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PPG vs. Sherwin-Williams: Which Paint Is Better?

Are you preparing to paint but can’t decide between PPG and Sherwin-Williams?

What are the major differences between them? Is Sherwin-Williams worth the higher price?

In this comparison of PPG vs. Sherwin-Williams, you’ll learn how they differ in paint offerings, coverage, durability, colors, VOCs, volume solids, and pricing.


Use the links below to navigate the comparison:


Paint Lines

PPG and Sherwin-Williams both offer a wide range of interior and exterior paint lines with various finishes and formulas.

In this section, you’ll learn about both brands’ most popular paint lines, starting with PPG.

PPG SpeedHide Interior is a latex-based paint formulated to meet the expectations of professional painters. It’s available in various colors and finishes, including ultra-flat, lo lustre, satin, low sheen, eggshell, flat, and semi-gloss. SpeedHide Interior is low-VOC and low-odor and is safe to apply while a room is occupied. It dries with a uniform finish and excellent coverage. SpeedHide Interior is also available in a zero-VOC formula.

PPG Speedhide paint
PPG Speedhide

PPG SpeedHide Exterior is a 100% acrylic latex paint suitable for new and repaint projects. It offers good hide and coverage and is resistant to mildew. You can apply SpeedHide exterior in temperatures as low as 35ºF.

PPG Break-Through is a durable water-borne acrylic interior/exterior paint that bonds to a wide range of surfaces, including fiberglass, ceramic tiles, laminate, and many plastics. This versatile paint dries quickly to provide optimal hardness. Break-Through also maintains enough flexibility to endure bends without cracking or peeling.

PPG Break-Through Paint
PPG Break-Through

PPG UltraLast is an interior paint and primer with PPG’s proprietary Clean Surface Technology. It’s washable and resistant to color loss, gloss changes, scuffs, and abrasions. It has a two-hour dry-to-recoat time.

PPG Permanizer is a 100% acrylic latex exterior paint. It offers a long-lasting finish with a durable film and advanced UV protection. It’s resistant to dirt, moisture, mildew, and tannins and is backed by a limited lifetime warranty against cracking, flaking, and peeling. You can apply Permanizer in temperatures as low as 35ºF.

Now let’s quickly review Sherwin-Williams’ top paint lines.

Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint Interior is a latex paint that applies easily and dries quickly. It features good coverage with a smooth, long-lasting finish in semi-gloss, satin, and velvet sheens. It’s available in various colors and additional air-purifying and sanitizing options.

Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint Interior
Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint Interior

Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint Exterior is an acrylic latex paint that resists fading and peeling while protecting the exterior of your home from the elements. SuperPaint Exterior is resistant to dirt and mildew. It’s available in over 100 colors, including a limited selection of darker colors and flat, low-lustre, satin, gloss, and high-gloss sheens. You can apply SuperPaint Exterior in temperatures as low as 35ºF.

Sherwin-Williams Duration Interior is a combination paint and primer that offers excellent coverage in fewer coats. The formula includes antimicrobial agents that prevent mold and mildew from developing on its surface. Duration also boasts stain-blocking technology that not only covers old stains but prevents new ones from forming. It’s available in flat, matte, and satin finishes.

Sherwin-Williams Duration
Sherwin-Williams Duration Interior

Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior includes acrylic copolymers and PermLast technology, providing a long-lasting finish. It’s self-priming and requires just one coat for a repaint — you’ll need two coats for new work. Duration Exterior is available in over 100 colors and flat, satin, gloss, and low-lustre finishes. It’s also resistant to mildew, cracking, peeling, and blistering. You can apply it in temperatures as low as 35ºF.

Sherwin-Williams Emerald Interior is one of Sherwin-Williams’ premium paint lines, offering exceptional coverage and stain resistance. It includes antimicrobial agents, making the formula mold- and mildew-resistant. Emerald Interior meets strict VOC standards and is available in all Sherwin-Williams colors and custom tints in flat, matt, satin, and semi-gloss sheens.

