Can You Paint Eggshell Over Semi Gloss?


Last updated: June 16, 2023

Discover Whether you Can Paint Eggshell over Semi Gloss and How to do it in this Expert Painters Guide

Can you paint eggshell over semi gloss

Semi glosses are some of the most aesthetically appealing finishes, which explains why they’re a favorite with homeowners, professional painters, and avid DIYers. They’re also the most versatile finishes you can have on any surface, whether bathroom or kitchen walls. 

Semi-gloss is a smooth formula that’s highly resistant to moisture. This gives it a delicate texture that may not support strong adhesion unless you prime the surface. 

So that presents an important question: can you paint eggshells over semi gloss? In this guide, we take you through the basics of semi gloss, whether you can paint eggshell over semi-gloss paint without sanding, and everything else in between. 

Can You Paint Eggshell Over Semi Gloss 

Yes, you can paint eggshells over semi-gloss paint. Eggshell paint has a broad surface coverage, allowing it to stick to most surfaces easily. Of course, you may not achieve the same smooth semi-gloss finish with eggshell paint, but sturdiness is guaranteed. You can apply eggshell paint on any surface though the preparation methods may differ from one substrate to the next.

Why Should You Consider Using Eggshell: 6 Reasons

While painting your home, the type of paint you use matters. There are different types of spray paint for semi-gloss, but not all can suit your project.

That’s when it becomes practical to use eggshell, the most attractive, one-size-fits-all formula that will be sure to give you a satisfying outcome.

Below are six good reasons why you should consider using eggshell paint sheen on your semi-gloss painting project. 

1. Adhesion

Eggshell paint has solid adhesion, making it the ultimate choice for painting over smooth surfaces like semi-gloss. Since semi-gloss paint is moisture resistant, achieving maximum adhesion with most paint can be challenging.  

But eggshells’ impressive bonding capabilities and excellent surface coverage make them the best choice for glossier surfaces. 

2. Budget-friendly

Honestly speaking, paint jobs are costly. Even the cumulative cost of minor renovations and repainting projects can be expensive. The same, however, cannot be said for eggshell paint. 

The market price for eggshell paint is relatively reasonable compared to other paint types. So if you’ve been looking for a budget-friendly painting project, go for eggshell paint. 

3. Sturdy Performance

The word eggshell conjures images of a highly fragile painting solution that can disintegrate at the slightest mishap. 

But unlike real eggshells, this paint formula is sturdy, highly durable, and resistant to erosion, making it the ideal choice for high-traffic surfaces and locations like kitchens, bathrooms, and children’s rooms. 

Even better is that this formula is not too shiny, nor does it have a matte-like look. It is the one painting solution that professional painters and hobbyists highly recommend.

4. Ease of Use

If you’ve ever done any painting job, you might have encountered a lapping problem where the bordering lines of paint overlay each other. This is a common occurrence with glossier paints. 

But given the coarse nature of eggshell paint, you would experience little to no overlapping. You can even pause or take breaks while spraying painting eggshells over semi-gloss paint and not worry about overlapping lines showing up. 

5. Easy Cleaning

If you like hosting parties at your place or your doors are always open to kids, it means your walls have been bearing the brunt of it. Glossy paints are easy to clean and maintain, while flat paints can be a nightmare. 

Again, here’s an instance where eggshell paint will make your life easier, thanks to its rich sheen that keeps stains and marks at bay. 

6. Flaw Concealment

Smooth shines tend to have higher reflectivity, making even the tiniest bumps on the wall visibly clear. The glossier the finish, the more noticeable the imperfections. 

But grittier paints, of which eggshell is one, are an excellent choice for concealing such imperfections like bumps, cracks, grooves, and pitting. And since eggshell paints are highly durable, they can effectively hold up against daily damages.

How To Paint Eggshell Over Semi Gloss

Now that you understand what eggshell paint is and why it should be part of your next spray painting project, here are the steps to painting over gloss paint.

Among the things you’ll need include:

  • Old rags.
  • A primer.
  • 150 grit sandpaper.
  • Spray paint in your choice of colors.
  • Eye goggles and work gloves.
  • Wooden stick.
  • Screw driver.

Once you’ve gathered all the necessary tools and materials, follow these steps to paint eggshells over semi-gloss paint. 

Start by Tidying the Room 

The success of a painting job depends on surface preparation. Always ensure that the place you want to paint is clean and conducive for spray painting. 

In this case, ensure the room is cleaned and tidied up in readiness for painting. Remove the curtains from the wall, and strip off any peeling or worn-out paint. You should also move the furniture to another room. 

Next, use painter’s tape to cover windows, door frames, and baseboards to prevent paint spills and unnecessary cleaning afterward. 

Take the same preventative measures with the floor, covering it with a drop cloth. With that done, move on to the next step of preparing the surface. 

Surface Preparation

The better you prepare the substrate before painting, the more satisfying the outcome of your work will be. 

To ensure the best finish, prepare your surface with a good wash. Washing helps rid the surface of unwanted dirt and debris that may compromise adhesion and the quality of your work. 

Wipe with a damp cloth or use liquid detergent with a soft brush to wash the walls to reveal any impurities or holes in the wall. If there are small cracks, you can fix these with a compound and then allow them to dry before taking the next step. 

If you intend to paint a highly humid room like the kitchen or bathroom, use a TSP (trisodium phosphate) to clean the wall thoroughly. Smooth sheen paints are best known for being humid-resistant, and that can make it impossible to achieve maximum adhesion. 

You can avoid this frustration by lightly sanding the wall with 150-grit sandpaper to give the surface an additional texture for the paint to bond better. 

