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What is the shade of beige color?

Beige is a neutral and versatile color that can work in many interior design schemes. But with so many shades of beige available, how do you choose the right one? This article will explore the different shades of beige and help you find the perfect tone for your space.

The Origins of Beige

The term “beige” came into use in the late 1800s and is derived from the French word for natural wool that has been neither bleached nor dyed. So beige is meant to mimic a natural, undyed color. This neutral tone provides the perfect backdrop for accent colors.

Beige sits between the lightness of white and the warmth of brown on the color wheel. It mixes in soft hints of cream, tan, and light brown. The versatility of beige comes from this gentle blend of undertones.

Different Tones of Beige

There are many shades of beige ranging from very light (almost white) to very dark (almost brown). Here are some of the most common tones:

  • Cream – The lightest tone of beige with more yellow/cream. Works well for airy, sunlit rooms.
  • Khaki – A light brownish beige with hints of green. Provides an earthy feel.
  • Oatmeal – A warm, reddish-brown type of beige. Feels cozy and inviting.
  • Taupe – A grayish shade of beige with subtle purple undertones.
  • Biscuit – A light brownish-yellow beige. Uplifting and bright.
  • Mushroom – A soft gray-beige. Creates a sophisticated look.
  • Fawn – A light brown with orange undertones. Feels natural and organic.
  • Buff – A yellow-brown shade. Warm and calming.
  • Khaki – A lighter shade of sand. Casual and laidback.

Choosing a Beige Shade

With so many options for beige shades, it can be difficult to select the right one for your needs. Here are some tips on choosing a tone of beige:

  • Decide what feeling or ambiance you want for the room. Creamy beiges feel airy and light. Reddish beiges are cozy and warm. Cool-toned beiges have an elegant vibe.
  • Look at the undertones. Beiges with yellow, red or gray undertones will pair well with those color schemes.
  • Consider the light. Dark beiges can feel oppressive in low light. Pale beiges show more flaws in bright light.
  • Sample different shades. Paint swatches on the wall to see effects in the room.
  • Coordinate with furnishings. Make sure beige complements wood tones and fabrics.
  • Use beige on larger surfaces. Utilize accent colors in accessories and furnishings.

Here is a table summarizing some popular beige shades and key features:

Beige Shade Undertones Features
Cream Yellow Airiness, brightness
Oatmeal Reddish Warmth, coziness
Mushroom Gray Sophistication, elegance
Khaki Green, brown Casual, earthy
Taupe Purple, gray Soothing, calming

Beige Color Schemes

Beige is endlessly versatile and can be paired with just about any color scheme and design style. Here are some popular beige color combinations:

  • Beige and blue – Creamy beiges complement airy blues in coastal, nautical, or cottage schemes. A soothing palette.
  • Beige and green – Earthy beiges work well with leafy greens and emeralds. Organic and harmonious.
  • Beige and violet – Soft taupes and lavenders create an elegant interior with a touch of femininity.
  • Beige and terracotta – Warm reddish browns and terra cottas feel comforting and rustic.
  • Beige and peach – Peaches and apricots pop against light beiges. Fresh and lively.
  • Beige and sage – Cool mushroom beiges complement refreshing sages. Relaxing and zen.
  • Beige and chocolate – Sophisticated combination ofcamel beiges with rich chocolates. Luxe and indulgent.
  • Beige and coral – Vibrant corals make a striking contrast against neutral beiges. Fun and energetic.

Beige can truly work with any color depending on the particular shade. Feel free to get creative with unique beige color pairings.

Using Beige in Interior Design

Now that you know how to select the perfect shade of beige, how do you effectively incorporate it into your home’s design?

Here are some tips for stylishly using beige in your interiors:

  • Use beige as a neutral base for bolder accent colors to pop against.
  • Paint large surfaces like walls, ceilings, and trims in beige to define spaces with a neutral backdrop.
  • Choose beige for big furniture pieces like sofas, beds, and wardrobes to anchor a room.
  • Weave in different beige tones throughout a home for visual interest.
  • Layer lighter and darker beiges together, like a pale beige sofa against a camel accent wall.
  • Pair beige walls with warm wood accents and furnishings for a natural look.
  • Contrast cool beige tones with bright whites for a clean, airy aesthetic.

