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Give Your Bathroom a New Look with Family Handyman Approved Aura Bath & Spa Paint

The Family Handyman logo The Family Handyman 4/19/2022 Ethan O'Donnell

A new coat of paint is an easy and affordable way to update a bathroom. And because most bathrooms aren't that big, the time commitment and materials needed are minuscule.

Over the past few years, I noticed all the big paint manufactures came out with kitchen and bath or bathroom specific paints. The Benjamin Moore Aura Bath & Spa Paint intrigued me the most because of its low luster finish, a traditional no-no in a bathroom setting.  So I decided to give it a try.

What is Benjamin Moore Aura Bath & Spa Paint

Benjamin Moore Aura Bath & Spa is a low luster matte finish paint, specially formulated to repel moisture, stand up to humidity and resist mold and mildew. Aura Bath and Spa comes in thousands of colors and features Benjamin Moore’s own Color-Lock technology for richer and truer colors.

Aura Bath & Spa is more durable than traditional matte finish paints, which are susceptible to scuffs and stains. It also contains no volatile organic compounds, AKA zero VOC. That makes it ideal if you have children, or you're concerned about potentially harmful off-gassing that takes place as some paints dry.

How We Put It To The Test

Our upstairs bathroom, its dazzle diminished a decade after a renovation, badly needed a refresh. So on an early spring morning I headed down to my local hardware store, picked up a gallon of Aura Bath & Spa paint and got to work.

Performance Review

I've been painting a lot lately, so I immediately noticed this paint was different. The Aura Bath & Spa paint has a denser, almost soupy, consistency and a distinctive smell — not toxic or bad, just different. So I checked the can to be sure it was zero-VOC as advertised. Finding the Benjamin Moore Green Promise logo plastered right on the front of the label, I knew it had to be.

After laying drop cloths and completing all appropriate masking and wall repair, I got to painting. Cutting-in was a breeze in this small, World War II era bathroom, though it took some time to make my way around the shower, window, subway tile and light fixtures.

While cutting-in I appreciated the thicker consistency of the Aura Bath & Spa. It brushed out nice and evenly, without any drips. Once I finished cutting in, I used a 1/2-in. nap roller for the first coat because of my uneven plaster walls. Again, when rolling the walls and ceiling, I valued the thicker viscosity of the paint. It went on silky-smooth and with no globs or drips.


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Though the Aura Bath & Spa paint is paint-and-primer in one, to me there's no substitute for the richness and consistency two coats gives a project. After wrapping up my first coat, which took about 40 minutes, I assumed I could go directly back to the ceiling and start my second coat, but I was wrong — it hadn’t dried yet. I wrapped up my brushes and roller and waited another 10 minutes, then 20. Nope, still damp to the touch.

At this point, I did what any sane person would do on their weekend. I ran a few errands and came back an hour later to find dry walls.

The second coat applied beautifully like the first. After clean-up and ample drying time, the bathroom walls looked fresh and bright. The matte finish did an exceptional job of hiding the surface imperfections, an attribute I would endorse for anyone with plaster walls in their bathrooms.

After we moved our soaps, shampoos, lotions and toothbrushes back in and replaced the switch and outlet covers, I was really happy with the Aura Bath & Spa paint. Benjamin Moore has long made high-quality, great-looking paints, and this is no different. But with quality comes cost, and the Aura Bath & Spa paint is not cheap — almost $90 a gallon, a possible dealbreaker for large bathrooms.

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Why You Should Buy This

In the end, this project has made me a loyal advocate for Benjamin Moore's Aura Bath & Spa paint.  Though more costly and time consuming due to its lengthy dry time, I found its durability, distinct bathroom formulation and alluring finished appearance far outweighed any negative characteristics. Try it for yourself and I'll bet you'll feel the same way.

Pros

  • Durable;
  • Minimized surface defects;
  • Uncommon matte finish;
  • Moisture and mildew resistant;
  • Zero VOC.

Cons

  • Lengthy dry time;
  • Expensive.
 

Where to Buy Aura Bath & Spa Paint

Benjamin Moore Aura Bath & Spa paint is available at neighborhood Ace Hardware locations. Or order and pick up directly from benjaminmoore.com

Buy Now!

     
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