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Gloss Black Wrap vs Paint – Pros and Cons

While looking for car customization options in Los Angeles, car wraps stand out as one of the most popular ways to give a vehicle a whole new look. 


It is for good reasons too. Car wraps not only provide a car with a virtually new exterior, but also transform its aesthetic. When done right, a graphic-heavy car wrap makes the car almost indistinguishable from its factory body. 


But not all car wraps have to look like the work of a graffiti artist. In fact, most of the modern car wraps come with the promise of a toned down look that changes your car’s exterior in a subtle manner. 


Take the gloss black car wrap in Los Angeles, for instance. With a striking sheen and ultra sleek look, it appeals the most to those vehicle owners who want their car wrap to stand out with effortless style. By leaning towards these car wraps, they can get their car a whole new look without going through the process of getting a paint job.


But that’s where the question rears its head: Should you get a gloss black wrap or a paint job that resembles that look? To help you make an informed decision, here’s a one-on-one showdown between these two auto body treatments.


Visual Appeal


If you get a low-end car wrap and compare it to a high-end paint job, the latter would always stand out. Similarly, if you get a premium car wrap and measure its visuals against a cheap paint job, the car wrap will reign supreme as an auto body treatment. 


Tesla Model X with XPEL Ultimate

Tesla Model X with XPEL Ultimate paint protection

As long as you keep the comparison between the same quality of treatments, you will find that they are at the same visual quality. They have the same shine, same smoothness, and same richness in color. 


Whether you get a car wrap or a paint job, make sure that you get high quality work done through a credible professional. This ensures that you are getting optimal results while staying within your budget.



When installed or executed by an experienced professional, a high end gloss black wrap and a premium paint job offer the same kind of visual appeal. 




When it comes to durability, high quality car wraps tend to hold their own against rough usage. Even when they get a scratch or scuff, they can easily get smoothened out through a heat-induced treatment. 


Xpel Stealth on Porsche 918

Xpel Stealth finish clear bra paint protection on Porsche 918 with acid green accents

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for a paint job. Unless you have a protective covering on such as a clear bra shield, your car’s paint will be prone to wear and tear. Any scratch is likelier to be permanent than not, and covering it up seamlessly is a challenge that most auto body professionals would fail to accomplish. 


If you get a high end car wrap through a credible auto body specialist in Los Angeles, it could typically last for a good 10 years. A paint job lasts longer. But with overtime scratches, you usually need to get it redone within the same time frame.



Even with its so-called limited lifespan, the gloss black car wrap’s performance ranks higher than a paint job’s features. This is mostly due to its ability to get small scratches and scuffs out with targeted maintenance.




The gloss back car wrap is made out of high quality vinyl, which is attached to the car with premium adhesive. This adds an extra layer of protection between your vehicle’s body and the elements of weather. It also allows the car wrap to cover any smaller dents or scratches that already exist on your car’s body.


Even when your car gets a scratch or abrasion, its body underneath the wrap remains protected for the most part. This means that whenever you remove your car wrap, your car’s exterior is shown exactly the way it was when you put the car wrap on. 


On the other hand, a paint job doesn’t offer the same kind of sturdiness or provide your car with any external protection. Since it’s a paint coating on the vehicle’s body, any scratch against it goes right to the car’s exterior. Once again, you may need to get a clear bra or similar protective shield to add this protective feature to the paint job. 



A car wrap offers additional protection that doesn’t come with a paint job. It also covers any smaller dents or scratches that already exist on the vehicle, without the need for lengthy prep work. 




Assuming that your gloss black wrap goes all over your car, it will typically take 5-7 days to complete. The timing can vary if you have a large sedan or an intricate muscle car. Experienced professionals can complete the work faster, but it can still take anywhere from 3-5 days. This timeline can also be increased in case your vehicle’s shape needs more time for the car wrap to be installed.


The installation process of the gloss black car wrap in Los Angeles involves printing of the vinyl itself. From there, your chosen profesional can start installing the vinyl with an industrial grade adhesive (which usually comes from 3M). 


The process is time consuming and needs a lot of care. But for a seamless look, it is required that your auto body professional doesn’t cut any corners.


When it comes to a paint job, the process can still take anywhere from 5-7 days. This includes removal of older paint and drying time for the vehicle. The procedure involves different painting equipment. 


Whether you have a high end car or a typical sedan, it is recommended that you get the paint job done from a credible vendor. This gives you a premium finish that looks no different than a factory paint job.



The installation process for a gloss black wrap and high quality paint job takes the same amount of time. It all depends upon your car’s make and model as well as additional factors.




A gloss black wrap or a similar style of paint looks exceptionally well on any car. But that doesn’t guarantee that you wouldn’t get bored of the color down the line. Whether you want to change it up with your car’s looks or just want a brighter color scheme, it is important to know how the removal process goes for both treatments. 


Full Wrap on Porsche 918

Full Wrap on Porsche 918

The car wrap can take anywhere from 1-2 days to be fully removed. If the installation process was completed by a professional, the removal process would go smoothly. But if the installation professional used low quality adhesive or applied techniques that make the car wrap difficult to remove, the process can take longer. 


However, when the car wrap is removed, the cleaning and scrubbing process ensures that you can get your car back in the same condition that it was in when you had the car wrap installed. 


When it comes to a paint job removal, the process can take anywhere from 2-3 days. It is prudent to note that since you can’t just drive a car without paint on the streets, you also have to deal with a repainting job. This could take 5-7 days including the removal process. 



The gloss black wrap provides you with an easier removal process that also allows you to drive your car right out of the garage. Paint job removal takes time and doesn’t come without a new coat of paint.




When it comes to cost, a high quality gloss black car wrap could start from roughly $6,000. The cost may go up depending upon your car’s size and its built, as well as any related factors. Sometimes, it could also go as high as $10,000.


On the other hand, a high quality paint job starts from roughly $5,000. This could go as high as $7,500. The cost could also go up depending upon additional factors. 


A paint job needs you to install protective coating that could cost additional funds, with the cost depending upon the quality of protective film that you are installing on the vehicle. The paint could also need retouching or maintenance down the line, more than a car wrap does. This adds to the overall upkeep as well. 



A high quality car wrap in Los Angeles might be a bit more expensive than a premium paint job. 


However, the cost comparison between the two needs to be done while keeping car wrap’s additional protection and performance features in mind, as well as a paint job’s overtime maintenance and touch-up requirements.


This makes the gloss black car wrap and a similar paint job rank on the same level in terms of long term upkeep and expenses.


Overall Value for Money


A gloss black car wrap essentially provides more protection to your car while also making it stand out from the crowd. On the other hand, a paint job enhances your car’s aesthetic the same way, but it lacks any protection of its own. 


The upkeep for a car wrap also remains lower than that of a paint job. The risk of irreversible damage to a car wrap is also minimal in comparison to regular paint with no protective coating. 


Overall, a gloss black car wrap holds more value for money than a paint job of the same scale. With that being said, it’s imperative that you have this covering done through a reliable auto body professional. This is a key factor in ensuring that you can get the most out of your car wrap without any worries.

For more info on vinyl wraps and how to get then installed in Los Angeles, click here.

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