Colour matching is an important part of completing your DIY project. Whether you’re starting a new project and you want to use a specific colour you have seen, or you’re needing to match to an existing colour for a touch up, it is so important to ensure your colours are matched perfectly. It can sometimes be a time consuming and frustrating process … and imagine your disappointment if the colour doesn’t end up being an exact match. But not to worry – we have all the tricks and tools to make colour matching a breeze for your next project!
The 6 Best Tools for Colour Matching Paint
1. Brush Out Boards
Brush Out Boards are such a handy little resource when it comes to completing your DIY project. We don’t need to tell you that Brush Out Boards are one of the best thing to use when selecting your paint colour* – they are easy to test in the actual room against a variety of lighting, against your furniture, flooring, etc – but they are also make colour matching super easy in the future. The sticker on the back of the board easily identifies the brand and colour of the paint you used, so when it comes time to touch up your paint project, just refer to that Brush Out Board!
* But in case we do need to tell just how great Brush Out Boards really are, watch this short video!
Best used when: you need to touch up a project that you started.
2. Colour Swatches
Colour swatches are also a great way to match colour to an existing painted surface, a coloured fabric or a picture. Head into to your local Inspirations Paint store to pick up your free Dulux and Berger colour swatches, and the process is super easy – hold your colour swatch against the surface you are trying to match to, and change out the colours until you find the best match. There are a few obstacles with matching to colour swatches though – not all colours available from Dulux and Berger are available in colour swatches, and the natural light can influence how a colour appears (it may see brighter in the morning, or deeper in the evening).
You can also use your smart phone and compare against the colours used in our Colour Wall, however this method would be recommended as a last resort. The difficulty in trying to match colours solely off a device (be it a smart phone, tablet, computer monitor) is that there are too many variables to get an accurate match. The colour you are seeing on the screen can be affected by brightness, colour saturation and contrast, and can and up being several shades different to the colour you are trying to achieve – so if you are matching off a device, make sure you have a chat to the experts before you decide on your colour!
Best used when: you are colour matching for a new project and you are slightly flexible with your final colour selection.
A spectrophotometer is a really cool device that shines a light onto a surface and electronically measures the colour of the surface. The spectrophotometer is able to calculate the various pigments in a colour to produce an exact colour match, and as it is all digital it removes the chance of human error, providing technically the best match to a colour. The spectrophotometer works when you are able to bring in a sample of the painted surface roughly the size of a 10 cent piece or bigger which is pretty smooth in texture and free of marks. While this awesome technology removes the opportunity for human error, the irregular texture of a sample (i.e. brick) may cause shadowing on a sample, or a mark can show the colour reading as darker than what it actually is, so using a smooth, clean sample is super important. Bringing in a sample of colour from a pre-painted wall, however, may be difficult to source without damaging your wall.
Best used when: you are after an exact colour match for a project and you can bring in a sample of the colour you are trying to match
4. Have a chat with our in store experts
The team at your local Inspirations Paint store is guaranteed to be equipped with a wealth of knowledge for all things project related. Most stores have access to incredible Colour Consultants who eat, sleep and breathe everything colour related … and they can often colour match to the eye. The same goes for our experienced staff members who were colour matching to the eye before spectrophotometers even existed! Their super ability to match paint to the eye, paired with their colour advice and expert application tips mean you can be rest assured that your project is in good hands!
Best used when: you want to match to a colour, but also want to get some good human advice too
5. Dulux’s Snapshot
This awesome tool is a game changer for colour matching. Available to purchase from your local Inspirations Paint store, this hand held device is so easy to colour match to just about anything! After you’ve purchased your Snapshot device, you’ll need to download the partner app and calibrate your device. After that, it’s as simple as holding your Snapshot device against the colour you are trying to match, push the button and when the three lights illuminate you’ve got your colour! The Dulux colour that is closest to the colour you are trying to match will appear on your smart device, as well as two similar colours for you to choose!
Best used when: you need to colour match but can’t bring a sample in store, or are looking for colour inspiration for your next project*!
* If you are using Dulux’s Snapshot device for colour inspiration for your next project, don’t forget that our exclusive Brush Out Boards are a great way to test your chosen colours!
6. Your colours recorded with Paint Club
Do you know the colour you painted your bedroom? We do!
Make colour matching and touch ups for your future projects a breeze by joining Paint Club!
Paint Club is our loyalty program (and happens to be Australia’s largest paint club!) which is completely FREE to join! Aside from the discounts that you receive on your purchases, the biggest benefit of being a Paint Club member is that your purchase history is recorded against your account. This means that next time you need to touch up one of your projects we can tell you the colours you used, the quantity you purchased, the products you used, the room it was done in, the day it was purchased – all without any fuss! And all these records are kept for as long as you are a Paint Club member, and can be accessed from any of our Inspirations Paint stores nationwide! So after going through the above colour matching exercises and you’ve visited your nearest Inspirations Paint store to make your purchase, we take care of all the recording to save you all that effort next time! Did we mention its FREE?!
Best used when: Always! Paint Club records all your purchases so colour matching is a breeze for all future touch ups.
Colour matching can be difficult, and absolutely heartbreaking when the colour match isn’t exact … so as with all DIY projects we recommend heading into your nearest Inspirations Store to have a chat to our expert teams before tackling your next project!