Valspar vs Sherwin Williams Paint: Which Is Better?

Imagine you’re getting ready for a paint project, so you head to the store to see the available options. Once you’re there, you’re startled by all of the options, particularly since many have similar colors, prices, and features. Then, you’re left wondering which is best. Fortunately, by comparing Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams, you can start getting answers.

Valspar and Sherwin-Williams paints are both solid choices. However, each shine for different reasons. Valspar is incredibly durable and easy to clean and maintain, but its thinner texture requires more coats. Sherwin-Williams has premium features and better coverage, but that comes at a cost.

However, the two paints also stand out in other ways. If you’re trying to decide between Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams paint, here’s what you need to consider.

Valspar vs Sherwin Williams

Valspar vs Sherwin-Williams: Key Points

When choosing paint for a project, it’s normal to focus on color and finish. However, far more should be part of the equation. By exploring the various features and traits of the paint brands, you can ensure the paint you select is best suited to your needs.

If you’re debating between Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams paint, you’ll want to focus mainly on the difference when making your decision. Both companies are leaders in the industry, but that doesn’t mean they measure up to one another across the board.

Here are some key points you’ll want to consider as you choose between Valspar and Sherwin-Williams:

 Valspar PaintSherwin-Williams Paint
Product Line GoodExtensive
Texture and ConsistencyThinThick
Fade ResistanceGoodGood
VOC LevelsZero to moderateZero to moderate
Ease of UseEasy to useEasy to use
Coverage200 to 400 sq. ft. per gallon300 to 400 sq. ft. per gallon
Number of Coats2 to 41 to 2
Drying TimeDry to the touch in less than 1 hour, ready for a new coat in 2 to 4 hoursDry to the touch in about 1 hour, ready for a new coat in 3 to 4 hours, fully dry in 24 to 48 hours
CleaningEasy to clean, stands up to scrubbingEasy to clean, stands up to scrubbing
PriceModerate per can, higher total if you need more coatsExpensive

What Is Valspar Paint?

Valspar PaintValspar is another large paint manufacturer that’s been in business since it launched in 1806. Technically, Valspar is now part of the Sherwin-Williams Company, though it functions as a unique brand.

Valspar stands out most when it comes to ease of use and durability. It’s a brand that focuses on long-lasting results while ensuring it’s simple to apply, maintain, and clean. Plus, if you choose a Valspar paint with a built-in primer, you can reduce the amount of work involved in completing a paint project.

One area where some buyers experience challenges is that Valspar paint is far thinner than many alternatives. As a result, it can require more coats to get an even final look.

Valspar paint also dries incredibly quickly. While this is a benefit in some cases, it can increase the odds of streaking, especially in warm, dry conditions.


  • Easy to use
  • Durable
  • Easy to clean
  • Often has a built-in primer


  • Requires up to 4 coats
  • Quick drying can lead to streaks

Valspar Paint Types

Overall, Valspar has a wide array of paint lines available. While there aren’t as many as you find with Sherwin-Williams – causing Sherwin-Williams to come out ahead in this part of the Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams debate – there is a broad enough selection to handle most people’s needs.

Here is an overview of the Valspar paint types:

Interior Paint

  • Valspar Reserve
  • Valspar Signature
  • Valspar Ultra
  • Valspar 2000
  • Valspar 4000
  • Valspar ExpressCoat
  • Valspar Ultra Ceiling
  • Valspar Signature Ceiling
  • Valspar Color-Changing Ceiling
  • Valspar Cabinet & Furniture
  • Valspar The Perfect White

Exterior Paint

  • Valspar Defense
  • Valspar Duramax
  • Valspar SeasonPlus
  • Valspar SeasonFlex
  • Valspar StormCoat
  • Valspar Ultra
  • Valspar Door & Trim
  • Valspar The Perfect White
  • Valspar 4000

What Is Sherwin-Williams Paint?

Sherwin WilliamsSherwin-Williams has been a major player in the paint industry since it was founded in 1866. The brand is considered premium, resulting in exceptional quality in many cases. With an array of company-operated retail locations, shoppers can also find Sherwin-Williams paint at various hardware stores, making it reasonably accessible.

