Farrow & Ball vs Dulux – Which is the Best Paint for You?

Bob Thomas

Deciding between Dulux and Farrow & Ball for your next painting project? The choice isn’t easy.

As a qualified painter and decorator who has swirled brushes with both, I can tell you that each has its own merits and quirks.

Today, let’s embark on a comprehensive journey that will guide us through the nuances of Dulux and Farrow & Ball paints, from their coverage and durability to their prices and environmental impacts.

Quick Summary

If you’re short on time, here’s the quick rundown: Dulux offers a wide range of colors and finishes at an affordable price, and is easily available in most home improvement stores. On the other hand, Farrow & Ball, although pricier, is known for its rich pigments, luxurious sheen options, and environmentally friendly formulation. Both brands have strong followings, and the choice often comes down to your specific project needs, budget, and environmental considerations.

Overview

Dulux

Dulux, a global paint brand, is known for its affordability and extensive range of colors.

The brand is synonymous with dependable quality and has become a go-to choice for homeowners and decorators alike.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball, a British manufacturer, is known for its distinctive, richly pigmented paints.

Despite a higher price point, the brand’s commitment to environmental responsibility and unique, tastefully curated colors has earned it a devout following.

Coverage and Durability

Dulux

Dulux paints offer excellent coverage; a little goes a long way.

A couple of years ago, I painted a sizeable living room with Dulux’s “Pure Brilliant White.”

One can was all I needed for a beautiful, opaque finish. Its durability is also impressive – resisting stains, scuffs, and everyday wear and tear.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball’s unique water-based paints are richly pigmented, offering exceptional depth of color.

They also promise great coverage. Once, I tackled a dark hallway with Farrow & Ball’s “Elephant’s Breath,” and was delighted by how well it covered the previous, darker color.

However, in terms of durability, some users find Farrow & Ball paints less resistant to damage over time.

Price

Dulux

Dulux paints offer a budget-friendly alternative without compromising on quality. For those looking to paint large areas or multiple rooms, Dulux ensures a cost-effective solution.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball paints are undeniably on the higher end of the price scale. However, if you’re after a distinct color or an eco-friendly option, it may well be worth the investment.

Availability

Dulux

One of Dulux’s major advantages is its wide availability. You’ll find it in most paint stores, home improvement centers, and even online.

Farrow & Ball

While Farrow & Ball has fewer stockists compared to Dulux, it has a strong online presence.

You can order directly from their website or from various upscale home decor websites.

Color Options and Environmental Impact

Dulux

Dulux offers a broad spectrum of colors to choose from, perfect for any design scheme.

However, it’s worth noting that while Dulux is committed to sustainability, they are not as eco-focused as Farrow & Ball.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball shines when it comes to their unique, beautifully curated color palette.

Plus, their water-based paints are low VOC  (Volatile Organic Compounds), adhering to an eco-conscious philosophy.

This makes Farrow & Ball a particularly appealing choice for those looking to minimize their environmental impact.

Frequently Asked Questions Section (FAQs)

Q. Are Dulux and Farrow & Ball paints safe to use in children’s rooms?

  A: Both Dulux and Farrow & Ball have ranges of paint that are safe to use in children’s rooms.

Dulux’s Kid’s Range is designed with a tough, wipe-clean finish ideal for handling everyday wear and tear.

Farrow & Ball’s Modern Emulsion paint is durable, washable, and even resistant to mold, making it ideal for high-traffic areas, including children’s rooms.

Q. How long does it take for Dulux and Farrow & Ball paints to dry?

  A: Drying times can vary depending on the specific product and environmental conditions.

However, as a general rule, Dulux paints are touch dry in 1-2 hours and can be recoated after 2-4 hours.

Farrow & Ball paints are typically touch dry in 1-2 hours and can be recoated after 4 hours.

Q. Do Dulux and Farrow & Ball offer color-matching services?

  A: Yes, both brands offer color-matching services.

Dulux has a ‘Match My Colour’ feature which allows you to upload a photo, and it will suggest the closest Dulux paint color. 

Farrow & Ball offers a similar service, though they emphasize that due to their rich pigments, the colors may look different depending on the light conditions.

Q. Which brand offers a larger selection of finishes?

  A: Both Dulux and Farrow & Ball offer a variety of finishes, including matte, eggshell, silk, and gloss.

However, Dulux generally provides a broader range of specialist finishes, such as textured or metallic effects, making it a better choice for those looking for a unique finish.

Q. Are Dulux and Farrow & Ball paints easy to apply?

  A: Yes, both Dulux and Farrow & Ball paints are designed to be easy to apply.

They can be applied with a brush, roller, or sprayer.

However, it’s important to note that due to the rich pigmentation of Farrow & Ball paints, they might require more coats for full coverage.

Q. Can Dulux and Farrow & Ball paints be used on exterior surfaces?

  A: Yes, both Dulux and Farrow & Ball have specific ranges of paint designed for exterior use.

These paints are designed to be more durable and weather-resistant than interior paints, ensuring that they can withstand exposure to the elements.

Conclusion

In the end, your decision between Dulux and Farrow & Ball will depend on your specific needs, tastes, and budget.

Dulux, with its affordable pricing, excellent coverage, and extensive color range, is a reliable choice for large-scale projects or those on a budget.

It is a trusted brand that consistently delivers quality and is easily accessible in numerous locations.

Farrow & Ball, on the other hand, is your brand of choice if you value richly pigmented colors, a luxurious finish, and eco-friendly considerations.

While it comes with a higher price tag, the unique, sophisticated colors and environmentally-friendly approach can make it well worth the investment.

Ultimately, both brands offer high-quality paints that can transform your spaces beautifully.

Consider your project’s unique requirements and weigh them against the features of each brand.

Whether you choose Dulux or Farrow & Ball, the result is sure to be a room with renewed vibrancy and appeal.

Suggested Products:

Dulux

  1. Dulux Weathershield Exterior High Gloss Paint: This is a weather-resistant exterior paint that’s known for its high-gloss finish and durability. It’s designed to withstand extreme weather conditions and retain its color and finish for up to 10 years.
  2. Dulux Easycare Washable & Tough Matt Paint: This is an interior paint designed for high traffic areas, like kitchens and bathrooms. It’s stain-resistant and can be easily cleaned, making it a great option for families or pet owners.
  3. Dulux Magic White Matt Paint: This paint goes on pink and dries to a pure white, making it easier to see where you’ve painted. It’s a clever solution for ensuring even coverage, especially when painting large areas.

Farrow & Ball

  1. Farrow & Ball Estate Emulsion: Known for its chalky, very matte finish, this paint gives walls and ceilings a rich depth of color and an elegant, velvety look. It’s available in the full Farrow & Ball color range.
  2. Farrow & Ball Modern Emulsion: This paint is a more durable and slightly shinier alternative to the Estate Emulsion. It’s washable and mold resistant, making it suitable for bathrooms, kitchens, and high-traffic areas.
  3. Farrow & Ball Full Gloss: This high-shine paint is remarkably robust, making it perfect for use on both interior and exterior wood and metal. Despite its hard finish, it still has the deep, rich pigmentation that Farrow & Ball is known for.

About the author 

Bob Thomas

A fully certified interior decorator and house painter , Bob Thomas brings immense expertise and knowledge amassed from many years of hands-on experience with residential, commercial and specialty painting and decorating projects of all sizes and scopes.

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