7 July 2016

Choose your hardwood floor sheen

Published by: Priscilla Bergeron | Photographies by: Mélanie Lafond

“Design is intelligence made visible”

When you buy a hardwood floor, you deserve to love every little detail. Choosing your floor’s sheen—also referred to as luster or gloss level—is one such detail. This decision can make a big difference in the overall look of your room.

But first, let’s determine exactly what the sheen of your hardwood floor is.

lauzon flooring hardwood blog luster gloss sheen samples

What is sheen?

Sheen, luster, or gloss level, is an optical term that describes a surface’s ability to reflect light. The higher the gloss level, the more directly it reflects light, and the lower the gloss level, the more the surface absorbs and diffuses the light. For example, there is no such thing as a 100% gloss floor, but if there were, it would be as reflective as a mirror!

Gloss level is normally measured at a 60-degree angle with a gloss meter, which is the equivalent to looking at the surface while standing up. The gloss level calculation is then derived by the amount of reflection from the finish. The gloss meter compares this value with the black-glass standard, which has a defined refractive index of 100 “gloss units.” While it’s common industry practice to describe the gloss level as a percentage of this given standard (i.e., 45% gloss), at Lauzon we use a sheen term (i.e., Semi-Gloss for 45%) to match each gloss level of our hardwood floors.

The glossier you go, the more light reflects off the floors. This in turn, shows more dirt and dust as well as imperfections in the hardwood floor.

lauzon flooring hardwood blog luster gloss sheen meter

Good to know!

It’s important to realize that different hardwood species—and textures—will produce different gloss levels. Natural wood color or patina, as well as differences caused by open- vs. closed-grain woods, and texture will produce subtle variances in the gloss level.

Picking a gloss level is more of an aesthetic choice and does not impact the durability of the finish. However, over time foot traffic will dull most hardwood floor finishes and create visible traffic patterns. With its superior anti-wear properties, our Titanium finish will maintain the luster of your hardwood floor over time, so you won’t see foot traffic on any of our sheen levels.

lauzon flooring hardwood blog luster gloss sheen BYK abraser test

Sheens offered at Lauzon

At Lauzon we offer a variety of sheen options, so you’ll be sure to find the best fit for you.

High Gloss ±50%:

Gloss levels from 50% to 100% have very pronounced sheen and create a sleek, modern result. A high gloss tends to be more formal. The higher the gloss, the more visible any marks, scuffs, or scratches will be.

At Lauzon we offer 2 high-gloss options*:

  • Semi-Gloss (45%): Available on our superior Titanium Finish in our Designer and Ambiance Collection.
  • Velvet (35%): Available on our superior Titanium Finish in our Designer and Ambiance Collection, as well as on our Pure Genius air-purifying smart floor.

Low Gloss ±15%:

Low gloss is a very popular look today that gives the appearance of European oil-rubbed finishes. Maintaining an actual oil-rubbed finish takes a lot of time and effort. But with Lauzon’s low-gloss, high-style finish option, you can achieve the same look with minimal maintenance! Plus, because these options tend to hide marks, scuffs, and scratches, they usually make excellent options for high-traffic areas and homes with kids and pets.

At Lauzon we offer 3 low-gloss options*:

  • Matte (20%): Available on our Aluminum Oxide finish in our Essential Collection.
  • Pearl (20%): Available on our superior Titanium Finish in our Designer and Ambiance Collection, as well as on our Pure Genius air-purifying smart floor.
  • Matte (10%): Available on our superior Titanium Finish in our Designer and Ambiance Collection, as well as on certain products featuring our Pure Genius air-purifying smart floor.

*Please refer to your retailer and/or specific product pages for all the possibilities available standard and in option.

lauzon flooring hardwood blog luster gloss sheen gray bedroom

As you can see, we have something for every taste and every need. One thing’s certain—whether you opt for a high or low gloss level, your Lauzon hardwood floor will be beautiful, durable, and totally on-trend!

Come and visit a Lauzon retailer to see for yourself.


Published by:

Priscilla Bergeron

Hello and welcome to Art From Nature. I am Priscilla, Lauzon Flooring Brand Manager. I am a young and curious woman passionate about home décor, healthy living, nature and all things wood – hardwood floors most definitely included! Since I started working at Lauzon Flooring, I had the chance to meet so many great people; to work with an amazing team and to come across so many nice finds that I decided to share them with you through this blog. Follow along with me as this blog evolves into what I hope will be an interesting and inspiring journey. Priscilla

Thoughts on “Choose your hardwood floor sheen”

  1. Hi Priscilla,

    Can you confirm that Ambiance Red Oak Natural is available in either 10% (matte) or 20% (pearl) low gloss options? The tear sheet seems to only show “semi-gloss” as available in Ambiance.


    1. Hi, our Ambiance Natural Red Oak is currently available standard in Semi-Gloss (45%), but also as an option with an up charge, in other sheens like Perle (20%), as well as Velvet (35%) and Pearl (20%) with our Pure Genius. Please refer to your nearest retailer for more details or call our customer service at 1-800-665-6765. Thank you

  2. Hello Priscilla, I love the layout and the extremely high definition images used in this post and the clear descriptions of the different hardwood floors.

    1. Hi Cindy, thank you so much for this great feedback. We are always working hard to provide the best material possible.

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