How To Choose The Right Paint Color

Sabrina Soto gives us the primer on paints.

How To Choose The Right Paint Color
Courtesy of BEHR.

Picking a paint color can be daunting. Between choosing between the hundreds of swatches at your local hardware store, what level of gloss you need, and figuring out if a color actually works on your walls, your paint project may make you feel overwhelmed. But don't fret! We asked design expert Sabrina Soto to share her wisdom to add some calm to your process.

"Color is the thing people struggle with the most while sprucing up a space," says Soto. "But give yourself a break. Know that what happens on TV is not real life. An episode of HGTV maybe be 20 or so minutes, but you can take a few days to get the job done." In collaboration with BEHR's Color Clinic, the designer has shared her tips to help others pick the right palette. She even hosts a weekly FB Live video on Thursday at 4pm PST, where she provides advice to commenters while working on her own home projects.

How To Choose The Right Paint Color
Courtesy of BEHR.

"If you’re trying to tackle everything yourself, stick to a schedule and a budget," advises Soto. Looking for a neutral? "Silver Polish is a light grey that looks great in any room," she says. "With cabinets, go darker than you think you should. If you want to do a dark brown, it may look dark on the paint stain, but it will always look lighter on the wood. If you are going white, preparation is the way to go. Rent a sprayer and sand down the space first."

How To Choose The Right Paint Color
Courtesy of BEHR.

Once you choose a color, make sure you get the right finish. "For walls, I like a flat finish," says Soto. "When you put a high gloss on walls with imperfections, they will show up more. For windows or other trim, a semi-gloss can work." However before you go all in, don't forget to check out the color in real life. "Get a sample pot and place foam core in different parts of the space to test out the natural light," recommends Soto.

How To Choose The Right Paint Color
Courtesy of BEHR.

Soto's current color picks in her palette? "I love pink so much. I also love emerald green and really rich navy blues like ink." She reminds us not to also forget the classics, "Grays are in and they are not going away."

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