The 7 Best Kitchen Cabinet Paint Colors
Posted on November 22, 2021
Making a selection from an infinite number of possible kitchen cabinet paint colors can be an arduous task. While trendy colors might spark your initial project inspiration, you still want to be smart about the hues you use. It’s important to pick a color (or colors) that will stand the test of time, as painting your kitchen cabinets can be a difficult, inconvenient task you likely won’t want to take on again anytime soon.
To that end, making the right color selection is just as important as investing in a quality paint and quality paint application. Kitchens, and especially kitchen cabinets, are subject to a lot of use, and they’re one of the most high-traffic areas of your home. You want this paint job to be able to withstand this daily wear and tear as best as possible for you and your family and still look nice while entertaining guests. The kitchen is often referred to as “the heart of the home,” and if it’s not in good shape, you won’t be happy.
In short: you should pick a color that will last, not only physically on your cabinets, but also in your favor. Here are our recommendations for a few classic kitchen cabinet paint colors that are anything but old hat.
White cabinets have been popping up all over the place recently, but they’ve always been a classic choice. They fit in with almost any kitchen style, and can make a kitchen feel modern, light and airy. White cabinets also allow other focal points in your kitchen to take the spotlight, such as your backsplash, countertops or flooring.
Some might knock white cabinets for being a more basic choice, but the truth is they’ll never go out of style, and you can keep them looking fresh and trendy by switching up other fixtures or décor in your kitchen. New cabinet hardware, for example, is just one way you can completely change the look of white cabinets. White cabinets are, truly, a blank canvas in your kitchen.
Colors for white kitchen cabinets come in cool and warm undertones, and finding the right choice for your kitchen can depend in part on those other kitchen accents. Pure White by Sherwin-Williams, for example, has a slightly cool undertone that is perfect for modern kitchens with cool-toned fixtures, like a gray tile backsplash or cool-toned marble or stone countertops.
Sherwin-Williams’s Snowbound, on the other hand, has a slightly warm undertone, which can play well with the warmth of wood flooring or shelving, warm stone countertops and other décor and fixtures.
Beige, Gray and Greige
If white cabinets are too stark for you, beige, gray and greige are more neutral cabinet colors that still offer many of the same benefits. Similarly to white, some might consider beige as simple and basic as it gets, but there is staying power in that simplicity. A warm or cool beige can accomplish many of the same things as warm and cool whites; they still present as a blank canvas for other fixtures in your kitchen to shine through, while giving you a pinch of color that white doesn’t. It can make a kitchen feel slightly more solid and anchored than white cabinets. Accessible Beige by Sherwin-Williams is aptly named—a true neutral beige that is accessible and can flex into different spaces, settings and styles with ease.
Gray kitchen cabinets are another versatile neutral option that offer a bit more edge than a beige. Gray cabinets can be a perfect choice for any kitchen, and with a wide range of shades and hues, there’s no doubt you’ll be able to find the right gray for your kitchen. Lighter grays like Benjamin Moore’s Metropolitan are a perfect alternative to white cabinets, and can be a wonderful accompaniment to white walls or subway tile. Darker grays like Sherwin-Williams’s Mineral Gray, which has a touch of blue as well, can be a good choice for those of us who like the appeal of dark black or navy cabinets, but want something a little less bold.
Of course, where beige and gray meet, you’ve got greiges and taupes, offering the best of both worlds you’d get with either beige or gray.
Black is becoming an increasingly popular choice for kitchen cabinets, with some going so far as to call it “the new white.” Black cabinets are modern, sophisticated and definitely add a touch of luxury to any kitchen. Black cabinets also fit in well with black appliances, which have always been a trendy option but have recently grown even more popular. Appliance manufacturers have noticed an increased demand for black appliances and have responded with a wider range of options to suit even more shades of black cabinets.
Black cabinets can be a grounding choice for base cabinets, and many homeowners who are attracted to the idea of black cabinets start by painting base cabinets or an island black, while keeping upper cabinets a lighter color. Black also hides scuff marks, which is another bonus to having black base cabinets.
Navy is another dark, bold cabinet color that will likely never go out of style. Like black cabinets, navy cabinets are timeless while still making a statement. Dark hues like black, navy and green are all trending in popularity for kitchen cabinet colors.
Navy, like black, can also be mixed in with other kitchen cabinet colors and are another great option for base cabinets and islands. Navy works especially well with other trending colors for cabinet hardware and metal fixtures, like brass and copper.
Green cabinets are back in a big way, and if you’re still traumatized by the avocado kitchens of the past, fear not. While some speculate that even avocado cabinets could come back into vogue, there are plenty of other shades and hues of green that will allow you to buy into this trend without entering the land of guacamole.
Light mint and sage greens are quickly becoming a stylish neutral option for chic kitchens looking for something more interesting than the usual whites, beiges and grays. On the other end of the shade spectrum, dark olive and forest greens can easily fill the same spaces as black or navy cabinets.
Mixing and Matching Undertones
Beyond picking a color or color family, picking the right undertones within that color can make a big difference in the finished look. Picking contrasting undertones can help make different elements of your kitchen pop, like pairing a cooler cabinet color with warmer accents in the hardware and countertops. Kitchen cabinet colors with undertones that match the rest of your kitchen can create a cohesive look, or, if not done right, make your kitchen look washed out. It’s not a bad idea to bring in color consulting experts to make sure you’re picking the right colors for your kitchen.
Picking a Finish
While not quite as important as picking the kitchen cabinet color itself, selecting a finish is another consideration that can affect the look of your kitchen. Semi-gloss finishes are typically the most popular choice for cabinets, as they provide a soft sheen that’s easy to wipe clean, an essential feature for high-traffic areas. Flat or matte finishes can diffuse light beautifully, and make a stark statement compared to standard semi-gloss finishes. However, they can be more difficult to maintain and clean, and easier to scuff than semi-gloss or gloss finishes. And if you can’t decide between the two, a satin finish can provide the best of both worlds.
Once you’ve selected your color and your finish, the next step is to actually get started on your project! Painting cabinets, especially kitchen cabinets, can be a huge undertaking. Trying to tackle the project yourself can sometimes take your kitchen out of commission for weeks, and having such an essential part of your home be out of use can be a nightmare, especially if you have pets or little ones.
You want the job done quickly and efficiently, so go with the pros. Our cabinet refinishing and repainting service ensures your new kitchen cabinets are painted by skilled experts. Regardless of what kitchen cabinet colors you choose, make sure the job is done right with CertaPro Painters®.