Basics, Benefits and Drawbacks of Gloss Cabinet Finishes

Recently in this space, we discussed everything you need to know about matte cabinet finishes. Matte finish, which refers to a smooth, shine-free surface, is a popular modern style for not only cabinets, but also several other design or aesthetic areas.

At AWA Kitchen Cabinets, we’re proud to offer a wide range of color options for our kitchen cabinets, from base cabinets to wall cabinets and many more, and we’ll also advise you on everything you need to know about finish. Opposite to matte finish is a style known as gloss finish, or high-gloss finish – here are some basics on gloss finish for your cabinets, plus some pros and cons to consider if you’re selecting it.

benefits drawbacks gloss cabinet finishes

Basics of Gloss Cabinet Finish

High gloss first became popular in the 1970s, where it was seen as a modern, chic style that added shine and sparkle to any design. It’s sometimes also called ultra-high gloss or 100 percent gloss, depending on the specific supplier and certain materials that are used.

In opposition to matte finish, which absorbs light and flattens it out, gloss cabinet doors come with a shiny, light-reflecting finish. This style is perfect for contemporary kitchen styles, those with flat cabinet doors and sleek, modern style points.

Benefits of Gloss Finish

There are several reasons why buyers often gravitate toward gloss finishes for their cabinets, including the following:

  • Space considerations: While matte finishes are known to somewhat compress areas, making them a limited option for smaller kitchens, gloss finishes are the opposite. Their light reflection actually helps spaces feel larger and more open than they actually are, meaning any size of kitchen goes well with gloss – they make smaller kitchens feel larger, and larger ones feel even more spacious.
  • Light absorption: Down similar lines, you don’t have to worry about darker light shades absorbing light out of your room with gloss finishes that reflect it right back out.
  • Simple cleaning: Gloss cabinets are very easy to clean, requiring just a non-scratch cloth and no expensive cleaning materials at all.

Drawbacks of Gloss Finish

There are a few potential downsides of gloss finishes, however:

  • Noticeable imperfections: Light reflection from gloss is great in several areas, but it may also increase the visibility of scratches, fingerprints, dirt or other smudges that reach the surface. This is fine if you have a few seconds to easily clean the area, but some people prefer matte because it hides these kinds of imperfections a bit more easily.
  • Dark colors: Down related lines, darker colors for gloss cabinets might not be advisable if you have small children or pets who might touch or otherwise damage the cabinets – scratches or finger marks are much more noticeable than on lighter colors.

For more on why gloss finish might be the perfect choice for your new cabinets, or to learn about any of our kitchen cabinets, speak to the staff at AWA Kitchen Cabinets today.