Why are Farrow and Ball Paints So Expensive?

is farrow and ball paint worth it

When it comes to high-end paints and wallpapers, Farrow and Ball is a name that always seems to come up.

They’re well established in the UK and are starting to make serious waves in Europe and the US, too, with their range of products in paint supplies.

But is all the hype justified? Are their products really worth your hard-earned cash?

In this article, I will take an in-depth look at Farrow and Ball, some of the pros and cons of using their products, and the unique things they can do for your home.

By the end, you should have a good idea as to whether or not their products are worth the investment.

Farrow and Ball

Farrow and Ball company was founded over 70 years ago, in 1946, by John Farrow and Richard Ball.

They started selling paints made from leftovers at an oil refinery, which they managed to get hold of at a discount.

While their products may have been much cheaper back then, the quality was still high – something that has remained a constant throughout the years.

Currently, Farrow and Ball brand is owned by Hempel (a world-leading coatings manufacturer). They are known for their high-quality paints and wallpapers, which are available in a wide range of colors.

They also sell a small selection of furniture and home accessories too. But for this article, I will be focusing on their paints.

Farrow and Ball Paint Prices

When buying Farrow and Ball paint, you can expect to pay a price of around $100 to $110 per gallon in the US, which is two to three times more than other regular paint brands.

A 2.5L tin of Farrow and Ball emulsion paint in the UK and Europe will set you back around £46 to £70, which is significantly more than you would pay for a comparable product from a mainstream brand.

Why is Farrow and Ball paint so expensive?

Farrow and Ball’s paint prices are generally on the higher side of the spectrum because of the high-quality ingredients used in the manufacturing process of their paints that have fewer binding agents, less water, and more real pigments.

They also make their colors from natural earth components (like pigments and resins) that cannot be found anywhere else, meaning fewer synthetic colors are added.

Another reason why they are expensive is due to their ‘buildable’ paints, meaning you can apply multiple coats to create a richer, more opulent finish. The final result is a paint with excellent coverage, a beautiful finish, and durability. Of course, all of this comes at a price!

So, is it worth buying expensive paints like these? Let’s examine some pros and cons of using Farrow and Ball paints.

What’s So Good About Farrow and Ball Paint?

There are many pros to using Farrow and Ball paints, which is why they have become so popular in recent years.

Some of these include:

1- Excellent quality matters most

Farrow and Ball’s main selling point is the high quality of their products. This has been consistent throughout the years and is reflected in their customer satisfaction ratings.

Lesser quality paint will start to peel and flake within a year or two, but with Farrow and Ball, you can expect your paint job to last for ten years or more.

2- Exact color match when you buy online

One of the concerns people often have when buying paint online is that they won’t be able to get an exact color match.

This is because paint can look different in real life than on a computer screen.

However, Farrow and Ball have a very accurate color-matching system, so you can be confident that the paint you receive will be the same color as what you saw online.

3- Cover walls well with a great chalky finish

Farrow and Ball’s paints have excellent coverage, meaning that you will need fewer coats to achieve the desired matte and chalky finish.

This is particularly true of their darker colors, which can be pretty difficult to get even coverage with.

And as I mentioned before, one of the unique things about Farrow and Ball paints is that you can apply multiple coats to create a richer, more opulent finish.

4- They are expensive but eco-friendly

Farrow and Ball is a very environmentally conscious company, and they make their paints without synthetic colors or chemicals.

They also use responsibly sourced ingredients, and they have a ‘no waste’ policy when it comes to manufacturing their products.

5- They have an excellent range of colors

Farrow and Ball currently offer more than 130 different colors, which is perfect if you want something specific.

So if you’re looking for an impressive range of colors,  then Farrow and Ball is the way to go.

They also have a ‘Color of the Month, which is a great way to experiment with new shades.

6- You can buy small tester pots before committing to a whole tin

Last but not least, Farrow and Ball offer small tester pots of their paints so that you can try them out before committing to buying a whole tin.

This is useful if you’re unsure about a color or want to see how the paint will look in your home before making a purchase.

Keep in mind that not all brands offer this service for delivering paint samples, so it’s a perk Farrow and Ball offer.

drawbacks of farrow and ball paints

What are the Problems With Farrow and Ball Paints?

Although there are not many complaints about the paint’s colors or coverage, I faced certain issues when I used their Ready Mixed Emulsion Estate Paint a few months back.

You should know about these disadvantages before making your final buying decision.

1- Prone to chipping and flaking

Although their darker colors offer great coverage, the paints they offer are also more prone to chipping and flaking, mainly if you have not applied 2-3 coats over your walls.

Plus, you might have to touch up the emulsion paint more often if you choose one of their darker colors.

Most decorators and painters dislike F&B because they believe that the paint they offer is too thin, which is why it might take up to 3 coats to get a good and rich finish on the walls.

This can be time-consuming for many, as it adds to the project’s overall cost.

2- Limited color options compared to others

While Farrow and Ball’s color palette is extensive, it is still limited compared to other brands like Dulux, Sherwin-Williams, and Benjamin Moore.

