What Color Should I Paint My Bathroom?

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If you are thinking of painting your bathroom but feel completely overwhelmed by the sheer number of colors, shades, and hues out there, then this post is for you. Because the bathroom tends to be a smaller room, it is a great place to “try on” a new color, trend, or just something different. But what color to choose for this project? We’ve researched to collect the best bathroom color suggestions and listed them below. You’re sure to find one that is just right for you!

These bathroom hues represent the various tones homeowners and designers alike have declared as their favorites. Serene, energetic, bold, or playful-these paint colors offer something for everyone. They are:

  • Blue Grey
  • Sea-Foam Green
  • Sage
  • Teal
  • Yellow
  • Orange
  • Charcoal 
  • Neutral

And since choosing your bathroom paint color is only your first task, we collected the best tips and tricks for the actual painting job, too.

Are you ready to see how these colors can transform your room? Read on–you might find yourself inspired by a color combination you hadn’t considered before!

A modern bathroom with white painted walls, white vanity, and a small indoor plant next to the mirror, What Color Should I Paint My Bathroom?

Best Bathroom Colors

Blue Grey

This light and airy blue-grey color combined with white tile and trim are reminiscent of a coastal home by the ocean. Its tone is serene and calm, open and uncluttered. Surely this color is a refreshing and uplifting hue to brighten your mornings.

Seafoam Green

Much like the blue-grey paint above, these seafoam green walls reinforce a comfortable spa-like restfulness and evokes a sense of well-being. This charming color works well with light and dark wood or white trim. What’s more, you can easily pair it with your favorite pastel colors to accentuate the light and airy feeling.

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Sage

This lush and organic-inspiring sage green paint brings about a grounding and centering feeling. Plants and other greenery incorporate elements of nature, and even the dark gold in the soap dispenser makes this room feel steady and natural.

Teal

Teal is a playful and unexpected color that is heightened in its brightness with a pink or golden yellow, as shown here. Plants and metal fixtures on the towel rack and shelf and a printed towel break up the intensity of the teal; however, a single saturated shade of this color, with a tiny pop of orange, in the example below, is striking as well.

Yellow

Bright, cheery, sunny yellow is a classic color urging us to rise and shine! Set atop white wainscoting, these walls are complimented by delicate blue and white trinkets. And while yellow flowers are shown here, large, leafy green plants would also be an excellent decorative touch.

Orange

Bedroom interior with hardwood floor A modern bathroom with white painted walls and a decorative orange tiled wall on the vanity

If yellow walls encourage us to rise and shine, then these orange walls call for playfulness and fun! Orange is energetic and bold. Notice how golden yellow towels complement the orange/white combination, with a dash of red in the tiles and floral decals to balance the giddiness of the orange walls.

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Charcoal

There is no need to be afraid of using dark colors either–this charcoal bathroom is sophisticated in its dark hue. It is a beautiful concept for a main-level bathroom with only one half of one wall in a neutral patterned wallpaper.

Neutrals

If you’re not ready for a bold or pastel pallet–or you want simplicity–neutrals are an attractive option, too. Beiges, browns, ivories, and greys emphasize an earthy feel to provide the steady and no-frills environment everybody can appreciate.

Unique Painting Techniques

Stenciling

Have you ever seen a beautiful stencil design on a wall and thought it was wallpaper? It adds distinction to the room and is far less costly than wallpaper or decals. In the example below, a white wall is transformed with a blue flower pattern and brings just enough color and texture to the bathroom to make it interesting.

Are you saying to yourself, “I could never do that!”? Well, don’t be so quick to judge yourself. Take a look at this video tutorial called “How to Stencil a Feature Wall in Only an Hour.” It is amazing how just the right tools and a little guidance can make you the artist of your wall design.

Herrington Bone Design

Would you believe that this expensive looking design was easily created using just painter’s tape? You might want to try this project on a small wall or perhaps on the space between your vanity bath counter and your mirror for a beginner. You can create a one of a kind backsplash using a single color or even alternating with various colors. This video tutorial, “DIY Painted Geometric Designs,” will help you every step of the way.

Stripes

If you like the classic look of a black and white bathroom but want to put your spin on it, why not try black and white stripes, as shown here? And here’s a good tip: vertical lines will make the room look taller and, conversely, horizontal stripes will make the room feel wider.

Find out how to paint crisp and straight stripes with this video, “How to Paint Stripes on a Wall.”

Bathroom Painting Questions

What Is The Best Paint Finish For A Bathroom?

If you’ve shopped for paint before, you know to be prepared to answer the question “What kind of finish would you like?” There are 6 finishes to choose from and they all refer to the amount of sheen you’d like on your walls. The basic rule of thumb is the higher the sheen, the easier to clean.

Since a bathroom is a high-traffic area, it’ll likely need to stand up to multiple wipe downs, accidental sprays, and even just a regular wash. However, high-sheen paints tend to highlight wall imperfections too easily, and some people don’t like a shinier wall.

Traditionally a semi-gloss was the best option for bathroom walls, but these days, with paint technology having come a long way, paint experts say a satin finish is a go-to recommendation as well. Sherwin Williams’ website has a thorough and helpful description of all 6 finishes and how they are best used.

Does Sherwin Williams Have Mildew Resistant Paint?

The most important thing you want to remember in choosing paint for your bathroom is that it should be mold and mildew-resistant. Think of all that water and humidity steaming up your bathroom regularly; it’s the perfect condition for hazardous microorganisms to thrive.

Thankfully, Sherwin-Williams, one of the most trusted names in the painting field, has developed three different lines of paint, Harmony, Duration, and Emerald, all with anti-microbial agents that inhibit the growth of mold and mildew.

Should You Prime A Bathroom Before Painting?

The simple answer is, “Yes, you should prime your bathroom walls before painting them.” However, many paint lines are available with a primer built into the paint color you’ll be using. If your walls are in good shape, that is, no patched over holes, leftover wallpaper residue, and a clean, smooth surface, you may be able to use one of the “paint-and-primer-in-one” products with satisfactory results.

However, any paint expert will recommend priming the bathroom walls first and applying the paint color you have chosen. When you use a separate primer on your bathroom walls, you’re doing more than just painting the first coat. Primer seals in the porous surface of the walls and its properties allow any additional paint layers to adhere to the wall more easily. It will also cover dark spots or previous colors of paint. Finally, using a primer is the best way to ensure full, even coverage in less time.

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Summary

Switching up the colors on your bathroom walls is an easy, inexpensive way to create a different look and feel in just a matter of hours. Use our suggested colors above as a guide to finding the “just right” hue for your room, and then appreciate your newly transformed room.

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