This is a question we are often asked when house painting. Well, years ago it was always oil paint for woodwork, as that was all there was, it was tough and washable very smelly and generally done in a gloss finish. But in the past few years house paints and house painters are moving towards water based finishes. As I stated in my blog on exterior paints for woodwork, the technology is improving all the time in the manufacturing of water based paints. They are becoming tougher and more hard wearing as the years go on. As painter decorators who hand paint kitchens, as well as painting interior woodwork in all sorts of homes, we would normally use water based paints. They are generally more expensive, but they are also more eco friendly, they have a very low odour and much less, if no noxious substances in them. Which I think you will agree is much healthier for both a painter decorator who is using them, and the people who are living in the house. Now it is possible to hand paint a kitchen or woodwork in a hall stairs and landing ( many doors) and stay living in the house and not be affected by fumes. Water based paints come in four finishes, matt, egg shell, satin, and gloss. As they are water based, all brushes and rollers will be cleaned in water, which is much more friendly on the environment. The best water based paints in Ireland as far as we are concerned; are Colourtrend and Farrow and Ball.