9 Popular Paint Colors for Interiors: A Complete Guide

Allie Ogletree
Written by Allie Ogletree
Updated May 4, 2023
A pink armchair in a living room with dark gray walls
Photo: Photographee.eu / Adobe Stock

Choose the perfect paint color for your home and personality

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Nothing can change the look and feel of a room more drastically than a fresh coat of paint. But choosing from the dozens of popular paint colors can be exciting and a bit overwhelming. Don’t stress—we’ve rounded up the most popular paint shades in every color to help you pick the perfect hue for your space.

If you need additional help, consult a local interior painter to get their expert shade advice, plus they can transform any room or area of your home with high-quality, professional paint skills.

1. White

A living room painted in popular white tones, including different tones of white paint
Photo: Michael / Adobe Stock

Painting your walls a fresh, clean white can create a blank-canvas effect that will make your furniture and accessories pop. But the color white can be misleading, as there’s a huge range of white paints available. Even the slightest difference in hue can profoundly affect your room’s aesthetic, be it off-white, ivory, eggshell, or some other shade of white. Consider using a cool white for a modern or contemporary home, an ivory hue that doesn’t go overboard on warmth, or a creamy white with a hint of pink.

For inspiration: 

2. Gray

A living room painted in popular gray tones, including different tones of gray paint
Photo: FollowTheFlow / Adobe Stock

Gray is a staple paint color in homes around the country, and for a good reason: it’s classic, understated, and provides a neutral background for any room. Whether you go for a true neutral gray with a cool undertone, a warm greige (a soft blend of gray and beige), or a gray with unique undertones like green or violet, there are many options for customizing your home with the color gray. These paint shades make great options for transforming your primary bedroom, hallway, and living room.

For inspiration: 

3. Beige

A living room painted in popular beige tones, including different tones of beige paint
Photo: FollowTheFlow / Adobe Stock

It’s no secret that beige is back in a major way. Beige’s warm tones and understated look offers a photogenic backdrop for decorations and furniture alike. This inviting color creates the ideal space for cozying up, but not every beige is equal. Some beige hues are a light, almost off-white color, while others have a rich, sandy tone that is browner in color. Consider using lighter beiges in sunnier rooms like the living room and deep, sandy hues in rooms with darker furniture.

For inspiration: 

4. Light Blue

A bathroom painted in popular light blue tones, including different tones of light blue paint
Photo: Iriana Shiyan / Adobe Stock

Light blue is a popular go-to color for children’s rooms, nurseries, playrooms, and bathrooms, but it also works wonders in bedrooms, living rooms, and more. Lighter shades of blue can be perfect as stand-alone colors or paired with a darker or patterned accent wall for a more mature effect. 

For inspiration: 

5. Dark Blue

A living room painted in popular dark blue tones, including different tones of dark blue paint
Photo: ostap25 / Adobe Stock

Dark blue paint isn’t for the faint of heart, as this color tends to have a soothing yet almost melancholy effect depending on stylistic elements like furniture, trim color, artwork, and choice of lighting. However, a dark blue hue works well in bedrooms because it’s a calming shade that may relax you into a sweet slumber. 

Determine which type of dark blue works best for your space—royal blue pairs well with metallic accents or other bright colors while cool blue has hints of a grayish-green hue that resembles the deep sea and pairs well with a bohemian aesthetic.

For inspiration: 

6. Green

A living room painted in popular green tones, including different tones of green paint
Photo: FollowTheFlow / Adobe Stock

Green is a flexible color that tangos with different moods, depending on the room’s interior design. A deep shade of green can anchor a space and help bring neutral, natural tones to any room, while a light green can brighten up a room and create a sense of nature in an otherwise plain room. Soft greens that verge on the pastel side work well in simple, crisp rooms like home offices and kitchens.

For inspiration:

7. Sage

A bedroom painted in popular sage tones, including different tones of sage paint
Photo: FollowTheFlow / iStock / Getty Images Plus / Getty Images

A hybrid between green and gray, sage is a trendy color that is more subdued than green but still gives off earthy, soothing effects. You can use sage in any room, like a living room, bedroom, kitchen, or even paired with red brick. Sage paint comes in several shades, ranging from a more taupe hue to a light gray to dark yellow. Moody sage hues have a cool gray undertone fit for bringing out your hardwood floors, wood furniture, and wooden cabinetry.

For inspiration: 

8. Black

A living room painted in popular black tones, including different tones of black paint
Photo: tulcarion / E+ / Getty Images

Black, long thought of as a no-no for interior surfaces, found its way into homes across the country over the years. Black paint can make your space seem modern and slick, making it a great option for doors and door frames, an accent wall, or a small space that houses bold accessories. When choosing a shade of black, pay attention to its undertones and pigmentation.

For inspiration: 

9. Brown

A living room painted in popular brown tones, including different tones of brown paint
Photo: Cinematographer / Adobe Stock

Dark and earthy, brown can be the unexpected but much-appreciated backdrop for bedrooms, dining rooms, living rooms, playrooms, and more. Dark browns pair perfectly with natural wood accents, earth-toned decor, or pops of warm colors in pillows, blankets, or other accessories. On the other hand, light brown paint shades pair well with yellow, gold, dark brown, and gray accents.

For inspiration: 

Julia Pelly contributed to this article.

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