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What Paint Should You Use in a Dark Room?

Your master bedroom doesn’t get enough natural light and feels dismal and gloomy. Your living room has very few windows, and you hate inviting guests into the cave-like, cramped-feeling room. Aside from a complete remodel to let in more natural light, what can you do to create a space you actually want to spend time in?

Use the magic of paint! Read on for tips to choose the right paint for your dark room.

Avoid White

Yep. This goes against our natural inclinations, but white is not the right color for a dark space. That’s because white reflects natural light. And if there’s no natural light in your space, white isn’t going to have anything to reflect. It can even make the room feel darker.

Embrace Warm-Toned Neutrals

Warm-toned neutrals will brighten up your dark space. Avoid choosing dark tones, and stay medium.

Remember, there isn’t much light in your dark room to reflect off the color you paint on the wall. So you’ll need to pick colors that are more saturated, without much black in their base. Brighter colors are your friend in a dark room.


Yellow can bring a sunny feel to a dark space. When you pair it with adequate artificial light and white accents, it can make a dark room feel bright and happy.


Lavender just works, and it has enough shades to suit a variety of tastes — both masculine and feminine, both playful and serious. Its warm tones help to add brightness to a room that is dark. Your accessories and accent colors will dramatically change lavender’s impact. Keep it sophisticated in your master bedroom with gray and white furniture and accents, or make it playful in your child’s room with pastels.


Yes, this seems counterintuitive, but when done right, brown creates a really powerful effect in a room that doesn’t have a lot of natural light. Chocolate brown walls are warm, and create a comfortable feeling. Feel like brown on every wall is too much? Choose one accent wall, and keep the rest of the elements in the room light — pale floors, light furniture, and light accents.

Powder Blue

Blue is a versatile color, and it brings a level of calmness to any room. Soothing and peaceful, this color makes you feel secure and at peace. It also adds a brightness to a dark space that is lacking in natural light.


Pink is great for brightening up a space, and you can take it in a feminine or masculine direction, or keep it more neutral.


Light grays, or grays with a bit of color in the base, can actually brighten up a dark room. Avoid dark grays, as they will make the room feel cave like.

At New Life Painting in Pismo Beach, we know the transformative power of paint. We’re thrilled when we can take a room that nobody wants to enter, and turn it into a relaxing sanctuary, fun gathering place, or a comforting place of security. When you work with New Life Painting, you’ll have access to our color consultant who will be able to guide you in your vision of how you want your home to look and feel. Give us a call at (805) 937-9836, or contact us online for a free consultation.

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