DIY interior painting — paint like a pro

Yellow wall being painted with orange paint with a roller.

Painting interior rooms of your home might feel overwhelming, but it doesn't have to be! We've got tips from prep to finish so you can get the results you want.

First Up, What Do You Need to Paint an Interior Room of Your Home?

Before you do anything, you need to figure out how much paint you need to buy. Measure the walls you want to paint to calculate the total square footage. For solid walls, you'll need to multiply the width by the height of the wall to know the total square footage of the wall. Next, do the same thing for the ceiling, door, trim, baseboards, and molding, if they are all going to be the same color.

Paint cans with red, blue and teal paint on drop cloth with paint roller and paint tray.

The first thing to do is to purchase your supplies and figure out how much paint you need to buy.

How do you determine how much paint you need?

The amount of paint you are going to need changes depending on what is already on the walls. Typically, one gallon of paint can cover between 250-400 square feet. If the wall is a smooth and light color, you're in luck! Your gallon will take you a lot further. If you've got textured or dark walls to paint, you are going to go through that gallon a lot faster.

Our experts recommend that you always buy more paint than you think you'll need. (and even then, you will probably be heading back to the hardware store more, until the guy behind the paint counter knows your order by heart.)

Primer paint bucket with paint brush in it.

Sheen

What kind of paint sheen should you pick? Our service providers say that you will more than likely be using a flat gloss, eggshell sheen or satin paint sheen for your interior walls.

So what's the difference?

The flat sheen is the least glossy. You'll find this in your formal spaces, like dining rooms and offices.

Eggshell, as well as satin, have a lot more gloss and are used in the rooms you and your family spend much time in, like the kitchen.

If you've got kids, go with high gloss paints. Thy are a lot easier to clean, and they are resistant to stains, like the ones from tiny hands.

What about the baseboards and ceiling?

It's best to use a semigloss paint on the baseboards. Semigloss is perfect for baseboards that get beat up with scuff marks.

For the ceilings, you want to go with a flat paint, which is best to even everything out. You can get flat paints that ceilings. These flat paints prevent yellowing as the paint ages and reduce any splattering of color while you are painting.

Professional painter painting a ceiling in a white living room with a long paint roller extension.

Let's Talk Supplies!

If you want to paint a room on your own, you'll need the right tools.

Service provider edging a window with primer.

Prepping Rooms for Painting

You've got your paint, your supplies and a few days free to paint! Now it's time to get the room ready.

Get an expert opinion on painting.

Red paint can with paint brush on white drop cloth.

Let's Get Painting!

You've bought your paint and tools, and you've prepped the room. Now, it's FINALLY time to paint! We've got tips from our pros on how to paint a room.

Prime

Primer is an important step in painting and can help save money on how much paint you have to buy. Primer makes your walls smooth so that the paint goes on smoothly. If you patch any holes or if you are painting new walls you will need to use a primer.

Ceiling

Paint chips with array of colors, paint roller and interior design plans.

Corners and Edges

Paint the Walls with a Roller

Trim

With the right tools, the right paint and a bit of patience you can have your interior walls painted like a pro!

Photo courtesy of: Sherwin-Williams - Navy living room with orange chairs.

Photo courtesy of: Sherwin-Williams

If you'd rather skip all of the above, we've got service providers who can transform any room with a paint color you love, like the Sherwin-Williams paint color of the year, Navy SW.

Contact a painter today to get a quote.