How to Choose Bathroom Colors and Sheen

July 1, 2022

Are you in the middle of a bathroom renovation or perhaps just refreshing the most used room in your home? If so, we have a few suggestions on how to choose your color palette and the level of sheen you may want to create a space that is both relaxing and easy to maintain.

Bathrooms are one of the highest traffic areas of the home aside from the kitchen. This is even more true if you have young or teenage children. Bathrooms are also high moisture and humidity rooms that need proper ventilation or issues like mold and mildew could become problematic.

Knowing that bathrooms see lots of traffic and need to have surfaces that are easy to clean and wipe down, here are some of our suggestions on choosing the right sheen (finish) as well as the color palette.

The Importance of Paint Finish

As we mentioned bathrooms see a lot of action, especially action that includes water, moisture, and humidity.

Think about it. Every time a hot shower is run, humidity builds on the walls and ceiling. Every time the faucet runs or the toilet flushes, water is added to the environment. That’s why many designers and paint professionals suggest using a paint sheen that is glossier and therefore more durable and easier to clean.

As a quick guide, there are generally five main finishes or sheens that paint can come in from flat/matte all the way up to high gloss. The lower the sheen, the less shiny the paint is and the more coverage they provide. The higher the sheen (semi-gloss or high gloss) the shinier the paint and the more durable/easier to clean. The trick is knowing which rooms and locations each sheen should be used.

Most painting professionals agree that some sheen in a bathroom is good for the ease of wiping down the walls without damaging the paint as well as for deterring the moisture from penetrating the wall surface. In most cases, satin sheen or finish is the best in the bathroom as it is durable and more easily cleaned than flat/matte, or eggshell finishes.

Color Choices

Choosing the right color for your bathroom space can be transformative and create a space where you can enjoy a relaxing bath after work or shower and ready yourself for a busy workday each morning. A bathroom, for many, is an escape and should have an aesthetic appeal as such.

If you are looking for a neutral or white, we love Dove Wing OC-18 by Benjamin Moore. It is a warm white that makes a bathroom look fresh and clean without making it look too sterile.

For a slight pop of color against a white tiles bathroom try Gray Cashmere 2138-60 from Benjamin Moore. It looks sophisticated but still keeps the tone relaxing and calm.

Looking for a shade of blue or green? According to Improovy, Aegean Teal 2136-40 is a trendy bluish-green color that looks great on bathroom or kitchen cabinets. Similarly, Hale Navy (HC-154) looks great as a bathroom accent wall or as a backdrop to brass-colored fixtures or wood-toned vanities.

Talk to our team today if you have plans to transform your bathroom into a retreat or just want a facelift of the most used room in your home.