Primer vs Paint: Difference and Comparison

Painting anything magnifies the beauty of architecture and preserves its surface from damage. But before painting, it is recommended to apply primer first as it gives a long-lasting and sleek finish of paint to that particular structure.

For many people, the difference between the paint and primer is never understood as they look alike but are completely different products with different purposes.

Key Takeaways

  1. Primers prepare surfaces for paint application by ensuring proper adhesion, while painting provides color and protection to the surface.
  2. Primers can hide surface imperfections and prevent stains from bleeding, while paint alone is insufficient for these tasks.
  3. Applying primer before the paint can result in a more durable and even finish than using paint alone.

Primer v/s Paint

The difference between primer and paint is that primer seals the surface of any structure or wall and gives it a finish and smooth surface. On the other hand, paint provides colour and beauty to the structure and even acts as a protective shield against the elements. In simple words, a primer prepares the surface for the paint.

Primer vs Paint

Primer is a coating of a layer that fills up the gaps and cracks, making the object flawless and ready for being painted.


Science Quiz

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Which of the following is used in pencils?

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Soda water contains

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Which among the following is not a synthetic fiber?

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Name the fabric which is used in making bulletproof jackets?

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After a chemical reaction, the properties of the products are __________.

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Where does photosynthesis take place?

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A bond that occurs between nonmetals and nonmetals is called a/an _________.

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Quartz crystals normally used in quartz clocks etc. is chemically

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Priming is always necessary to prepare the walls of a building or the surface of a structure from wear and tear while making it resistant to damage for years. Using primer gives you a smooth finish to your work.

Paint is any liquid highly pigmented, liquefiable, or in the form of solid mastic which converts into a solid cover when applied to a surface in a liquid state.

The most common use of paint is to provide an object with colour, protection, or texture. Colours are available in almost every colour in various types, such as watercolour or artificial colour.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonPrimerPaint
DefinitionPaint is a liquid that gives colour to an object.Paints are highly pigmented, which gives them colour.
UsageIt is used to hide bumps or cracks on a wall or surface.It is used to give a finished look to the surface.
PurposeBefore painting, it prepares the surface for it.It gives beauty and protection to the structure.
PigmentA primer does not have any pigmentation.Paints are highly pigmented which gives them color.
CostPrimer is cost-efficient.Paints are expensive.

What is Primer?

Primer is a liquid applied to a surface to prepare it before the top coating. Primer is a substance created to ensure that the top layer of paint is stuck correctly, and better adhesion means the colour will last longer.

Primer seals the porous surfaces that can absorb the paint’s coatings. It also acts as a blocker for stains on walls.

Primer sometimes reduces the number of coatings of paint, covers the cracks or imperfections of the wall, provides a uniformly smooth surface for painting, and neutralizes the surface colour so that the colour of the paint shines through.

While painting is considered a self-primer, priming is a crucial step for acquiring a high-quality finish. Many times, one layer of primer does the word, but there are some times when two layers of primer coating are required.

Those circumstances are:

  • When you shift from a high shining surface to a low, shining finish look, such as glossy or flashy to semi-gloss.
  • Shifting the mood of the room from dark to light and bright.
  • If the cracks on the walls are repaired or patched.
  • When your walls have stains from toilet or bathroom leaks or fire marks in a kitchen.

What is Paint?

Paint is a mixture of components like a binder, VOC, pigment, and additives, which turns into a solid dry protective layer after being applied to any surface of anything.

It can also be defined as an item diffused in a binder and melted in a solvent. Paints are available in many colours with a high potential of hiding and protecting the inner surface against the atmospheric elements outside.

Other than these properties, paints give colour and beauty to architecture, making it lively. Colour is also used to cover the metallic elements to prevent them from reacting with oxygen and getting oxidized and rusted.

Paints are created by mixing several components in equal quantities, and the following are those components.

  • The vehicle: It is a kind of unsaturated oil that dries when exposed to air. The car can keep intact the pigments and other ingredients of paint. 
  • Base: The base acts as the body of the paint, which comprises very fine powder of materials like red and white lead, iron oxide, titanium oxide, etc. It prevents the film from cracking and moisture and protects it from UV rays.
  • Pigments: These are the colouring materials in the powder state that are added to the above ingredients to acquire the desired colours.
  • Solvents: Solvents are also known as Paint thinner, which diminishes the paint’s viscosity. These are added in paints to make the application easier and smoother.
  • Extenders: Extenders are fillers that increase the paint’s volume without messing with its essential properties.

Main Differences Between Primer and Paint

  1. A primer is a layer of liquid applied to a surface before painting. On the other hand, paint is a layer of coating that gives the surface a finished look.
  2. Primers act as a bonding agent for the paint to cohere better to the surfaces, while paints provide visual appeal by providing colour and shine.
  3. Primers are found in a single colour, whereas paints are available in many.
  4. Primer does not have pigments, whereas paints have pigments that give them colour.
  5. Primers are cheap or less efficient. On the other hand, paints are expensive compared to primers.
Difference Between Primer and Paint
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