High Gloss Kitchens have been in style since the turn of the century.  They reflect light and when used in a sleek design can make a small room seem much larger.  They’re easy to clean and, if maintained as per instructions, they can last the test of time.

If you’re considering a gloss kitchen it’s important to know the options available in the marketplace.  There are a number of options and your choice will impact how long your kitchen lasts and how it performs in your home.

Below you’ll find a summary of the pros and cons of the different options…


Option 1: Vinyl Wrapped or Foil Wrapped Doors

The door is either comprised of MDF (medium density fibreboard) or MFC (melamine faced chipboard) and covered in a thin layer of gloss wrap.  In lay-mans terms it’s almost like putting contact on your schoolbooks!

This is generally the option sold by Ikea/Homebase/Argos/Cash & Carry when it comes to gloss kitchens.


* Cheapest option

* Doors are available in almost any size – flexible

* Curved door options are available – as are frames (even though this designer is not a fan of either!)


* Will peel in time – dependant on usage & care taken by owner – estimated life span of 5-7 years.

* Will generally be rounded at edges – so doesn’t yield a sharp modern look like other options

* If you view the door at light you will see ripples in the finish – what is known as “orange peel effect”

Example of Orange Peel Effect:

Orange Peel Effect


Option 2: Painted High Gloss 

Door comprised of MDF or MFC with several layers of high gloss paint and finished with a layer of clear lacquer.  This style of door is the mid-range price option.  It is generally factory produced, often abroad, and off standard size options are usually not possible.


* Robust finish

* Reflective – without orange peel effect

* Mid price range

* Edges on doors are not visible – seemless paint finish from front to sides of door

* Square edged to yield sharper designs

* Curved doors are available


* Usually less flexible for the kitchen designer – off standard size options are not possible.

* Lacquered finishes are more susceptible to scratching when in everyday use.


Option 3: Acrylic Gloss Doors

The door is generally made of MDF.  There is a layer of paint applied to the MDF and the door is finished with a bonded layer of plastic.

Edges of the doors can be either matching or 3D Metallic.


* Off standard door sizes are possible – so flexibility of design is excellent

* Curved doors or frames are generally not available

* The colour options are discreet and tasteful as these are the latest gloss options on the market.

* 3D Metallic edging adds another feature to the design of the kitchen.

* Finish is usually superb – highly reflective mirror-like finish

* Very robust & easy to maintain


* There is generally a visible line between the edge of the door and the door on the matching edge options

3D Edging on Acrylic Gloss Door:

3D Acrylic Edging


Vinyl with Lighting
Vinyl Gloss Door with Light Reflected
Acrylic Gloss Door
Acrylic Gloss Door with Light Reflected


Option 4: Glass Kitchens Doors

A new trend hitting the market is the glass kitchen door.  Toughened glass with the back painted in the desired colour is bonded to either MFC or MDF.


* Flawless Finish

* Highly reflective


* Very expensive

* Less flexibility with door sizes – weight become a factor with hinges.


Red Vinyl Door with Curved Corners & Acrylic Door with Straight Corners:

Vinyl Vs Acrylic Gloss



General points to note when it comes to your modern kitchen:

* Go to an expert for your design – there is nothing worse than a gloss kitchen designed in the classical style.  It must be modern.  Look at previous jobs installed by your expert.

* Unsure as to your pallette? – trends point to neutral colours.

* Consider mixing it up with Woodgrains or Matt accents

* If you’re choosing dark colours bear in mind that finger prints are more evident – particularly on wall units where light reflects more.


Happy Shopping!








Newhaven Kitchens

Newhaven Kitchens & Bedrooms have designed and built bespoke kitchens of every style, size and shape. Come and see how we can help you get the kitchen of your dreams.

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