Are all those samples of beige looking identical? We can help.
Choosing a new paint color for your home can be a daunting task. How do you know which one will look the best? One way to make the process easier is to test out the paint colors in your home with the free color samples, courtesy of the paint aisle. But did you know that how the paint will look in your home will be completely different from how it looks in the store? Lighting, time of day, and even your window trim can significantly alter how your eye perceives color! In this blog post, we share our top 3 industry tips to help you choose the best paint color from the 18 samples on your "short-list".
1. Come back to the paint samples throughout the day
Undertones play a huge role in how color interacts with its environment. Just like when choosing the perfect red lip color, the same shade will look dramatically different depending on skin tone; that's why that bluish-red lipstick that pops on you fell totally flat when your best friend tried it.
Your home's paint color works in a similar way, except instead of the color playing off of skin tone, it's playing off the tone of the light source in the room. For example, direct sunlight will bring out warmer tones in paint color, but that same color will look cooler at nighttime when all the LED overhead lights are on.
This is why it's important to view paint samples in all different types of lighting before making a decision.
2. Move the samples around the room
Another way to see how a paint color will look in your home is by physically moving the samples around the room. Not only are direct and indirect light at play with how the color behaves, but you also want to pay attention to how the color looks against different features of the room.
Study how the color looks next to the furniture, the flooring, linens, plants, artwork, and trim. Each element will have an impact on how the color is perceived. For example, white paint might look stark and uninviting when placed next to a dark piece of furniture, but that same white could look airy and fresh when placed against light-colored woods.
In addition, the scene outside the window will also affect how the colors look inside the room. If you have a beautiful view of green trees, then a cool blue color might look stunning in the space. But, if your window looks out onto a brick wall, then that same blue might make the room feel cold and uninviting.
Test out larger paint samples (we recommend at least 18" x 18") throughout different parts of the room to get a sense of how it looks from a variety of angles. And don't forget to mix the sample really well before painting!
3. Pay attention to the finish
Paint color is also affected by the type of finish. Matte finishes absorb light, so the color will look more consistent throughout the room. High-gloss finishes reflect light, meaning the same color can vary a lot depending on the light source and intensity.
There's a lot more that goes into deciding what finish is right for the room, but generally, we recommend shying away from flat finishes in high-traffic areas of the home that are prone to dings, fingerprints, and scuffs. While high-gloss is durable and easy to clean, it's tricky to touch up without having to repaint the entire surface, and the shine can be overbearing in a small space or in direct lighting.
If you're unsure where to start when choosing a finish, medium finishes are like the perfect Goldilocks midpoint for most rooms around the house. Satin, pearl, or eggshell are the most common, they're easy to maintain, and will give your walls a little bit of vibrance without being too over-the-top.
The same paint color can look significantly different depending on the finish, so make sure to swatch in the finish you'll end up using - otherwise, that matte sample of understated Alabaster might end up looking like a blinding winter wonderland in a higher gloss finish when the morning sun hits it!
It can be tricky to know what color will look best in your space when looking at hundreds of paint chips at the store. But with these simple tips, you’ll be able to narrow down your options and find the perfect paint color that looks great - rain or shine!
If you're still not confident about what sample to choose, call us today and schedule your free consultation. With years of experience, let us take all the guesswork out of it! We'll guide you in selecting the right color, undertone, and finish that works best in your home, and we know it'll be a result that you'll love.