are mostly oil-based, however, water-based PU finishes are available.
Enamel can provide easy to maintain, washable surfaces when used on walls. But due to their very high gloss, paintbrush or roller marks may become visible. It is hence advisable to use enamels, on smaller areas on walls.