Ceramic Coating vs Paint Protection Film (PPF)

Do you take care of your vehicle? Do you care about how your car looks on the outside? Nothing beats the thrill of buying a new car and admiring the gleaming paintwork and bright exterior as it catches the light. Eventually, because of the natural wear and tear, being bleached by the sun and encased in watermarks, the vehicle loses its shine, and it’s never quite the same after a few years. But what if all of this could be avoided? You may have come across the words Ceramic Coating and Paint protection film.


During the Vietnam War, the US military encountered issues with scratches and paint damage on their vehicles. It was a major inconvenience that we are still dealing with today. The US military enlisted the assistance of local detailers to solve the problem of cars coming into contact with debris and natural elements, resulting in paint-related damage.

PPF, or paint protection films, were invented around this time. PPF saved the military time and energy spent on fleet maintenance by protecting the paint and body of not only their land-based automobiles but also their aircraft. The automotive industry took notice of this product quickly after its creation, and as a result, maintaining the paint job on our cars and motorcycles has become common practice in the modern era.

However, after a while, the world’s attention was drawn to Ceramic coating products. Ceramic coating products first appeared in the year 2000, at the turn of the century, to help shield the body of vehicles. Ceramic coating became a common concept in the marketplace as more people chose it. 

Today, they are regarded as one of the most essential products for extending the life of automobiles for future generations. Here is a detailed comparison of PPF vs. Ceramic Coating.


Paint Protection Film is a clear urethane material applied to any vehicle’s exterior painted surface. In a nutshell, automotive Paint Protection Film protects the quality of your car’s paint by lowering the risk of various types of damage, such as…

  1. Rocks and road debris cause chips and scratches.
  2. Swirl marks caused by washing
  3. Acidic contaminants cause chemical stains.
  4. Acidic contaminants cause chemicals to etch marks.
  5. Mineral deposits cause hard water spots.
  6. UV exposure causes oxidation (fading).


A ceramic coating is a liquid polymer that is applied to a vehicle’s exterior surfaces. It chemically bonds with the vehicle’s factory paint after application, forming a layer of protection and a hydrophobic surface. Ceramic Coating’s hydrophobic properties make it more difficult for contaminants to bond with your car’s paint. It provides two major benefits to the owner of the car. 

  1. It keeps the car cleaner for a longer period. 
  2. It simplifies the process of cleaning the car when the time comes. 

A ceramic coating will also help to reduce the likelihood of certain types of damages, like 

  1. Acidic contaminants can cause chemical stains. 
  2. UV rays exposure can cause oxidation. 
  3. Acidic contaminants can cause chemicals to etch marks. 


As you now know that both the products help to keep your car looking brand new for a longer period by protecting and maintaining the paint. 

Besides this central mutual goal, the two products share some performance characteristics. Both products, in particular, aid in the reduction of damage caused by acidic contaminants and UV rays. 

Finally, if you purchase Paint protection film or a ceramic coating, you will be increasing the value of your vehicle.  


Despite their similarities, Paint protection films and ceramic coatings differ significantly and serve different features. 

Ceramic coatings are thicker than Paint protection films. Furthermore, Paint protection film has chemical constituents that make it possible to self-heal, meaning that it returns to its original form after being indented or abraded. Because of these properties, Paint protection film can absorb rock chips, small scratches, swirl marks, and hard water spots without being completely disfigured. 

A ceramic coating lacks this capability. Despite some manufacturers’ and installers’ bizarre claims, a ceramic coating does not remove the danger of rock chips, scratches, swirl marks, and water spots. 

Ceramic coatings, on the other hand, have their advantages, especially in terms of the hydrophobic surface they generate. Some Paint protection films include a hydrophobic clear coat, but they rarely outperform a full ceramic coating. Furthermore, by applying a ceramic coating to your automobile, you get the advantages of its hydrophobic properties on all surfaces without requiring you to apply film to the entire vehicle. 


Both PPF and ceramic coating are highly suggested because they have many benefits in common, but they also have unique characteristics that will help you find the best protection for your vehicle. 

PPF outperforms ceramic coating in many terms of resistance to rock debris and rock chips. PPF can soak up damage even before it comes into contact with the paint. The ceramic coating, unlike PPF, does not contain a urethane film to secure the paint, but it does a wonderful job of delivering a glossy finish. Ceramic coating, on the other hand, is much more a long-term solution. PPF provides significantly more protection, but it may need to be changed as the film yellows and blisters over time. PPF can also dull the paint’s gloss, whereas ceramic coating helps in improving it.

Things to keep in mind:


  • Cosmetic worth.
  • It is easier to clean.
  • Keeps contaminants away from the car’s paint.
  • Enhances appearance.
  • Best suited for use on city streets.


  • Better resistance to scratches and hard water spots.
  • Increased durability.
  • Stop rock chips and self-heal.
  • Swirl marks are avoided during washing.
  • Best suited for rough use and country driving.

So, which product is best for your vehicle?

Now for the good news. You don’t have to choose between the two. Both can be used on the same vehicle. The power couple of Paint Protection Film and Ceramic Coating is the highest form of invisible car protection available.

This is how it works. 

The paint protection film is first applied to the areas of your vehicle that are most vulnerable.

To rock chips or scratches from road debris. Because Ceramic coating doesn’t guard against this type of damage, Paint protection film should be applied to these areas. The front bumper, hood, fenders, side mirrors, rocker panels, and rear wheel arch are frequently included. 

After the most vulnerable areas of your automobile have been protected with paint protection film, your entire vehicle will be coated with ceramic coating. The coating will adhere to both the factory paint and previously applied film. Coating, when applied on top of the film, provides an extra layer of protection against chemical etching and stains. It will also effectively help keep the film clean and contaminants-free, extending the film’s life. 

The ceramic coating will prevent oxidation and chemical etch marks and or stains anywhere else on the vehicle, whether shielded by film or not. Furthermore, the hydrophobic surface makes it more difficult for pollutants to pair up with the vehicle, preserving the paint cleaner and allowing washing easier. The ceramic coating’s smooth surface will also improve the gloss of your vehicle’s factory paint. 

Together, the two products will protect your car’s paint in the long run while also improving its appearance daily. 

So, if you want to protect and preserve the paint on your car so that it looks great every time you drive it, a fusion of Paint protection film and ceramic coating from Ultrakool could be the best option for you. 

Are you prepared to drive safely? If so, please contact us right away to set up an appointment or to ask any questions you may have about protecting the paint on your car.