The living room is often the heart of the home—where your best memories take place, from holiday mornings to family game night. It’s also where your design elements culminate in the most public part of the house. This pivotal function means it has to be on point, much like these pretty rooms.
Nominating a paint color that best expresses your inventive side, while simultaneously accommodating your Netflix binge moods, can seem like a daunting task.
That’s why we tasked some of our favorite design experts to aid us in narrowing down the most-adored living room paint ideas, both bold and breezy, depending on your style. Proceed with caution—they’re all pretty dreamy and we don’t advise trying them all at once.
Emerald Symbolizes Balance and Harmony
We’ve been seeing more and more designers opting for the deep dark interior wall colors and we’re here for it. One look in particular that we can’t get enough of is a living space swathed in deep, glossy emerald green. Seek a green that leans toward jade more than shamrock (blue undertones over yellow), to get that opulent look.
White Represents Light, Goodness, and Purity
Victoria Smith of SF Girl By Bay sticks close to her signature: Benjamin Moore’s Oxford White. “It's got a very bright, clean look to it and doesn't lean too cool or too warm,” she tells us. In living rooms with optimal natural light, this sleek ivory allows rays to bounce off, filling the room with a glow. Play up this crisp color with mustard throw pillows, dusty pink accents, and polished hardwood floors.
Red Is the Color of Extremes
Follow in the footsteps of the late great Diana Vreeland and blanket your busiest room in a bright, rich red. A color synonymous with so many power words, it sends a serious message. This look reads best finished with a gloss to aid in bouncing ambient light from wall to wall instead of absorbing it. If you’re not ready to paint the whole town red, start with a statement wall.
Neutral Brings Elegance and Serenity
If the eye-catching wall color is not within your design scope, a soft, versatile neutral is always a safe bet. “We typically opt for the wow color moments in the fabrics and accessories, rather than on the walls, to keep the living room a more transitional space, like the formal center of the home,” says Christine Markatos Lowe. Seek a natural tone like Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray—it has the ability to be a comforting blank slate for your creativity to shine through décor accents.
Charcoal Symbolizes Strength and Mystery
Benjamin Moore's color and design expert, Hannah Yeo, suggests a deep neutral that brings a big mood to your living room. Her suggested hue is Taos Taupe, a warm charcoal color that can make its designated space feel instantly cozy and nested. “Study its undertone within the color to see how you can enhance or downplay other hues in the room,“ says Yeo. We suggest pairing it with a natural-colored sofa or cream trim to really make its versatile color profile pop. Once the paint dries, pull on a chunky knit throw blanket and hunker down until summer.
Black Brings Sophisticated Elegance
This well-achieved matte black interior wall is totally grown-up punk and we love it. To nail this look, ensure it’s either opposing a window to allow light to pool around the black and balance the darks and lights, or call your handyman and have them place strategic sconces to illuminate the chosen black wall or walls. Avoid the harshness that’s often associated with black by using brass brushed fixtures or uplifting abstract art pieces.
An Accent Wall
Marina Hanisch wants you to cozy up to the idea of an accent wall. Whether painted or clad in wallpaper, this statement can speak volumes in creating a unique experience within a living space. If you’re unsure how loud of an accent you’re ready for, Hanisch suggests starting with neutrals, “alternating between black and white walls.” However, if you’re ready to go bold, she prompts you to jump right in with some wallpaper and matching paint. She says it's "a sure way to get that wow factor and instantly whip up a more intimate space."