Best Neutral Paint Colors to Update Your Home

Update your home with one of the new best neutral paint colors. Freshen up the beige by choosing from the many warm and cool gray varieties with these recommendations, including coordinating whites for trim and baseboards.

Is it time to choose one of the new best neutral paint colors to update your home?

Color has powerful emotional resonance. Think about the bullfighter’s red cape or the tranquility of a vast blue sea.

Emotional Impact of Colors

  • Red: stimulating, raises blood pressure
  • Blue: calming, good for sleep
  • Green: comfort, tranquility
  • Pink: calming
  • Brown: comfort, togetherness, intimacy
  • Purple: wealth, extravagance, stimulates creativity
  • Orange: stimulates appetite
  • White: airy, open
  • Yellow: cheery when used sparingly, but be careful because studies have shown it can cause people to lose their tempers (one study even showed that babies cry more in yellow rooms!)

The best neutral paint colors unify a home, creating a calming, distraction-free environment. For the past several years beige varieties ranging from cream to café au lait have been the go-to choice in the Temecula Valley. These are fabulous, versatile neutrals that work well with a wide variety of home styles and are perfect for most Southern California homes. If your home has been beige for a while, gray is a modern update.

About Gray

  • Gray can be warm or cool, depending on the undertones. Warm gray has yellow or brown undertones, while cool gray has blue undertones.
  • “Greige” is a gray-beige that is very warm and in certain light can look quite beige.
  • Gray plays well with these pops of color: grass green, lemon yellow, ballet slipper pink, and bright aqua. These are great choices for accent pillows, a vase, or a framed print.
  • Mixing warm and cool tones can be an effective design technique. The most balanced rooms usually have a meticulously well thought out mix of both. Non-professionals should use an interior designer to help in choosing specific colors to get the proportion just right. No designer budget? You can confidently stick to a single warm gray to capitalize on its neutral appeal.
  • Selling your home? Warm gray interiors photograph beautifully, especially for online pictures.

Some Great Grays

  • Storm by Benjamin Moore: a cool, medium-toned gray
  • Montpelier Ashlar Gray by Valspar: a light gray from their Neoclassical Color collection
  • Manhattan Mist by Behr: a very light gray
  • Agreeable Gray by Sherwin Williams: a very light greige
  • Storm by Benjamin Moore: a cool, medium-toned gray

Best Supporting Players: Crisp Whites

White coordinates perfectly with gray for baseboards and other trim. Fresh white paint gives a crisp, well-tended overall impression to your home. The easiest way for a non-professional to select the best white is to first select your preferred gray, then use a white from the same manufacturer suggested as a design pairing.

White also makes a fantastic first impression in kitchens, as long as the paint is fresh and immaculate. White cabinets are timeless, elegant, and will make the room look roomy and expansive.

Image Source: Flickr/Dean Hochman


They call me "The Temecula Answer Lady" because I am your insider source for everything local. My husband Scott and I have been raising our daughters in the beautiful Temecula Valley since 2003. My passion for contributing to our amazing quality of life here in the Temecula Valley leads me to volunteer for organizations like National Charity League, Inc., Temecula Valley Chapter (a founding member and 2015-2016 president), Hillcrest Academy, MOMS Club of Temecula-Central (a past president), Congregation B'nai Chaim of Murrieta, among others.

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