DD--Self-Priming Paint

Self-Priming Paint

Every product has its purpose and, for sure, there is no single product that does it all. So what is the attraction of self-priming paint?

The advertised benefit of self-priming paint is the opportunity for a homeowner to save time and cost, while still achieving a great result. Sometimes the reality can be much different.

The reason is simple. Paint and primers serve different purposes. Specifically, primers:

  • seal in underlying liquids to ensure they don’t bleed through the fresh coat of paint;
  • form a surface for paint to adhere to; and
  • provide a uniform surface to improve the paint’s appearance
  • can bond to difficult-to-adhere-to surfaces

On the other hand, paint should:

  • be a specific color;
  • provide a long lasting, durable finish; and
  • create a desired surface texture and sheen

Combining the two can diminish the performance of each attribute, or provide unnecessary functionality where it is not needed. It is like designing underwear to protect you from a thunderstorm.

To complicate matters, the only way to manufacture a product that could offer what is needed in a self-priming paint is to use more expensive ingredients. Since primers are generally cheaper than paint, and an equivalent finish will still require the same number of coats, whether they are paint, primer, or self-priming paint, the net result is a more expensive coating.

Self-priming paint is, in the end, primarily an excellent marketing strategy. It can be beneficial when repainting a finished surface that does not require any maintenance (patching, peeling, and repair) but, generally speaking, it provides only the illusion of low cost and high performance. Professional painters will recommend the use of a primer (when necessary) as well as paint, and high quality products will always give better results, require less time to apply and last longer.


If you care about the planet, ECOS Paints are the best choice for all your design and renovation needs. Check out all of our paints, coatings, and products - Learn more here.*

*ECOS’ products have Declare Labels and are red list free by the International Living Future Institute. For additional details, see here: https://living-future.org/declare

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