Sherwin-Williams Emerald Designer Edition Interior
Sherwin-Williams Emerald Designer Edition Interior

Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior is a premium paint and primer in one for the outside of your home. It has long-lasting durability and is resistant to blistering, peeling, fading, dirt, and mildew. Emerald Exterior meets strict VOC regulations. It’s available in many colors and flat, satin, and gloss sheens, providing a smooth uniform appearance.

Sherwin-Williams Cashmere is a paint and primer in one with an ultra-smooth formula for easy application. It dries with a rich finish in flat, pearl, and eggshell sheens and is available in the full range of Sherwin-Williams colors and tints. It is resistant to scrubbing, making it easy to clean and maintain. 

Sherwin-Williams Cashmere
Sherwin-Williams Cashmere

Sherwin-Williams Captivate is the brand’s least expensive interior acrylic latex paint. It’s easy to apply with excellent hide and dependable durability. It’s available in over 1,700 colors and flat, satin, and semi-gloss sheens. It also meets the most stringent VOC regulations.

Sherwin-Williams Captivate Interior
Sherwin-Williams Captivate Interior

Sherwin-Williams Latitude is a high-quality exterior paint recommended for aluminum, vinyl, and wood siding, clapboard, shakes, shingles, plywood, masonry, and metal. It’s available in over 100 colors and features ClimateFlex Technology to protect the finish, resisting warping or buckling. Latitude is also resistant to mildew and dirt. You can apply it in temperatures as low as 35ºF.

Both PPG and Sherwin-Williams offer various specialty paint formulas for projects such as painting the trim on your windows, outdoor steps, or patios. If you’re looking for a specific type of paint, visit the brands’ websites to learn more.

Volume Solids

If this is your first time researching and buying paints, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with the term volume solids.

Paints consist of liquid and solid components. The liquids are usually water or thinner; the solids include pigment, binding compounds, and additives.

Volume solids refers to the ratio of solids to liquids. It measures the paint components that remain when the liquid parts evaporate, and the paint dries.

Paints with higher volume solids are typically higher quality paints, providing better and longer-lasting coverage. Also, paints with high volume solids require fewer coats for a smooth, rich finish.

Sherwin-Williams and PPG offer formulas with higher volume solids. These lines are higher priced, although if you opt for a lower priced and lower volume solid line, you may need more paint to achieve the same level of coverage.

The table below outlines the volume solid percentages in various PPG and Sherwin-Williams paint lines. The percentages vary between lines and finish.

You’ll see that premium lines like Sherwin-Williams’ SuperPaint and Emerald have higher volume solids, which means they’re thicker and provide better coverage and durability. 

Interior Volume Solids

FlatMatteEggshellSatinSemi-Gloss
PPG SpeedHide32%N/A38%32%36%
PPG Break-ThroughN/AN/AN/A37%37%
PPG UltraLast42%N/A40%N/A38%
Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint44%N/AN/A41%37%
Sherwin-Williams Duration40%40%N/A38%N/A
Sherwin-Williams Emerald41%N/AN/A40%37%
Sherwin-Williams Cashmere40%N/AN/AN/AN/A
Sherwin-Williams Captivate34%N/AN/A40%36%

Exterior Volume Solids

FlatSatinSemi-GlossHigh-Gloss
PPG SpeedHide34%30%34%N/A
PPG Permanizer44%41%39%N/A
PPG Break-ThroughN/A37%37%N/A
Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint37%37%N/A37%
Sherwin-Williams Duration43%N/AN/AN/A
Sherwin-Williams Emerald42%39%N/AN/A
Sherwin-Williams Resilience39%N/AN/AN/A

VOCs

VOCs (short for volatile organic compounds) are chemicals in the solvents that turn into gas as the paint dries. They give paint strong-smelling fumes and are why you should always ventilate the room during and after painting.

VOCs may cause health issues. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, they affect the respiratory system and can cause headaches and nausea in some people. And they can linger in a painted room for as long as six months.

Many brands, including PPG and Sherwin-Williams, create paint formulas with zero or low VOCs. Paint with less than 50 grams of VOC per liter (g/L) is considered low VOC. Remember to always paint in a well-ventilated area, even with low-VOC paint.

