Best Exterior House Paints: Top 5 Outdoor Coatings, According To Experts

There’s nothing better than a fresh coat of paint to spiff up the exterior of your home and make it feel almost new again. Whether you plan to do the work or hire an experienced crew, purchasing the paint is a big investment. You want to purchase a high-quality product that won’t fade and will stand up to the natural elements. After all, no one wants to get a nasty HOA letter saying it’s time to repaint. That’s why StudyFinds has created a list of the best exterior paints.

When selecting a paint, there is more to consider than just color. The texture of the home and the climate you live in should also be a factor. Exterior paints are either Acrylic Latex (durable and easy to clean), Oil-Based (glossy finish), or Elastomeric (ideal for stucco and masonry). Four brands dominate the market: Benjamin Moore, Sherwin-Williams, Behr, and Valspar.

Some homeowners prefer environmentally friendly paints. Florida scientists recently created a new type of paint using materials like aluminum and aluminum oxide instead of pigments to generate colors. The result? A paint that’s better for the environment and keeps surfaces 25-30 degrees cooler than standard paint. Speaker of cooler temperatures, the spring and fall months are the best times to paint the outside of your home. Make sure humidity levels are low and it’s not raining.

Ready to give your home a facelift? We have compiled a list of the best exterior house paints to choose from. Scroll down to find out, and as always, if you used another paint not on the list, let us know in the comments below.

Painting (Photo by JOSHUA COLEMAN on Unsplash)

The List: Best Exterior House Paints, Per Experts


1. Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior Acrylic Latex

Sherwin-Williams is one of the most respected paint manufacturers in the industry, with an impressive 140-year history. Angi calls this paint the best exterior paint because “the mildew-resistance paint is propelled by innovative acrylic copolymers that assure longevity.” Another plus? “The paint has exceptional self-priming; one coat will often do fine. This efficient feature saves time and reduces the need for additional coats, curbing paint expenses. Plus, over 100 color options means Sherwin-Williams can cater to diverse aesthetic preferences.”

Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior Acrylic Latex (
Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior Acrylic Latex (

If you want to customize or freshen up the look of your vinyl siding, The Spruce rates this paint as a top choice. Why? “It’s designed to resist mildew and has a reputation for durability, with some users reporting up to eight to ten years of use.” It’s also great on wood, aluminum, and steel.

Bob Vila chose this paint as the “Best Overall Exterior Paint” because, “Duration is designed to resist cracking, blistering, and peeling.” He says, “DIYers need only apply a single coat to prepainted wood and two coats for covering bare wood.” Duration is available in more than 100 colors and one gallon covers up to 300 square feet.

2. Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior Acrylic Latex Paint

If you want to “elevate the siding on your home,” Better Homes and Gardens recommends Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior Acrylic Latex Paint. “Even in the face of harsh winter elements like rain, snow, and harsh sunlight, this exterior paint stands up to it all without fading or peeling. It can even resist dirt and mildew, thanks to its tough coating that forms when dry.”

Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior Acrylic Latex Paint
Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior Acrylic Latex Paint (

“This is an excellent choice for those looking for something water-based with an enduring finish,” states Angi. “This paint boasts a resilient, mildew-resistant coating, delivering a seamless, uniform appearance with a self-priming advantage.”

Colorado Painting calls this a “Best Bet” for wood siding. “It is a self-priming paint (only 1 coat necessary!) that produces a smooth, flat coat that can conceal any imperfections in wood siding.”

3. Benjamin Moore Aura Exterior Paint Flat

Prefer an oil-based paint? The Benjamin Moore Aura gets high marks from Angi. “This paint is great at keeping its shine and color after daily exposure to punishing sunlight. It also promises a smooth finish after the first coat, making the painting job faster while using less product. Plus, you can expect a finish that resists scratches and won’t feel sticky once dry. Even better, it is breathable, making it less likely to bubble, so it stays tough and protective for a long time.”

Benjamin Moore Aura Exterior Paint
Benjamin Moore Aura Exterior Paints (

If color is important, this paint comes in more than 3,500 hues. The Spruce writes, “Although it’s somewhat expensive, depending on where you purchase it, we find the rich color saturation and high-quality formula make it worth considering.”

“Benjamin Moore’s Color Lock technology that allows colors to appear rich even in bright sunlight and comes with superior fade resistance,” says DIY Painting Tips. “If you live in a place like Arizona, or even if you just don’t have any trees or tall buildings around and want the best exterior paint that will hold up to frequent sunshine, then the Aura Exterior Paint Flat is a great choice for you.”

4. Benjamin Moore Ben Premium Exterior Latex Paint

Don’t confuse cheaper with cheap. This paint is from Benjamin Moore’s more affordable line, but DIY Painting Tips says this is an “incredibly high quality and high performing paint” with “excellent adhesion, color retention, flow, and leveling.” It also has a 25-year warranty.

Benjamin Moore Ben Premium Exterior Latex Paint
Benjamin Moore Ben Soft Gloss Finish Exterior (

“The exterior paint provides protection for your home in any weather,” states Better Homes & Gardens. “It’s ready for rain in under two hours of application, which can be done even when the temperature drops near freezing. It’s easy to apply thanks to its good flow, which results in strong coverage and rich, lasting color thanks to Benjamin Moore Gennex Color Technology—according to Benjamin Moore, the formula is made without specific chemicals that have been proven to weaken paint.”

Colorado Painting calls it “a great choice for Budget-Conscious DIYers. It delivers dependable performance and a fantastic end product while having very forgiving application properties.”

5. Modern Masters Never-Fades Front Door Paint

We repaint our front door more often than the rest of the house so we would be remiss in not including a paint that will make your front door the envy of the neighborhood.

Modern Masters Never-Fades Front Door Paint
Modern Masters Never-Fades Front Door Paint in Satin Elegant

According to The Spruce, “This popular choice from Modern Masters comes in 16 different colors that are each based on the emotional color wheel and have names like Ambitious (red), Fortunate (green), and Tranquil (aqua). The satin finish is designed to last for many years.” It may be pricey, but luckily you won’t need much and the paint dries in only an hour.

“Color adds personality to your home, so it’s important to select a front door paint that shows off your style,” writes Better Homes & Gardens. “The Modern Masters Front Door Paint is the best exterior paint for this purpose. This enamel paint leaves a satin finish, and the water-based formula provides durability against outdoor elements.”

Reviewers on Houzz love this paint. One DIY painter says, “I love the color it took my old outdated front door to a more vibrant modern look. I plan to purchase more of this paint in the future for my other exterior doors.”

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This post may contain affiliate links. 

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About the Author

Amy Chodroff

Amy Chodroff is a recovering Morning Radio Show Host and award-winning broadcaster who recently retired from DFW’s Morning News on KLIF in Dallas. Fondly known as the “Chief Googler” by her friends, it was a seamless transition for StudyFinds to enlist her expertise for their “Best of the Best” franchise. Amy has an innate curiosity and a penchant for thorough research before any purchase and she’s constantly on the hunt for top-notch products. Outside of her digital explorations, Amy loves to explore the world with her husband and is the proud mother of two adult daughters. You can also find Amy on the pickleball court, perfecting her dink and drop shots.

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  1. As a professional painter who has done numerous exterior painting projects I can speak to the value of the Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior Acrylic Latex. Customers can be thrown off by the pricing of this paint, but the results are incredible. And when it comes to exterior paint, trust me you want to have the best quality that will last the longest. It’s not a cheap or easy project no matter if you’re hiring a contractor or tackling it yourselves.
    Thanks for sharing this list, it’s interesting to see how other professionals rank the popular exterior paints.

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