Should I Paint My Ceilings the Same Color as My Walls?

Should I Paint My Ceilings the Same Color as My Walls?

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Should I Paint My Ceilings the Same Color as My Walls?

Family room with stone fireplace

While it may be easier to paint your ceilings the same color as your walls, but is it the right choice? There are many factors that go into making this decision. In this post we will examine some of those to help you make that call.

When new homes are built they usually paint the ceilings and walls the same color throughout the entire home. It is faster, cheaper and easier for the painters to do. They don’t have to worry about creating straight lines between different colors, additional masking and  changing out the paint in their sprayer. This is why it is so popular in recently built homes.

Rooms with tall vaulted white ceilings can make the space feel cold and bare. To “shrink” this space you can paint the ceilings two to three shades darker than the walls. This will help in making the ceiling appear lower and cozier. Rooms that are smaller or have lower ceilings benefit from lighter colored ceilings. This is also true in rooms where there is little natural light. Choosing a paint color two to three shades lighter than the wall will make the room feel less claustrophobic and dreary.  An easy way to create a ceiling color that goes with your wall colors is to dilute the wall color by 80 percent so it becomes the lighter shade of your wall paint.

Which white is right? A cleaner true white will provide a clean and crisp  look against darker and boldly colored walls. This look creates more of a “pop” and a cooler feel. Cooler whites will have undertones of grey and blue, while warmer shades of white will have undertones of yellow and green. Warmer whites appear darker and cooler whites will be whiter. The warmer or cooler white you choose will be influenced by your wall color and its temperature. You want them to be in harmony for a cohesive look and feel.

Lighting is another factor you need to consider. How much natural light does the room get? What type of lights are you using: cooler, cleaner and crisp light of a LED or the warmer and yellow light of an incandescent light. The lighting should be in sync with your color choices as far as the warmer or cooler look  you are trying to achieve. As stated earlier the less natural light the space receives the lighter shades of color will help in creating a more inviting room.

The uniform look creates a more intimate space in larger rooms that have higher ceilings . Light and neutral colors, such as a soft beige, off-whites and light grays look good if you want a monochromatic effect. If you want darker colors and shades make sure your room has abundant natural light to avoid the “cave look”. A uniform appearance will encase a room which will allow you to add colorful contrasts with your personal furnishings. In Billings where we have influences of the Rimrocks and western decor and architecture where the softer beiges are a great choice. They are nice against darker flooring and stained trim creating a cozier environment.

If trying to decide on colors or paint your ceilings becomes too much of a “pain” for you. Give me a call (406) 697-5135  so I can take the “pain” out of painting for you. Your neck will thank you.


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