Tips for Choosing the Right Gray Paint for Your Home


How do you find the perfect shade for your walls? Do you want a light grey or charcoal grey? A blue-ish grey or yellowish-ish grey?

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You’re re-painting your home, and you think gray might be nice. But there’s gray…and then there’s gray. There are so many varieties of gray. How do you choose the perfect gray for your home interior?

Top interior designers all agree gray is one of the best colors for home interiors. How do you find the perfect shade for your walls? Do you want a light grey or charcoal grey? A blue-ish grey or yellowish-ish grey? These are all the questions I found myself asking myself repeatedly every time I visited Home Depot in search of the perfect gray paint for our home interior.

The “perfect gray” for me ended up being Behr Toasty Gray N320-2. We used this paint throughout our entire house and then used a flat white for accented baseboards, ceilings, window trim, and stairs. 

Behr Gray Paint for Interior PERFECT Gray Paint for Your Home 

When I was looking for the perfect gray for our home, I started on Pinterest. I pinned nearly a billion rooms with gray walls that I liked, and then I narrowed down my options. Then I considered things in our home, such as our furnishings, the light, the ambiance I wanted to create, and our home’s overall aesthetics. These things helped minimize my options, and then a couple of trips to Home Depot picking up samples finalized my decision.

how to choose the perfect gray paint for your home

Tips for Finding the Perfect Gray Paint for Your Home

Consider Your Home’s Furnishings

The first step is to figure out your room’s undertones so that the color you choose will complement, not clash, with your furnishings and textiles. Are there many warm hues in the furniture and fabrics – shades like brown or taupe, red, orange, or yellow? If so, look for a gray with warm undertones, hints of tan or beige. But if there are more cool tones of green, blue and purple in the room, a cool gray will be best, one with a bluish or greenish tint.

how to choose the perfect gray paint for your home

Watch the Light in Your Home

The light that enters the room, especially during the day you’re most often in it, makes a difference in the gray you choose. Rooms with little natural light – such as north- and west-facing rooms and rooms with few windows – can feel chilly. A warm gray makes a coldish room glow with coziness and calm. Rooms with southern exposure and rooms with lots of windows get plenty of light. These sunny rooms look great with cooler grays that feel airy and fresh.

how to choose the perfect gray paint for your home

Remember the Ambiance

What kind of room are you painting? Bluish gray tones are stunning in ultramodern industrial lofts, and these cool tints echo peaceful water in rooms with an ocean or lake view. Rooms designed for coziness and repose, like living rooms and master bedrooms, benefit more from the warmth and comfort of a “greige,” a gray with beige undertones.

Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment

Before investing in the paint for an entire room, do some research and experimentation. Check out photos of rooms online, on Pinterest, and on paint company websites; remember that the computer screen may distort the color. At a paint store, choose several paint sample cards of varying tones and take them home. Tape them side by side on a wall and look at them – as well as at the room’s furniture and textiles – at different times of the day. When you’ve narrowed down the choice to two or three options, consider purchasing paint samples, small pots of paint that cost much less than a full gallon. Paint large squares on each wall of the room and again check them in a different light.

how to choose the perfect gray paint for your home

Think Outside the Box

Gray doesn’t have to be light or even neutral. Dark grays work well as accent walls and can even be used to color an entire room, especially if paired with vivid fabrics in bright colors like citrus orange, cranberry red, or canary yellow.

With so many great choices, there’s gray…and gray…and then there’s the gray that is perfect for your room!

PS: Do you like how we have our home decorated? You can shop our home decor in the House Fur Shop!


Join the Conversation

  1. Maya Tuinstra says:

    Toasty grey is what we have in the master bath and bedroom at the current house. We wanted something similar for the new house, I think it’s a Sherwin Williams color this time though.

  2. Jessy John says:

    Informative post! I have been researching about tips for choosing paint colors for my new 2 BHK apartments in Calicut and came across this site. I liked the way how you have explained the tips for choosing gray paint for homes. What is your opinion regarding color psychology? I have heard that it would be better to paint the rooms according to the color psychology. Is that true? Also, I came across another blog which shares the tips for choosing perfect color for blogs ( ).

  3. This is so interesting. Thanks for the information.

    1. Ren Lenhof Author says:

      You are welcome! Thanks for reading! 🙂

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