With Sherwin-Williams paint, buyers can choose from more than 1,700 colors. Plus, the company is a leader in color matching technology, potentially allowing shoppers to secure more color options beyond what’s seen on paint chips.

When it comes to popular paint lines, the Sherwin-Williams Emerald is one of the most commonly used. However, the company offers a broad selection of products, each with unique benefits and drawbacks. Additionally, Sherwin-Williams regularly releases products with new features and other advancements because it heavily invests in research and development (R&D).

Overall, Sherwin-Williams paint comes with just a few potential drawbacks. Since it offers premium paint, the price may be higher than some people want to pay. Additionally, touchups don’t inherently blend as well as with other paint brands, which could be problematic if the paint is used in high-traffic areas or on high-touch surfaces.


  • Easy to use
  • Durable
  • Leading Color-Matching Technology
  • R&D focused
  • Touchup blending is a challenge
  • High price

Sherwin-Williams Paint Types

As you’d expect with a major paint brand, Sherwin-Williams has over a dozen individual paint lines among its exterior and interior paints. Some are designed for specific purposes, while others offer a different experience, more longevity, or other benefits.

Whether a paint line can meet your needs depends on the project and application approach. Here’s a quick list of the Sherwin-Williams paint types:

Interior Paint

  • Sherwin-Williams All Surface
  • Sherwin-Williams Captivate
  • Sherwin-Williams Cashmere
  • Sherwin-Williams Color to Go
  • Sherwin-Williams Color Accents
  • Sherwin-Williams Duration
  • Sherwin-Williams EcoSelect Zero VOC
  • Sherwin-Williams Emerald
  • Sherwin-Williams Eminence
  • Sherwin-Williams Faux Impressions
  • Sherwin-Williams Harmony
  • Sherwin-Williams Illusions
  • Sherwin-Williams Paint Shield
  • Sherwin-Williams Porch & Floor
  • Sherwin-Williams ProClassic
  • Sherwin-Williams Scuff Tuff
  • Sherwin-Williams SnapDry
  • Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint

Exterior Paint

  • Sherwin-Williams A-100
  • Sherwin-Williams All Surface
  • Sherwin-Williams Duration
  • Sherwin-Williams Emerald
  • Sherwin-Williams FlexTemp
  • Sherwin-Williams Latitude
  • Sherwin-Williams Porch & Floor
  • Sherwin-Williams Rejuvenate
  • Sherwin-Williams Resilience
  • Sherwin-Williams SnapDry
  • Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint
  • Sherwin-Williams SWP

What’s the Difference Between Valspar and Sherwin-Williams Paint?

Difference Between Valspar and Sherwin Williams Paint

Generally speaking, Valspar and Sherwin-Williams paints have quite a bit in common, which shouldn’t be a surprise since they’re both operated by the same parent company. However, that doesn’t mean the brands don’t stand apart in some areas, which could determine which option is best for your project.

Here’s a deeper dive into Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams paint debate.

Product Line Variety

While both Valspar and Sherwin-Williams have a large number of paint lines, you’ll find more options with Sherwin-Williams. Whether that’s considered a benefit depends on the nature of your paint project.

If you need certain specialized features, then you may have better luck with Sherwin-Williams. The brand offers paints for very specific situations, which could improve the performance if you choose paint for one of those scenarios.

However, the difference here isn’t critical if your project only requires a conventional paint. In that case, either brand can likely serve you well.

Texture and Consistency

Texture and consistency are areas where Sherwin-Williams and Valspar paint are notably different. Sherwin-Williams is a thick paint, but not to the point of being cumbersome.

With Sherwin-Williams paint, you can get better coverage in fewer coats. However, it isn’t thick to the point where drips are usually an issue. Additionally, you can opt for self-leveling versions that can avoid unevenness.

Plus, you can apply Sherwin-Williams paint using any typical approach. Whether you prefer a brush, roller, or sprayer, you can get solid results without streaking, unevenness, or runs.

