It's time to look beyond blue and pale gray when you think about cool colors. A cool color palette can include green, deep gray, lavender, and aqua. Using cool colors in a palette keeps a room balanced when used with warm colors. Most often, the warm color in a room will come from surfaces and wood furniture. Cool paint colors can soften an overly warm space filled with cabinetry or wood flooring.
The secret to choosing the right cool colors for your space is identifying the undertones of each color. A cool color isn't only a color that has gray tones. Cool colors can have a blue or green cast, which makes them more challenging to use. Sampling paint colors is your secret weapon in choosing the right cool colors. Unlike warm colors, the lack of lighting in a room can make you miss the undertone, which might be offputting in full light. It is essential to sample the colors with full lighting or at the height of peak sun for the room.
- Color Family: Cool colors
- Complementary Colors: Warm colors; earth-tones and forest greens
- Pairs Well With: Cool tones go well with bright white, other cool colors, and warm color accents for contrast
- Mood: Calm, relaxed, and refreshing
- Where to Use: Most popular in bedrooms and bathrooms; also works in kitchens, exteriors, exercise or meditation rooms
Here are the best cool paint ideas for your home from Sherwin-Williams.
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If you're looking for a fun green paint color, consider Shagreen. This green is right on the cusp of warm and cool with just enough softness to push it over to the cool side. The beautiful thing about Sherwin-Williams Shagreen is that it has an effortless coolness but retains a touch of yellow undertone that gives it a natural look.
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Don't forget deep and charcoal gray when you're choosing cool colors. Software by Sherwin-Williams is almost as dark as charcoal gray but keeps a bit of depth that makes it more usable in a variety of spaces.
Software is stunning when paired with a medium-tone blue or aqua, an accent of creamy white, and dark brown. For a calming space, think blue walls, a Software accent wall, a creamy white trim, and rich brown wood floors.
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No list of cool colors is complete without a beautiful sky blue. Open Air by Sherwin-Williams is a bit more complex than just a simple sky blue; it has a hint of aqua. Aqua blues are perfect in a sleek kitchen with white cabinets and dark countertops. A soothing hue, it works in bedrooms, nurseries, and bathrooms, too.
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Respite by Sherwin-Williams is a mid-tone blue that is a classic, traditional hue. This color would be comfortable in a living or family room and has a relaxed feeling to it. Mid-tone wood flooring and trim would go well with Respite, especially in a casual space. Don't overlook a pretty blue like Respite for a front door, exterior furniture, or the exterior of a Cape Cod-style home.Continue to 5 of 10 below.
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Warmer than mint green, Sherwin-Williams Topiary Tint has all the fun of popular mint colors with the brightness that can overwhelm a space. Topiary Tint in a guest room or dining nook is perfect for a garden-style retreat. Minty greens are a popular unisex color for nurseries, offering a soothing, calming mood for the room.
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Lavender belongs on any list of the best cool colors. Sherwin-Williams Breathtaking is rich enough to avoid looking too old-fashioned or sentimental. You can use a lavender hue like Breathtaking as you would an aqua or mint green. It can pair well with a black and white color scheme for a casual kitchen or bedroom.
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Many designers swear by Sherwin-Williams Filmy Green as the perfect green neutral. Formerly, sage green had been the go-to green, but it has faded in popularity, being replaced by muted, neutral greens minus the blue undertones that dated sage greens had. Filmy Green gives off a soothing, mysterious vibe. This versatile color is suitable for any room in the house.
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Fleur de Sel is light gray with a blue-green undertone. If the vibe you want is calm and peaceful, then this cool gray is just right for a clean, spa-like atmosphere. It's the perfect color to give you a coastal design aesthetic in the living room or throughout the house, and it also makes for a serene, neutral nursery or bedroom. Pair it with bright white trim to make the gray tone pop.Continue to 9 of 10 below.
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Icy sky blue stands out on kitchen cabinets. It refreshes the room and leaves a clean, airy feeling. Likewise, it pairs well on the kitchen walls with white cabinets, brightening any spot you put it. This ethereal shade works well with cream, white, gray, and natural wood trim. This color also fits nicely in spa-like bedrooms or living rooms styled in a coastal, breezy way or following a retro midcentury modern concept.
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If you're looking for a cool, rich shade for your library, office, or formal dining room, then Sherwin-Williams Naval is the perfect paint color. It's dark blue with some purple undertones, and it makes a dramatic statement. This color begs for bright white trim, gold accents, natural wood tones. Since this color is so dark, the room will need plenty of light bathing it, so it doesn't drown in its navy depths.