Their color range for white paints is particularly minimal compared to other brands, which might be an issue for you if you’re looking for something specific that they don’t offer.

3- The samples are not free of cost

If you’re a fan of F&B paints, you might have noticed that they offer small tester pots.

While this is great for testing the paint before committing to a whole tin, the samples are not free of cost.

They will charge you a nominal price for each 100ml sample pot, which might add up if you’re testing multiple colors.

My Favorite Farrow and Ball Paint Colors – You Will Love Them

One of the things that F&B is most popular for is its range of beautiful matte colors.

Farrow and Ball blue and gray paint colors they offer are especially my top favorites.

You can use these classic colors to create stunning effects in any room of your home or even on the exterior walls of your home.

If you’re looking for some inspiration, here are my top favorite Farrow and Ball paint colors that you will love to try…

1- Lichen

Lichen by Farrow & Ball is one of my favorite colors. It’s a unique shade that best describes a mix of blue and green.

I have used this color in my home office, and it looks absolutely stunning. It has a calming and serene effect, perfect for a workspace.

2- Hague Blue  

If you love dark, bold, and deeper tones, this is a color you can try for coating your walls, trims, and ceilings.

This shade can create a perfect warm glow in your room, making it look very inviting.

3- Dead Salmon

Now, this Farrow & Ball shade has a fantastic name that perfectly describes its color – it’s a beautiful light pink color with a touch of salmon.

4- Shaded White

I believe that Shaded White by Farrow & Ball is a very saturated color, and it’s more like an off-white.

So, if you like to color with a stronger tone (and yet lighter in the shade), maybe for your walls in a small room, this can be a great option for you.

5- Oval Room Blue

This is a color that creates a perfect decorating balance. This one can be an excellent pick if you’re looking for classic blue paint.

I suggest trying this versatile Farrow & Ball color in different spaces, for example, the living room, bathroom, kitchen, or office, where you want a desirable fresh, clean, and inspiring feel.

6- Stiffkey Blue

This blue is gorgeously beautiful and comes with some exciting airy vibes. It also has some rich, saturated pigments that offer a shade of more calmness.

You can use this color with many pretty shades, like red, green, yellow, etc., to add more personality to it.

7- Strong White

I think this is one of the most beautiful and probably the most versatile colors by Farrow & Ball. You can use it in any room and for any purpose.

This shade of white particularly looks great with aged wood furniture and modern materials like stainless steel and glass.

Besides the above, a few other hues that can help create a dramatic mood in any room are:

  • Parma Grey No. 27
  • Hague Blue No. 30
  • Railings No. 31
  • Lulworth Blue No. 89
  • Studio Green 93 
  • Skylight No. 205
  • De Nimes No. 229
  • Pavilion Blue No. 252
  • St Giles Blue No. 280
  • Inchyra Blue No. 289

With so many options to choose from, it can be quite difficult to decide which color is the best for your home.

But if you consider the overall mood and feel of the room you want to create, it will be much easier to zero in on the perfect shade.

Also, take into account the materials like stone, wood, and metals used in the space and the amount of natural light that comes in.

All these factors will help you decide which color from the Farrow and Ball paints will work best for your home.

Related FAQs

Can you return unused Farrow and Ball paint?

If you’d like a refund on your unopened paint or core range wallpaper, you can return it to Farrow and Ball within 28 days of delivery.

However, based on their policies, opened can of paint or mixed paint cannot be returned to the store.

They will offer your order a full refund, excluding any delivery charges. You can check here to learn more about their return policy and to fill out the return form.

How good is Farrow and Ball’s wallpaper collection?

The Farrow and Ball wallpaper range are one of the gorgeous collections I have seen in a while.

They offer a wide variety of colors, patterns, and textures to choose from.

The best part is that they have something for everyone, and you can even try the samples before you buy them.

Plus, their wallpaper can also be used in bathrooms as they are all made with specialist bathroom-proof vinyl.

Whether you’re looking for something classic or more modern, you will find it in their collection.

What is the best alternative to Farrow and Ball brand?

If you’re looking for an alternative to F&B, I would say Sherwin-Williams is a great option.

They offer a wide range of colors, and their paints are known to be of high quality.

Another great alternative is Benjamin Moore, which also offers a wide selection of colors, and their paints are known to be durable and long-lasting.

The Bottom Line – Are farrow and Ball paints worth the extra money?

From what I have found from my personal experiences and reviews online – the prices of Farrow and Ball Paint are comparatively higher.

But they are worth the extra prices because they offer the exact shades without any alterations and hues that others cannot easily replicate.

Also, when you buy F&B paint products, you are paying for better quality ingredients and a product with low odor and low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) that will last longer and give you a better finish.

So, if you’re looking for good-quality paint that will last for years without needing touch-ups, Farrow and Ball are definitely worth the extra money.

But, if you’re on a tight budget or looking for readily available paint colors, you might want to look at other brands like Dulux, Behr, or Sherwin-Williams.

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