How to use Dulling Agent
Dulling Agent (No.30) is an additive that makes Leather Paint, Topcoat and Colour Restoration Cream less shiny. Most typically, it is used to flatten the level of shine (or sheen) of Leather Hero Colour (No.6).
Whilst Topcoat (No.7) is available in 4 levels of sheen; Matte, Satin, Gloss and High Gloss, Leather Paint and Colour Restoration Cream have a Satin finish. To make them less shiny, add Dulling Agent.
Best results are achieved when leather paint has the same level of shine as the topcoat used over it. That means, if you want a finish that is:
- High Gloss, Gloss or Satin, you will not need any Dulling Agent.
- Matte finish, you will need Dulling Agent.
- If you want to make adjustments to the level of shine of High Gloss, Gloss or Satin Topcoat, you can blend them or use Dulling Agent.
How much Dulling Agent you add will depend on your preferences, the original finish of your leather and the Topcoat you are using.
1) Add a dash of Dulling Agent.
2) Test the finish and assess for suitability
3) Continue adding Dulling Agent gradually and testing as you go until you reach the right level of shine for your job.
Where to test and what to use
Test in an inconspicuous area of your project; at the back, down low, underneath, between cushions etc. You could also use a swatch or scrap of your leather if you have one.
Apply with a small brush, off-cut of sponge or fingertip.
1) Start by making a 2cm test spot of your Topcoat and colourant/topcoat side-by-side. Apply with a small brush, off-cut of sponge or fingertip. Allow them to dry then apply a second coat with drying between. Compare the level of shine of each spot as well as the original finish. Take note how much flatter/duller your topcoat is compared to the colourant and the original finish.
2) If you want, you can mix a practice batch. Pour off a small amount of colourant/topcoat into a plastic cup. Add a dash of Dulling Agent and mix together. Make a 2-coat test spot. When dry, assess. Repeat until you have reached the level of shine you require. At this point, you can choose to complete one whole panel of your job, including all steps. This will give you a larger area to assess before mixing all of your colourant/topcoat. Under the carpenter's motto of 'Measure twice, cut once', it's best to be sure before altering all of your colourant/topcoat.
Now, aiming for the same ratio of Dulling Agent to colourant/topcoat as your pre-test, add a dash at a time to your colourant/topcoat testing as you go. Stop adding Dulling Agent when you are satisfied with the level of shine.
Duller finishes can be more difficult to work with by hand. If you are using a spray gun, applying an even finish should be achievable. If you are applying by hand, streaking can occur. It happens particularly when there is a misalignment between the level of shine of the substrate and the Topcoat, when the leather grain is very fine or just because matte finishes are better sprayed. Note: Matte finishes are not common in the furniture market; most are satin finish.
OK, so this happened. Now, how to fix it. Try this remedy:
- If you've added too much Dulling Agent to your colourant, add some High Gloss Topcoat, say 10-30%, to elevate the level of shine.
- If you've added too much Dulling Agent to your Topcoat, mix in as much High Gloss Topcoat as needed to reach an even finish.
Dulling Agent (No.30)
This additive makes leather colourants and topcoat less shiny.
- Add to leather paint, Colour (No.6),to flatten the sheen from satin to matte
- Add to Topcoat (No.7) to reduce the sheen as needed
- Add to Colour Restoration Cream (No.32) to reduce the sheen from satin to matte
- Add to Black Jacket Reviver (No.18) to reduce the sheen from satin to matte
You have control
Dulling Agent (No.30) gives you control over the level of shine and allows you to tailor the finish to the needs of your job. Simply add a dash at a time and test after each adjustment. Apply a test spot in an inconspicuous area, dry it off and assess the result. As a guide, desired results are typically achieved with the addition of 5%-20% Dulling Agent.
Bring your coatings into alignment
Best results are achieved when your colourant has the same level of shine as your original finish and/or your chosen topcoat.
Leather Hero Leather Paint has a satin finish. Your job requires a matte finish and you have purchased matte topcoat. You will add an amount of Dulling Agent (No.30) to your Leather Paint to produce a lower sheen paint that is in alignment with the level of shine in the matte topcoat.
You have purchased gloss topcoat and have found that is has more shine than your project requires. You will add an amount of Dulling Agent (No.30) to reach the desired level of shine for your project.
Want to know more about using this product? Read through the info on this page then head to the How To library to learn more about using Dulling Agent (No.30).
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