The Differences Between Satin Nickel & Brushed Nickel

Updated February 21, 2017

When redecorating a room, you have huge number of options regarding the finish of any metalwork. Nickel is commonly used in the house for a range of applications, but, along with the standard version of the metal, there are variations, including satin and brushed nickel.

Satin Nickel

Satin nickel is not a metal in itself, but refers to the nickel plating put on brass. It is applied to the brass through electrolysis and is then treated with a lacquer to dull the nickel's usually shiny surface.

Brushed Nickel

Brushed nickel follows the same principles as any other brushed metal, such as aluminium. Once the nickel has been forged into the required shape, it is brushed with wire so there are small abrasions on the metal, all going in the same direction. This takes some of the natural shine off the metal, but not all.


Neither of these nickels have any special properties after being treated. The only difference between satin and brushed and pure nickel is that the treatment takes away the lustre of the metal.


Both of these nickels are used in the same applications and are chosen purely on aesthetic appeal. Normal applications include light switch surrounds, door fixtures and faucets.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Chris Rowling has been a professional writer since 2003. He has written news and features for publications covering insurance, pensions and financial markets as well as articles for local newspapers such as the "Richmond and Twickenham Times" and the "Hounslow Chronicle." Rowling graduated in 2002 from St. Mary University, London, and took a postgraduate degree in journalism.