Priming The Surface

Using a primer is highly recommended when spray painting eggshells over semi-gloss paint to provide a better anchor layer for the paint. 


You’re now set to apply your eggshell paint. If using new paint, blend it gently for 2-3 minutes and stir with a stick. If spray painting, shake the can thoroughly for at least five minutes. 

Start by painting along the edges of the wall, moving up to the ceiling (you can use a roller for this), and allowing it to dry before painting the walls. 

Move from top to bottom, and use a roller gently to avoid creating marks. In case of bumps or ridges, add another coat of paint until the surface is even and smooth. Remember to take breaks between painting to unclog the spray paint can for any clogs that can hinder even discharge of the paint.

Can You Use Eggshell Over Eggshell?

Eggshell paint is neither too glossy to cause adhesion problems nor is it in the form of matte paint. Instead, it’s something in between. 

So yes, you can paint over an eggshell if the surface is freshly painted. Painting eggshell becomes tricky if you attempt to paint over surfaces like wood or old walls. 

In such situations, it’s best to first sand the area before applying eggshell paint or use a deglossing agent to remove some sheen. 

Do I Need to Sand Eggshells Before Painting Over Semi Gloss?

You sure do because using eggshell paint on a smooth surface may not support strong adhesion. Since adhesion determines the beautiful outcome of your work, sanding is necessary before putting in new paint.

If you consider this too much work, you can use a deglosser instead of sanding, although it’s still recommended that you lightly sand the surface for the best results. 

Should I Sand Between Coats of Semi-gloss Paint?  

You should only sand between coats of semi-gloss paint if there are noticeable impurities in the initial coat. Sanding away these impurities helps prevent them from being visible under the second coat. 

If you don’t want to sand semi gloss paint coats, you should handle the first coat carefully, ensuring it doesn’t develop imperfections at any stage. If sanding becomes necessary, use superior-grade sandpaper. 

Using fine sandpaper will prolong the process, especially if the first coat has many defects, while using too coarse sandpaper will leave sanding marks that will require additional layers of paint. That’s why using the right sandpaper for the job is crucial. 

Is Deglosser Better Than Sanding? 

Let’s face it. Sometimes we get too lazy to prepare the surface before painting. We just want to apply new paint over an old finish right away. 

Unfortunately, taking this shortcut will only earn you more frustration when the paint refuses to bond appropriately due to dirt and other surface contaminants. 

You can bough, roughen or treat the old finish to facilitate better adhesion. So should you sand or degloss the surface? Both options are good, but sanding is time and energy-consuming. 

Even if you use an effective tool like an orbital sander, it will take several hours to sand down an entire surface. 

Deglossing, however, is effortless. This process only requires a deglossing agent that you can apply on the surface and allow to sit for 30 minutes before painting. 

That doesn’t mean this option is all easy without its advantages. For one, it’s a highly toxic process that’s harmful to your health, so you should exercise caution. 

Always wear goggles and protective gloves when handling this formula. The same applies to sanding. Wearing protective gear helps keep the harmful sanding dust at bay. So if you observe the necessary safety precautions de-glossing is much better because it’s less time-consuming. 

How Long Should Semi-Gloss Paint Dry Between Coats?

The time it takes for semi-gloss paint to dry between coats depends on a few factors, the most common being the technique used in the application.

Applying thicker coats will naturally take longer to dry, unlike thinner coats, which take 30 minutes to 3 hours to dry to touch before adding another layer. 

Another important factor is temperature and humidity, which significantly influences drying time. It’s wise to refer to the temperature ranges indicated on the paint canister and ensure your paint is within the specified ranges for optimal outlines.

FAQS – Can You Paint Eggshell Over Semi Gloss?

Can I paint over semi-gloss without sanding?

Yes, you can if you follow the steps and guidelines for painting over semi-gloss paints without sanding. First, start by washing the walls with a chemical cleaner to prepare for painting. Next, you prime the walls as per the instructions on the can before applying a semi-gloss finish. 

What Makes Semi-Gloss Look Patchy?

Patchiness is caused by applying fewer coats on the semi gloss surface. Failure to apply enough coats leads to patchiness once the paint is dry, and colors from the old finish might be easily noticeable through the new finish. You can avoid this by allowing the paint to dry and applying several additional coats to create a more polished result.

Why Is My Semi-Gloss Paint Peeling? 

Poor adhesion is the primary catalyst for your semi-gloss paint peeling. The same adhesion problems may result from painting on a dirty surface. Your semi-gloss paint may also peel if the coats you apply are too thick. Avoid this by applying thin coats that dry faster and create a better finish. 

What paint can go over semi-gloss?

You can use nearly any paint over semi-gloss paints provided you can determine if the semi-gloss finish is oil-based or latex. If your semi-gloss paint is oil-based, use an oil based paint. If it’s latex paint, using latex-based paint is a better idea. 

Conclusion: Can You Paint Eggshell Over Semi Gloss?

Answering this question is easy now that you’re conversant with eggshell paint and semi-gloss finishes. You also understand the aesthetic qualities and sturdiness of eggshell paint, so much so that you can’t wait to start your next painting project. 

But can you paint semi gloss over semi gloss? Yes. And not only that, but cleaning eggshells is much easier than other flat paints meaning maintaining eggshell paint on semi-gloss finishes will be the least of your worries. 

While you may lose some shine with eggshell paint since it’s neither glossy nor matte-like, you can be sure it will last much longer. The key to achieving the best finish is employing the appropriate application techniques beginning with surface preparation, sanding, and priming down to the last detail. 

Any other related questions, like whether can you paint eggshell over semi-gloss without sanding, are covered in this guide, and we hope you find it a helpful resource for your next painting job. 

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