5 colors you should never paint your kitchen – according to experts

They’re the colors you should never paint your kitchen in, say the gurus. Will you avoid these popular hues?

kitchen with green cabinets and island, black worksurface, brass globe lights and patterned blinds
(Image credit: Brent Darby)

Choosing the right kitchen color can feel like a tough decision. The tones you choose will likely be a part of your home for several years – meaning you need to find something modern enough to stay in style, but timeless enough to avoid feeling outdated in the seasons to come. 

And while paint choices are important in every room of your home, it can be harder, as well as more time-consuming and expensive, to adapt your kitchen color ideas once you’ve made your choice for the room. 

But which are the hues the experts say don’t make the grade? This is what you need to know.

5 colors you should never paint your kitchen 

It’s no secret that white, neutral, and green kitchen ideas have made waves across the design industry in recent months. However, these tones may have seen their day, color experts say. Here are the shades they’re avoiding in 2022. 

1. Red 

Breakfast bar in kitchen with coloured floor tiles, black units and terracotta walls.

(Image credit: Michael Sinclair)

Red has always felt like something of a controversial choice in the kitchen, so it is perhaps unsurprising that Valspar’s senior brand manager, Tobie Lewis, warns against this paint idea

‘Something to be careful about would be painting large areas of your kitchen red. The kitchen is a space where you should unwind and relax while cooking, eating, or hosting your friends. For many, the color red is powerful and too distracting for this specific room,’ Tobie says. 

Therefore, despite its reputed ability to enhance your senses (and potentially make your food taste better), for many this passionate shade is best served up outside the kitchen. 

2. Bright white 

White kitchen with cladding and vaulted ceiling and island with bar stools in Cornish coastal newbuild

(Image credit: Dan Duchars)

The concept of all-white kitchens sparked a debate as one of the kitchen trends to avoid, and bright white, even in moderation, has fallen out of favor amongst designers. ‘White kitchens are classic, but a bright white tends to feel stark or clinical,’ says Liberty Riggs, a designer from Studio Riggs

If you still want to incorporate white kitchen ideas into your home, Liberty recommends opting for a ‘creamy white or even a mushroom tone, which will feel much warmer and inviting’.

3. Yellow 

Yellow kitchen with hanging blue light fixtures

(Image credit: Future / Mark Bolton)

‘When painting your kitchen, the one color I always avoid is bright yellow,’ says Amy Youngblood, owner of Amy Youngblood Interiors. The expert suggests that this fluorescent shade detracts from the other beautiful items you may have in your kitchen, such as your countertops or lighting fixtures. 

‘You really want your kitchen to be a place of enjoyment and peace. There is already enough going on in your kitchen, and you certainly don’t need a feeling of chaos,’ she adds. 

4. Beige  

kitchen worktop inspired by south of France, breakfast preparation

(Image credit: Emma Lee / Twig Hutchinson)

While beige can feel like a safe choice that will stand the test of time, the president of Sharper Impressions Painting, Geoff Sharp, warns that it could leave your kitchen looking boring and lifeless. ‘Beige is often bland and has a safe and conservative feel to it,’ Geoff says. He suggests that you opt for a riskier but stylish shade that makes you happy while making your kitchen pop.

5. Dark green

Green kitchen with windowseat and island

(Image credit: Future/ Brent Darby)

Whilst the look of your kitchen is always a priority, Manhattan-based real estate professional Parisa M. Afkhami of Coldwell Banker Warburg warns that some shades can impact your house value. 

Amongst the most prominent of these is dark green. ‘Colors to absolutely be avoided are darker colors and shades of green, blue, red, and purple, which will cast a shadow on food and darken the space. Green and orange, in particular, should be avoided in kitchens,’ she warns. 

So, if you’re thinking of selling your home with a dark green kitchen, you may want to re-evaluate your painted kitchen ideas pronto. 

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.