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Glossy or Matte?

One of the first things you can do to make something look distressed and used, is to take the shine off a brand new paint job. Glossy paints look fabulous, but if the item was supposed to be used regularly, you'll want to either spray a satin (semi-gloss) or matte color paint to make the prop looked handled and worn from multiple use. Something that is used daily does not shine like it did the day it came brand-new out of the box.

There are a number of "Surface Preparation" chemicals in the paint market that will take the glossy shine off of a new paint job. Usually these chemicals can be found in your hardware or automotive store. They will be called "Deglosser", "Surface Prep" or something similar. Wiping this stuff a couple times over a new paint job will greatly reduce the shine of new paint. Test the chemical on a small inconspicuous patch before rubbing a rag all over the item, you want to test the reaction of the chemical to the surface before ruining a good paint job.

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