Brown Paint Color Ideas

This surprising neutral adds warmth and charm

Bed and nightstand table

Jo-Ann Richards / Getty Images

Brown as a paint color: popular? Who would've thought so? It's true: Paint manufacturers indicate that alongside such perennial favorites as white and yellow, brown paint colors are hot sellers.

The hype adds up—deep browns can have a retro effect, hearkening back to Mad Men-style gentlemen's clubs. Or you can lighten up your shade of brown and evoke the feeling of a darkening desert.

There are plenty of reasons to use brown paint in your space:

  • Warmth: Brown emits a sense of security and home. Try brown walls in your dining room, living room, den, or library.
  • Stains: Kids can wreak havoc on walls. It's important to have an interior paint color that can camouflage fingerprints and other stains.
  • Tradition: Brown is a classic color that is well associated with traditional design schemes. 
  • Style: Though brown falls in the neutral category, it's considered a strong neutral that pushes boundaries and contains some edge.
  • Elegance: Brown paint colors can lend rooms an elegant, sophisticated, and even urbane look. 

The look shown was achieved by using "Bungalow Gold," a warm, sandy shade from Valspar Eddie Bauer Home.

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    Arts and Crafts

    brown paint colors arts and crafts
    Homey Brown from Valspar Eddie Bauer® Home Valspar

    Lend your home a classic arts-and-crafts feel with "Burnt Brick," also from Valspar Eddie Bauer Home. It contrasts well with the off-white of the wainscot.

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  • 02 of 04

    Take It Easy

    brown dining room color with red tone
    Brown Paint Colors for a Living Room - From Valspar Valspar

    Not all brown paint colors have to be hard-hitters. "Tawny Bluff" from Valspar has a distinct red tone reminiscent of red clay earth to give your dining room a comfortable, familial feeling.

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    A Calm Dining Destination

    brown dining room in neutral
    Brown Dining Room Paint Color Valspar

    The shade shown is called "Lyndhurst Timber," also from Valspar. It's a true neutral but isn't at all mousy or timid. Besides, a challenging color in the dining room can vanquish your appetite—a calm wall color makes for a better dining experience.

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    Grounding Earth Tones

    earth colors brown paint
    Earthen Brown Paint Color - Valspar Valspar

    As an earth tone, brown keeps things grounded and stable. This light brown from Valspar, "Dakota Trail," is predominant here, matching well with the oak newel post, the balusters of the stairs, and the stone wall.