With Valspar, you get a far thinner paint. In many cases, that can help you avoid issues like unevenness or texture problems once applied. However, you will need more coats to get the same level of coverage as you’d find with Sherwin-Williams.

Additionally, Valspar paint dries faster, partially because it’s thinner. This can sometimes lead to streaking, particularly if you go over the freshly applied paint while it’s still tacky.


Valspar paint is a top performer on the durability side of the equation. It’s exceptional at standing up to wear and tear, making it a solid choice for high-traffic areas or high-touch surfaces. Plus, you can scrub Valspar paint once it’s dried in most cases.

However, that doesn’t mean that Sherwin-Williams paint isn’t tough. It’ll also withstand wear and tear and can deal with some scrubbing. It isn’t as strong in this arena as Valspar, which is true about nearly every other paint brand.

Fade Resistance

When comparing Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams paint, the two perform similarly regarding fade resistance. Each brand has paint lines with UV-blocking technology to reduce fading. Plus, even those not designed for exterior use do well overall.

However, neither brand is technically a leader in fade resistance. Still, for most paint projects, the amount offered is suitable.


Technically, both Valspar and Sherwin-Williams are premium paint brands. Each has high-quality ingredients and features designed to improve the final look and overall durability.

However, Sherwin-Williams may have an edge since you can get an even appearance and solid coverage in fewer coats. This isn’t about the quality of the paint itself but how much those small differences can improve the painting experience.

VOC Levels

Overall, Sherwin-Williams and Valspar are similar when it comes to VOC levels. You can find zero and low VOC paints from both brands. As a result, if that’s a priority for you, either option can do the trick.

However, it’s important to note that VOC levels vary by paint line. Both brands produce products with moderate VOC levels, along with their zero or low-VOC paints. Since that’s the case, you’ll need to look at each line you’re considering to see if one brand is better for you.

Ease of Use

In a general sense, both Sherwin-Williams and Valspar paints are easy to use. You won’t typically have issues with the application, such as drips, as long as you apply the proper amount of paint each time.

With that said, Sherwin-Williams may be a better choice for many projects. It doesn’t require as many coats, reducing the workload. The odds of streaking are lower, making this paint a better choice for novices.


Another point where Sherwin-Williams outperforms Valspar is coverage. While both brands can potentially cover 400 sq. ft. with a single gallon, you’re far more likely to get that result with Sherwin-Williams.

On the low side, a gallon of Valspar paint may only cover 200 sq. ft. With Sherwin-Williams, the minimum is typically closer to 300 sq. ft., which is a significant difference.

However, you can balance the coverage by using the right painting approach. Often, you’ll have an easier time getting closer to the maximum coverage amount if you use a sprayer instead of a brush or roller. If that’s your plan for application, then these two paints can cover the same area with a gallon.

Number of Coats

While you can potentially get the same amount of coverage out of either paint, the number of coats you may need with Valspar paint is significantly higher than you find with Sherwin-Williams. In most cases, just one to two coats of Sherwin-Williams paint do the trick. However, that isn’t necessarily the case with Valspar.

Barring Valspar paint lines designed for one-coat coverage, most Valspar paints require two coats at a minimum. Since it’s a thinner paint, you may even need three or four coats to get full, even coverage. As a result, you may have to do up to four times the work if you use Valspar.

Drying Time

If short drying times are a priority, Valspar is a better choice than Sherwin-Williams. Valspar is a thinner paint, so it dries far quicker. Often, it’s dry to the touch in under an hour, and you only have two hours between coats for many of the paint lines, though some may require longer.

With Sherwin-Williams, the paint is usually dry to the touch in about an hour. However, drying times between coats range from three to four hours instead of the two hours you can get with many Valspar paints.


When it comes to cleaning, Valspar and Sherwin-Williams paint are both easy to manage. Each can stand up to some scrubbing, allowing you to tackle dirt, scuffs, and stains. Plus, both have product lines that are stain and dirt-resistant.


