What Color Should I Paint My Closet? (Find Out Now!)

Tiffany Nichols
by Tiffany Nichols

Your room won’t be complete until the closet gets painted. But there are thousands of colors to consider. So, what color should you paint a closet, and why does it even matter? Here’s what you need to know.

Neutrals are the best colors for closets, small or large. But it all depends on the color of the surrounding walls. So, try to coordinate with your décor for maximum appeal. Then, cover each surface with a layer of your favorite paint.

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Do You Paint the Inside of a Closet?

You can and should paint the inside of your closet. That’s because leaving it bare can cause significant problems. Bare walls not only look bad but also invite pests. And they may not block moisture enough either.

Meanwhile, paint helps reduce moisture and can block bugs from getting inside your walls. Plus, painted closet walls can add to the aesthetic of your room. If the colors coordinate, it’s easier to create flow even in smaller spaces.

You can paint every surface of a closet that meets the eye. But it’s important to be cautious about areas that come in direct contact with your clothes. Places like the shelves and ceilings can be tricky to paint. So don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.

TIP: Use painter’s tape to line edges and create crisper lines. Remember to let the paint dry before removing it.

How to Paint a Closet Ceiling

Painting a closet ceiling isn’t always easy. Sometimes, you have to remove light fixtures and line crown molding with painter’s tape. Other times, you can slap on a quick layer of color and call it quits. It all depends on your closet’s design.

In general, always try to paint the ceiling last. That’s because it’s easy to slip when edging the space between the wall and ceiling. So, wait for the wall to dry and then cover the top afterward. Replace the trim at the end.

Keep in mind that closet ceilings are usually white or neutral to reflect more light. If you have mirrors in your closet, choosing the right color is even more critical. For the best results, select something that produces a soft tint and breaks up the space.

TIP: Carefully weigh the pros and cons of painting your ceiling the same color as the wall s.

Are Closets the Same Color as the Walls?

Closets don’t have to be the same color as walls. You can transform them into their own unique space. However, most interior designers try to coordinate a closet’s paint with the rest of the room. The choice is yours either way.

For example, choose grays, taupes, and pastels if your room is white. But feel free to branch out to brighter colors if it enhances your space. There are few rules when it comes to painting closets. So, make yours one of a kind.

Remember that neutral colors often go the longest way. They coordinate well with most other shades, for one. Plus, you can swap the décor for something new without having to repaint the entire space. Meanwhile, vivid colors are better for creating themes.

TIP: Check out Inspired Closets for motivation and creative ideas on how to decorate your personal storage spaces.

What Paint Colors Are Best for Closets?

No rule says you have to paint your closet a specific color. However, you have to consider the dimensions and layout before you begin. Closets with lots of storage shelves, cubbies, and cabinets may be more challenging to cover.

Also, do a spot test to determine how a color will look next to the natural light in your room. Pay attention to how much darker or lighter paint becomes when it dries. Some varieties may require more coats to cover the walls. Thus, the outcome may end up darker than you expected.

The correct color for closets depends on several factors, including how ample the space is. So, let’s compare small and large closets side by side:

Small Closets

Small closet spaces are more common than you think. Most mid-century homes feature closets that are between 10 and 20 square feet. That means you should paint small closets lighter colors to keep them from appearing too tiny. Here are a few shades for inspiration:

  • White
  • Pale Yellow
  • Pastel Green
  • Lilac
  • Khaki
  • Beige
  • Smoky Gray
  • Peach
  • Mint
To make your closet paint pop in a small space, add some colorful accents and hang trim with crisp white paint.

Large Closets

Large closets are rare, so they’re a prize. That means you probably want yours to look amazing. And you can paint large closets darker colors because the space isn’t at such a premium. Here are some inspirational examples:

  • Royal Blue
  • Coral
  • Kelly Green
  • Navy
  • Purple
  • Red
  • Bright Yellow
  • Orange
  • Charcoal

Bring out the best in your vivid paint colors with muted accessories and bright white trim.

Get help from an interior decorator if you still can’t decide on the right color for your closet. And check out a color wheel to determine the best complementary shades. Have more questions? Compare paint samples from your local hardware store. You can usually get them for free.

5 Pro Tips for Painting Closets

You can paint your closet like a pro, and you don’t even need special skills to do it. As long as you have the right tools, painting walls and ceilings can be relatively simple. And this is all you have to do for the best possible outcomes:

#1. Use High-Quality Paints with Excellent Coverage

Low-quality interior paint may cost less, but it covers less as well. You may even end up using more paint to cover the same space. Those extra layers could cost you the same in the end. Plus, more layers might also mess up the final color of your walls.

#2. Remove Shelves and Drawers Ahead of Time

Don’t try to paint around shelves, doorknobs, light fixtures, and switches. Instead, remove loose objects from your closet before painting. Doing so will give you more access to tight spaces. And it won’t put your wardrobe in jeopardy either.

#3. Choose Darker or Lighter Shades of Your Favorite Color

If the color you prefer doesn’t look good with the rest of your room, consider the alternatives. You can choose a lighter or darker shade of the same color and produce a different aesthetic. So, play with the color wheel to determine the best combinations.

#4. Apply a Primer Before Covering Walls and Shelves

Primer can help fill up those tiny holes in your wall’s surface. And flat surfaces can help your paint go further. Buy paint and primer in one to save time and money. But don’t forget to check the quality of the color because that still matters.

#5. Don’t Apply a Second Coat Until the First One Dries

Watching paint dry is no fun, but it’s necessary. Wait for the first layer of paint to dry completely before doing a second coat. If you get too impatient, your second coat could lift the color underneath. Then, lifting requires sanding and repainting to make it flat again.

For more tips on coloring your walls like an expert, reach out to a professional painter or talk to an interior designer. You don’t have to make your space look like everyone else’s, either. Now is your chance to be creative.

Related Questions

How Long Does It Take to Paint a Closet?

People paint closets at different speeds. Plus, paints dry at different rates, and the size of the closet matters as well. On average, though, you can realistically cover a small space in less than a day. Larger rooms may require several more hours because of the many layers.

How Can I Paint My Closet Fast?

It may not be a good idea to paint your closet quickly. That’s because the paint needs adequate time to dry. However, you can save time by using higher-quality paints. And get the job done even faster with a paint sprayer if you have one.

How Much Does It Cost to Paint a Small Closet?

The price of coloring a small closet can vary depending on several factors, including the cost of the paint. Whether you choose paint brushes or rollers matters as well. Usually, you can paint a tiny space for less than $100. But hiring a professional can cost $200-$500.

Is There a Specific Type of Paint Required for Closets?

You can use any interior paint to cover the walls of your closet. However, it may be best to use color and primer in one to save time and money.

Make Your Closet an Expression of Great Taste

The color of your closet may be more important than you think. So, don’t let it go unnoticed. Make it an extension of your great taste with a paint color that captures attention but blends with the space.

Do You Need to Hire a Paint Contractor?

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Tiffany Nichols
Tiffany Nichols

Tiffany Nichols specializes in aesthetics, design, marketing, and manufacturing. She's a copywriter and editor for several home renovation companies in the U.S. and works alongside some of the biggest names in the industry. Her hobbies include architecture, art, mental health, and fashion.

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