Today I want to discuss L'essentiel Botanics Topcoats & Sealers, why I love them and what the differences are between them.
Topcoats & Sealers are the same types of product but you may hear of different terms used, in essence, it is a liquid product that your brush, roll, wipe or spray on, allow to dry and then often recoat 1-2 times to ensure an even, durable coverage. They protect your painted finish from everyday wear, spills and damage. A good topcoat that does this is worth its weight in gold!
L'essentiel has produced four topcoats all of which are waterbased and non-yellowing. Why are these two factors important? Waterbased makes the topcoat easy to apply, an oil-based topcoat is a sticky mess, it's hard to apply, takes longer to dry and can cause all sorts of issues including yellowing. L'essentiel's topcoats will not and cannot yellow, nobody wants to topcoat after all of the hard work painting a piece only to have it discolour and yellow. It's important to note that if you do have any form of yellowing or discolouration after applying your topcoat that this is bleed through and needs to be treated with a tannin/stain blocker - find L'essentiels All In One Base, Blocker & Primer here.
As the name suggests Flat Sealer is a MATT finish, it has no shine. It is best applied in light even coats and can be applied over any colour with ease, however, it's important to note that the mattifying agent in Flat Sealer can occasionally leave a white or milky coloured streak on dark colours. To avoide, this ALWAYS SHAKE THE BOTTLE WELL! I can't emphasis how important it is to shake bottles prior to use, this ensures the product is well mixed ultimately giving you a better finish.
I love Flat Sealer because it is a great all-rounder product, I often use Flat Sealer on a piece that I am going to wax, just one coat can make all the difference in durability. It's also a great option for sealing your piece if your not sure what direction your going in and want to protect your work so far, because of its matt finish you can easily paint over it and continue on.
Botanics Elephant Grey finished with Flat Sealer.
Eggshell topcoat is L'essentiels newest offering. It has replaced Crystal Clear Topcoat. Eggshell topcoat has a beautiful satin finish, it is easy to use, and significantly easier to use than Crystal Clear Topcoat. This topcoat is again a great all-rounder, Eggshell Topcoat is perfect for sealing your piece or you can use it for decoupage! I recommend 2-3 light, even coats are recommended to ensure you have a nice even coverage all over. You can apply eggshell topcoat by brush, roller, wiping on with a clean lint-free cloth or spraying.
These drawers have been painted with Botanics Liquid Carbon and sealed with Crystal Clear Topcoat. The sheen level is very similar to Eggshell Topcoat.
This drawer has been lined with a heavy weight wrapping paper, Eggshell topcoat was used as the "glue" to attach the paper to the drawer.
Shimmer topcoat is as the name suggests a beautiful shimmery high gloss topcoat that add significant shine and shimmer to your piece. As with all of L'essentiel's topcoats, Shimmer Topcoat is best applied in 2-3 light even coats, I recommend having a practice with this topcoat first as it can be a touch harder to apply due to the shimmer streaking when applied to thickly or unevenly. I like to decant a small amount and add a splash of water, mix well and then use a clean lint free cloth to lightly and evenly wipe the topcoat over your surface.
I love that Shimmer Topcoat can be easily coloured with a drop of paint for a pearlised finish, or thin it further with water for a shimmery glazed finish!
Ultimate Finish Mineral Paint - Reykjavic, charcoal glaze finished with shimmer topcoat.
Botanics Pavlova finished with Shimmer Topcoat.
All That Glitters Topcoat is another High Gloss finish similar to Shimmer Topcoat, however, All That Glitters has glittery shiny particles mixed into the topcoat taking that sparkle up a few more notches! Like all of L'essentiels topcoats All That Glitters is a durable topcoat, 1-2 coats even coats is recommended for a durable lasting finish. Like Shimmer topcoat you can add a drop of paint for a wash or glaze, or just to add some extra detail to your piece. All that glitters does dry clear, it just has a whole lot of sparkle!
This is the only topcoat I have yet to use for more then a sample. Hopefully, soon I will have a finished piece of furniture which will showcase the beautiful finish of All That Glitters.
I hope this blog answers some of your questions about L'essentiels beautiful range of Topcoats.
You can purchase all topcoats here