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2022 Review of Regal Select Flat Paint​

In 1957, when Regal Satin paint first landed on the painting shelves, it was a unique paint. It was touted as one of the easiest paints to apply ever. In the 1950s, most paint was alkyd-based, which means it spread like honey and dried slowly.

No question, for many years, Regal Satin and, more recently, Regal Aqua Velvet (eggshell) were the easiest to apply and most resilient paints on the market. However, how does Regal Flat compare with other premium paints in 2022?  

Regulations and consumer demand have changed what is expected from a gallon of paint.

We will compare:

  1. Coverage
  2. Washability
  3. Durability
  4. Workability
  5. Touch-up
  6. Price

Meet The Competition

What interior flat paint covers the best is why we tested this can of Duration
For a detailed review of Sherwin Williams Flat Paint, click here.
Marquee does not come in a flat finish. The closest sheen is a Matte finish.
PPG Manor Hall
For a detailed review of PPG Manor Hall Flat, click here.

                                                               Prejudice and Preconceived Beliefs

To be completely honest, I have always liked using Regal Paints, but I typically bought PPG and SW products instead.  I had good results with PPG and SW and knew their strengths and weaknesses. I only bought Benjamin Moore products when a customer insisted. In most cases, I really liked using Ben Moore products, but I didn’t like the price. BM products were always significantly more expensive than PPG and SW, and I couldn’t justify the price.

In addition, it was my experience that most paint manufacturers’ premium grade paints are all very good paints.

Therefore, there was no need to spend extra money on more expensive paints.

                  Regal Flat Coverage 

Regardless of whether I was using the product in the 1990s or in 2022, the coverage has never been an issue. 

We painted at the Smithsonian for a several years. With each new exhibit, there were always  dramatic color changes. The required paint was Regal Flat or Eggshell. Whether we changed from dark colors to light colors, or vis-a-versa, the paint covered in two coats.  

FYI – yes, some paints cover better than Regal. I tested Regal Flat against Behr Marquee Matte, and Duration Matte. Though it still needed a second coat, it will give you the best chance at one coat coverage. See examples below. 

However, if a paint covers in two coats, I give the coverage a 10. If I was to compare the coverage to Behr Marquee Matte, I would give the Marquee a 10 and Regal a 7.5.

 

Regal Flat coverage scores a 10.

Painting with Regal Flat at the Smithsonian
Selvin painting at the Smithsonian for Klappenberger & Son
Ben Moore Regal Flat Coverage compared to Marquee Matte
Behr Marquee has significantly better coverage than Regal Flat

Flat Regal Washability

As recently as 5 years ago, premium flat paints did not have the washability of an average, low sheen paint. So, paint manufacturers cheated a little and created matte finish paints. Matte finish paints have a very slight sheen. But a slight sheen was necessary to give this almost flat paint excellent washability.

Today, there are several premium flat paints that can handle tough stains such as catsup, mustard, wine, and coffee. A few years ago, this was not possible.  

Regal flat paint was up for the challenge. In addition to the paint being very washable, it did not affect the overall finish. In other words, there was no burnishing.

Regal Flat washability scores 10 out of 10.

Durability

Flat paints typically get damaged after cleaning, also known as burnishing.

Regal Flat paint showed no signs of burnishing where it was cleaned.

Durability of Regal Flat scores 10 out of 10.

Workability Means Better Productivity

In 1957, when Regal was applied on walls, it was branded as an easy paint to apply. Back in those days, most paint was alkyd and spread like cold butter on bread. Regal Satin was a cutting edge acrylic paint that pleased homeowners and painters across the country.  

Today, Regal Flat is still easy to work with. It spreads much easier than most flat paints, and the coverage is excellent.  

The easier paint is to apply, the faster and more productive you will be. Not only will Regal flat increase productivity, but a single gallon of paint covers about 50 -75 square feet more than most paints.  

Does Regal Flat Touch-Up?

Whether you have to go back and spackle or fix a scuff mark, Regal Flat touches up very well.  Most flat paints touch-up very well, in fact the cheaper quality paints are typically better.  Why?

Paints are designed for different purposes.  Having a paint that touches up does not cost much to make.  Having a paint with great washability usually means adding components that cost more and increase the sheen level.

Regal does cost more, but it is a true flat with superior washability.  

Is Regal Flat A True Flat?

Yes, Regal Flat is considered a true flat. Paints are rated by viewing them at an 85 degree angle and gaging their reflectivity. For example, a wool sweater would have no reflectivity, giving it a zero.  However, a mirror would have 100% reflectivity, giving it a grade of 100. Flat paint is supposed to be between 0-2.  Regal Flat has a reflectivity of 1-3.5 on a scale of 100. Why the variance? The more pigment that is added to paint to get those dark or vibrant colors, the more sheen there is.

What Is the Best Use For This Paint?

Prior to Aura, Regal was Ben Moore’s Premium grade paint.  It retails for about $60.00 a gallon. Due to the price alone, I would not recommend it for rental properties, restaurants, and other heavy traffic areas.

Instead, I only recommend this paint when you want a flat paint that you will only be cleaning from time to time. Do your walls have imperfections yet you want a washable paint?  Regal flat would be perfect. Do you have a tall foyer and the walls are not straight?  Again, Regal flat to the rescue. 

My only criticism of the paint is the coverage, and perhaps the cost could be $10.00 less.