Sherwin-Williams ProMar 200 Zero VOC
Sherwin-Williams ProMar 200 Zero VOC

The table below includes the VOC levels in PPG and Sherwin-Williams paints. While both brands offer low-VOC options, only PPG offers a zero-VOC formula in its SpeedHide line.

Interior Paint VOCs (g/l)Exterior Paint VOCs (g/l)
PPG SpeedHide Pro-Ev Zero0N/A
PPG SpeedHide< 50105
PPG Break-Through< 250< 250
PPG UltraLast< 50N/A
PPG PermanizerN/A< 50
Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint< 50< 50
Sherwin-Williams Duration< 50< 50
Sherwin-Williams Emerald< 50< 50
Sherwin-Williams Cashmere< 50N/A
Sherwin-Williams Captivate< 50N/A
Sherwin-Williams ResilienceN/A< 50
Sherwin-Williams ProMar 2000N/A

Paint and Primer

Another significant difference between PPG and Sherwin-Williams is all Sherwin-Williams formulas are paint and primer in one. In other words, you won’t have to apply a layer of primer unless you’re painting a light color over a dark color.

PPG paints do not obtain primer. In most cases, you’ll need to apply primer before painting.

Where It Is Sold

You can buy PPG paints at the Home Depot, PPG Paint stores, and some independent paint retailers. The PPG Paint store locator can help you find a retailer near you.

The Home Depot
PPG paint is sold at The Home Depot

Most Sherwin-Williams paint can only be purchased at a Sherwin-Williams store or online at Sherwin-Williams.com. However, Sherwin-Williams offer its HGTV Home collection exclusively through Lowe’s. You can find your nearest Sherwin-Williams store with its online store locator.

Sherwin-Williams Paint Review

The location of your nearest retailer should be factored into your decision. For example, if you underestimate how much paint you’ll need, it might not be convenient to make repeat trips to a store that’s far away.

Colors

Both PPG and Sherwin-Williams offer an exceptional variety of color choices. Both brands also provide visualization tools and resources to help you choose the best color without having to paint swatches on your walls.

PPG and Glidden Colors
PPG and Glidden Colors

PPG offers a virtual room painting tool that allows you to upload a picture of the room you want to paint and “try” different colors on the walls. PPG also has color consultants who can help you choose the best color and finish for your project.

Sherwin-Williams also offers several color visualization tools. Its ColorSnap Visualizer allows you to upload a photo of the room you want to paint and try various colors. The tool also has various stock photo images to try different shades.

Sherwin-Williams ColorSnap Visualizer
Sherwin-Williams ColorSnap Visualizer

Sherwin-Williams Snap-It tool helps you match paint colors to tones you’ve seen in real life. For example, if you want to paint your bedroom the color of a beach sunset, you can upload a picture, and the tool will match the color of the sky with a paint color.

The tool uses the ColorSnap Precision color matching technology to calibrate the color formulas of every product and sheen to match your ideal shade perfectly.

Remember, color matching between brands is tricky. It’s best to choose a brand and color and stick with it. 

Price

Overall, Sherwin-Williams is more expensive than PPG when you compare similar paint lines.

For example, Sherwin-Williams’ mid-range line is Cashmere, which costs around $70 per gallon. PPG’s mid-range line is Break-Through, which only costs $50 per gallon.

That said, the exact price depends on the paint line, finish, and where you purchase it.

The table below provides estimated pricing for various Sherwin-Williams and PPG paint lines.

You’ll notice that Sherwin-Williams’ most affordable interior line is Captivate, while Emerald is at the higher end.

PPG’s most affordable interior line is SpeedHide and UltraLast is at the higher end.