As for price, Sherwin-Williams paint costs more per can than Valspar. However, the price difference does vary depending on the paint lines you’re considering, as some are closer in price than others.

While that may make it seem like Valspar is the better choice from a cost perspective, you have to factor in the potential for lower amounts of coverage or requiring more coats. If you’re using a brush or roller, a single can of Valspar may only cover 200 sq. ft., while Sherwin-Williams usually handles at least 300 sq. ft.

Additionally, Sherwin-Williams typically only needs one or two coats, while Valspar may take up to four. As a result, you may spend more overall if you choose Valspar paint, as you’ll potentially need more gallons for your project.

Color Matching Valspar and Sherwin-Williams Paint

Color Matching Valspar and Sherwin Williams

In most cases, you can color-match paint between brands with relative ease. Most brands have a wide array of colors, so it isn’t overly challenging to find a Sherwin-Williams hue that’s similar to one offered by Valspar and vice versa.

However, if you want to take advantage of color-matching software, Sherwin-Williams is an industry leader in that department. As a result, you may have an easier time getting the right hue by going with Sherwin-Williams instead of Valspar.

Do You Need a Primer with Valspar Paint?

While using a primer is rarely a bad idea, you may be able to avoid it if you use Valspar paint. Most of the paint lines have a primer built into the paint, which could make skipping that step plausible.

However, if you’re covering dark paint with a lighter hue, it’s always best to use a primer. Similarly, if you’re dealing with a hard-to-cover color like black or red, primer could be a must if you want an even final look.

You’ll also want to use a primer if you’re painting a difficult material, such as plastics, metals, or most raw woods. The primer will create an even surface and help you avoid adhesion issues, making it worthwhile.

Do You Need to Prime Before Using Sherwin-Williams Paint?

Sherwin-Williams does have some paints that have built-in primer, allowing you to potentially skip a traditional primer. However, that feature isn’t as broadly available in the Sherwin-Williams paint lines as it is with Valspar.

Additionally, you still need a primer for challenging surfaces or when you’re covering dark colors with light. Otherwise, you may have adhesion issues or difficulties getting an even result.

Where to Buy Valspar Paint

If you’re shopping for Valspar paint, the easiest place to look is Lowe’s. You can find most popular paint lines there, making it a reasonable choice.

However, many independent home improvement or hardware stores also carry Valspar. If you don’t have a Lowe’s nearby or prefer to support a small business, this could be the better option.

Where to Buy Sherwin-Williams Paint

In most cases, you can buy Sherwin-Williams paint in one of two places. First, there are Sherwin-Williams retail stores. This option can be best if you want access to every paint line or would like to talk to an employee to determine which paint product is best for your project.

Alternatively, you can head to Lowe’s to buy many of the popular Sherwin-Williams paint lines. This can be a sound alternative if you want one of the most widely-used paint lines, don’t need much guidance from an employee, or aren’t near a Sherwin-Williams store.

Are There Alternatives to Valspar and Sherwin-Williams Paint?

Yes, there are alternatives to Valspar and Sherwin-Williams paint. One example is Benjamin Moore, a brand known for excellent coverage, high durability, great fade resistance, and other premium features. While it’s a higher-priced option, it’s potentially worth considering, depending on what you’re after in a paint.

On the lower-cost side, Behr has a moderate price tag, solid coverage, and a good array of colors. However, it’s harder to work with than Valspar or Sherwin-Williams. Additionally, it isn’t as durable and is harder to clean.

If price is your biggest factor, you could consider Glidden instead. It’s a low-cost paint, but it has a lower overall quality. Still, if you stick to the right paint lines, you may get what you need from it.

Which Paint Is Better, Valspar or Sherwin-Williams?

For Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams paint, both stand out for different reasons. Sherwin-Williams is a great choice if you prefer more coverage and fewer coats. For quicker drying times, Valspar may be a better option. However, you can’t go wrong with either brand as long as you understand its quirks.

Did you find out everything you wanted to know about Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams paint? If so, let us know in the comments section below. Also, if you know someone trying to decide between paint brands, please share the article.