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Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams: Finding the Right Paint for Every Type of DIYer

Looking to paint your home? We put Valspar and Sherwin-Williams paints head to head.
Valspar vs Sherwin Williams

Photo: istockphoto.com

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Choosing a paint is often the most daunting part of starting a painting project. With so many brands and colors to consider, it can feel completely overwhelming. Two popular paint brands on the top of many renovators’ minds are Valspar and Sherwin-Williams, and shoppers may wonder, which is better between the two? Of course, the “perfect” paint depends on a whole range of factors, including personal preference, paint finish, and the area being painted. To help choose between the two, we’ve put them head-to-head—Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams paints—so DIYers, painters, and designers alike can make their best choice.

How We Compared Valspar and Sherwin-Williams

We’ve conducted plenty of research on interior and exterior paint (as well as some hands-on testing) for several guides, including our best interior, exterior, and one-coat paint guides. To capture a wider perspective, we also looked at other third-party guides that tested and reviewed paint. Using these insights, we ranked Sherwin-Williams and Valspar based on their prominence on these lists.

We also considered other third-party research, including surveys from both consumer research companies and painting or renovation companies. We researched articles on these paint brands, paying attention to quotes from product experts, and interviewed a painting expert, too. Testing only captures short-term performance, while painting pros have longer-term experience with these paints. This gave us a fuller picture of how a range of products from each brand performs so we could compare Sherwin-Williams and Valspar paint.

Valspar

Valspar vs Sherwin Williams
Photo: lowes.com

Price Range: $ to $$

Our Top Picks: Valspar Ultra White Satin Tintable Interior Paint ($37.98 at Lowe’s) and Valspar Signature Semi-Gloss Tintable Interior Paint ($48.98 at Lowe’s).

Valspar is widely known for being a reasonably priced and high-quality paint brand. The brand was established in 1806 and is actually under the ownership of the Sherwin-Williams Company as of 2017. Valspar creates a wide range of paint colors at a budget-friendly price for highly rated products.

Reviewers note that Valspar paints tend to be thinner and might need more coats than more expensive paints like those from Sherwin-Williams. However, many still have a gorgeous finish that is worthwhile for some shoppers for its lower price tag. Valspar paints are easy for most shoppers to find; they’re sold at Lowe’s and several independent retailers nationwide. Valspar’s lower price point and wider availability makes its products an accessible choice for many shoppers.

Pros

  • Good quality, highly rated products with plenty of happy customers
  • Wide color range that will suit almost any home
  • Valspar paints tend to be more affordable than Sherwin-Williams paints
  • Easy for most shoppers to find; available at Lowe’s and independent retailers

Cons

  • Lower-end product compared to Sherwin-Williams’ paint, which may mean it needs more coats and has lower durability over time

Shop Valspar paints at Lowe’s, Ace Hardware, or Valspar.

Sherwin-Williams

Valspar vs Sherwin Williams
Photo: sherwin-williams.com

Price Range: $$ to $$$

Our Top Picks: Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint Interior Acrylic Latex ($75.49 at Sherwin-Williams) and Sherwin-Williams Emerald Designer Interior Latex ($109.49 at Sherwin-Williams).

Sherwin-Williams is regarded by many as one of the top paint brands. The brand was established over 150 years ago in 1866 and has since pioneered many new products. The Sherwin-Williams Company also owns several trusted household brands, including Valspar, Krylon, and Thompson’s WaterSeal.

Sherwin-Williams offers a wide array of paint shades and is known for being a premium product compared to more budget-friendly brands like Valspar. Sherwin-Williams paints are thick and pigmented, but they also come at a premium price tag. Though its products tend to be pricier, the brand has earned a great reputation for customer satisfaction; a J.D. Power 2023 U.S. Paint Satisfaction Study ranked Sherwin-Williams number one in terms of customer satisfaction when it came to interior paints. For the most part, Sherwin-Williams paints are only sold through the brand’s company-operated stores, apart from the HGTV Home by Sherwin-Williams line, which is available at Lowe’s.

Pros

  • A premium product, chosen by both professionals and homeowners
  • Paint is easy to apply and may require less coats than Valspar paints
  • Painted walls are often easy to clean and hold up well over time
  • Ranks highly in customer satisfaction

Cons

  • Comes at a premium price tag; more expensive than Valspar paints
  • Most products are only available at Sherwin-Williams stores, though they do have a line of HGTV Home paints at Lowe’s

Shop Sherwin-Williams paints at Lowe’s or Sherwin-Williams.

Sherwin-Willliams scores higher than Valspar in surveys regarding customer satisfaction and trust

Sherwin-Williams consistently scores higher than Valspar in a few key surveys. In the J.D. Power 2023 U.S. Paint Satisfaction Study, Sherwin-Williams actually came first in terms of customer satisfaction, beating out other brands like Behr, Benjamin Moore, and Valspar. These rankings change year by year, but Sherwin-Williams tends to score higher than Valspar. The same applies to the America’s Most Trusted study (2023) run by Lifestory Research. While Sherwin-Williams and Valspar both make it onto the list of most trusted paint companies, Sherwin-Williams comes out on top most years.

We found the same ranking in our testing and research. In many of our best paint guides, Sherwin-Wiliams products have more features than Valspar products. The same applies to other trusted third-party reviews.

Sherwin-Williams paints tend to be more expensive than Valspar paints

When it comes to Valspar vs. Sherwin-Williams’ price per gallon, Sherwin-Williams paints are often more expensive. For those on a budget or painting a large area, this price can make a big difference. This higher price often reflects a better quality product, though there is a caveat: It can depend on the product line. For example, one of Valspar paint’s premium products may be pricier (and may perform better) than one of Sherwin-Williams’ budget products.

We spoke to Andre Kazimierski, CEO of nationwide painting service company Improovy, about the two brands. He agrees that the higher price tag comes with a better quality product, noting that he finds Sherwin-Williams paints to “remain chip- and scratch-free for much longer than Valspar paint, especially for the higher-end lines.” He adds, “Sherwin-Williams also offers better coverage, so you’ll need fewer coats and use far less paint. In many cases, this helps even out the fact that Sherwin-Williams paints are generally more expensive than Valspar.”

Valspar paints can be more accessible to some shoppers than Sherwin-Williams paints

Valspar paints are sold at Lowe’s stores and a bunch of other independent retailers across the country. Sherwin-Williams paints are sold in Sherwin-Williams stores, and the brand’s HGTV Home line is sold at Lowe’s. While there are plenty of Sherwin-Williams stores nationwide, they’re more concentrated in populated areas. This means some shoppers may need to drive quite a ways to get to a Sherwin-Williams store. However, there is a benefit of having brand-specific stores: Employees have better brand knowledge and are trained to help customers find their perfect Sherwin-Williams paint.

Valspar paints are available at Lowe’s and some other retailers, so it may be easier for some shoppers to access Valspar products. Lowe’s ships nationwide, so in some cases, it’s possible to have the brand’s paint shipped right to home.

Our Verdict

When comparing Valspar paint vs. Sherwin-Williams, Sherwin-Williams is the better paint brand. Sherwin-Williams’ products tend to be more expensive than Valspar paints but have a better formula that is often thicker, requires less coats, and is more durable in the long run.