However you choose to employ it, beige is a versatile color that provides the perfect neutral base for any design style. Have fun playing with different shades of beige and see what works best for your home!

Beige in Different Design Styles

While beige works well in any room, some shades are better suited for particular interior design aesthetics. Here is how beige fits into some popular design styles:

Beach House Style

Breezy cream beiges and oatmeals complement laidback beach house spaces. Use light beiges on walls or wicker furniture contrasted with white trim and pops of navy.

Modern Farmhouse

Warm beiges like buff, tan, and wheat complement farmhouse decor. Pair vintage wood tones with warm beige walls, cabinets, and linens.

Contemporary Style

Cooler beiges like mushroom, taupe, and gray beige work well in modern spaces. Combine with sleek lines and geometric shapes.

French Country

Soft vintage beiges like parchment and putty complement French country decor. Add architectural details like arched doors and warm wood accents.

Mid-Century Modern

Use earthy beiges like sand, khaki, and desert rose in mid-century interiors. Compliment with retro patterns and organic shapes.

Test out swatches of varying beige tones to find one that resonates with the style of your space.

Beige Paint Colors

When selecting a beige paint color, you’ll want to consider the undertones, as they can come across quite differently on the wall. Here are some popular beige paint colors along with their undertones:

Paint Color Undertones Brand
Accessible Beige Reddish Sherwin Williams
Shoji White Yellow Benjamin Moore
Gray Owl Purple gray Benjamin Moore
Balanced Beige Reddish Sherwin Williams
Light French Gray Lavender Sherwin Williams
Edgecomb Gray Green gray Benjamin Moore

When choosing a beige paint, select a few samples. Paint swatches on the wall in different light to see undertones and how the color changes. This will ensure you pick the perfect beige for your space.

Beige in Furniture

Beige is an extremely popular furniture color as it complements most wood tones and provides a neutral base. Here are some tips for using beige furniture:

  • Sofas or sectionals in beige can anchor a living room in a neutral backdrop for accent pillows.
  • Beige dining chairs allow the table and centerpiece to stand out.
  • A beige upholstered headboard provides a calming backdrop for a master bedroom.
  • Light beige cabinets keep a kitchen looking airy and spacious.
  • Distressed beige wood finishes add vintage charm to farmhouse decor.
  • Layer beige furniture in slightly different tones for visual interest.

Stick to large furniture pieces in beige and use accents of bolder colors for pillows, throws, and accessories to keep space uplifting.

Beige in Textiles

From bedding to rugs to curtains, beige offers a versatile neutral shade for all types of textiles. Some tips for incorporating beige textiles include:

  • Select light beige bedding that can be layered with patterned throws or duvet covers.
  • Hang semi-sheer beige curtains to filter in natural light during the day.
  • An oversized beige area rug can anchor a seating area while allowing flexibility in furniture.
  • Mix and match beige textiles in varying tones and textures for visual interest.
  • Use mushroom or gray beige for subtly patterned upholstery on benches, ottomans or headboards.

When using beige textiles, add contrast with complementary accent pillows and layered throws in bolder hues. This will keep the neutral beige from feeling flat.

Beige in Bathrooms

The soothing, light-reflecting properties of beige make it an ideal color for serene, spa-like bathrooms. Here are some ideas for gorgeous beige bathrooms:

  • Paint walls an airy cream beige and contrast with bright white trims for a light, open look.
  • Use light beige subway tiles on shower walls to bounce light around and create spaciousness.
  • Soak in relaxation with a beige freestanding tub as the focal point.
  • Tie in tones of mushroom beige on cabinets, towels and accessories for a refined look.
  • weave natural textures with beige tiles to create an earthy, organic vibe.

Let beige create a fresh, yet cozy backdrop for your bathroom. Punch it up with green plants, wood accents, and candles for a spa oasis.


With its versatile, neutral shade and variety of undertones, beige can work in any interior. Choosing the right tone comes down to the ambiance you want and color scheme. Use light beiges for airy spaces, warm beiges for cozy spaces, and cool beiges for sleek spaces. Then pull in accent colors to truly make beige shine.

So explore the many gorgeous shades of beige until you find your perfect neutral. Use it wisely as a foundational backdrop, and beige will let your personal style take center stage.