PaintPrice Per Gallon*View Details
Sherwin-Williams Emerald Interior $85Sherwin-Williams.com
Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint Interior$70Sherwin-Williams.com
Sherwin-Williams Cashmere Interior$70Sherwin-Williams.com
Sherwin-Williams Captivate Interior$45Sherwin-Williams.com
Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior$99Sherwin-Williams.com
Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior$93Sherwin-Williams.com
PPG Speedhide Interior$24 HomeDepot.com
PPG Break-Through Interior$50 HomeDepot.com
PPG UltraLast Interior$63 HomeDepot.com
PPG Permanizer Exterior$54 HomeDepot.com
PPG Speedhide Exterior$34 HomeDepot.com
*Prices are subject to change

What Others Say

To get a broader perspective on PPG and Sherwin-Williams, let’s see how they rank when tested by independent outlets.

The New York Times interviewed eight professional painters to determine the best interior paints and named Sherwin-Williams Cashmere the runner-up (only behind Benjamin Moore Regal Select). The pros quoted in the article praised its even coverage and easy application. PPG was not mentioned in the report.

The Spruce awarded Sherwin-Williams Cashmere the best overall interior paint. The reviewer called out its buttery-smooth application and perfect leveling. The only downside is the price; it sells for around $70 per gallon without any sales or discounts. Again, PPG was not featured in the article.

Good Housekeeping reviewed PPG Pure Performance, calling it a “great choice for your kitchen, bathroom, or damp basement” due to its mold and mildew resistance. But they claim it doesn’t stand up to scuffs, so it’s not the best paint for a kid’s room or high-traffic area.

GoodHousekeeping‘s positive review of Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint says it does a near-perfect job of covering light and dark surfaces. They highlighted its resistance to stains and fading and excellent finish.

Family Handyman named PPG Manor Hall the best interior wall paint for kitchens and bathrooms, thanks to its adhesion, coverage, and mold/mildew resistance. In that same article, they awarded Sherwin-Williams Harmony the best eco-friendly interior paint for walls. They highlighted that it’s VOC-free, UL GREENGUARD Gold Certified, and reduces odors.

Overall, both brands are highly regarded by homeowners and professionals, but Sherwin-Williams is featured more often in “best paint” lists.

Bottom Line: Should You Use PPG or Sherwin-Williams Paint?

Now that you know the key differences between PPG and Sherwin-Williams, it’s time to decide which paint to use.

Before I offer my recommendation, let’s quickly recap:

  • Sherwin-Williams and PPG both offer various interior and exterior paint lines with a wide range of colors and finishes.
  • Both brands provide online tools and resources to help you choose the best color.
  • Volume solids vary between lines and finishes. However, Sherwin-Williams SuperPaint has the highest volume solids percentage.
  • PPG and Sherwin-Williams both offer low-VOC paints. However, PPG also has zero-VOC options.
  • Sherwin-Williams paints include primer in the formula, but PPG’s formulas don’t.
  • PPG paints are available at Home Depot, PPG Paint Stores, and some independent retailers. You have to go to a company-owned store or order online to buy Sherwin-Williams.
  •  Sherwin-Williams paints are more expensive than PPG paints.
  •  Sherwin-Williams is the better-recognized brand. It’s often included in top 10 and best paint lists.

If you’re on the fence, go with Sherwin-Williams. It’s more expensive but is worth the extra cost for several reasons.

First, Sherwin-Williams paint and primer formulas with high volume solids provide superior coverage and durability.

Second, many formulas include extra features like antimicrobial agents and stain-blocking technology.

Third, you get better service and advice at Sherwin-Williams stores. The employees at these stores only sell one brand. And because of that, they offer expert product knowledge that you can’t get at Home Depot or the other stores selling PPG.

If you’re ready to get started, check out this guide, where I break down the differences between each Sherwin-Williams paint grade.

Andrew Palermo Founder of Prudent Reviews

Andrew Palermo - About the Author

Andrew is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Prudent Reviews. He began his career in marketing, managing campaigns for dozens of Fortune 500 brands. In 2018, Andrew founded Prudent Reviews and has since reviewed 600+ products. When he’s not testing the latest cookware, kitchen knives, and appliances, he’s spending time with his family, cooking, and doing house projects. Connect with Andrew via emailLinkedIn, or the Prudent Reviews YouTube channel.

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