Mound of wet yellow oil paint on a floor beside a paint tube.

11 Best Yellow Paint Colors for 2021

Originally contributed by Mackenzie Stratton • last updated 2/26/2021

Finding the best yellow paint colors is a notoriously tricky task because if you don’t identify the best hue for your space, it can register as over-stimulating. 

That said, this doesn’t mean you’re stuck with neutral yellows, either — a deep mustard or intense chartreuse still looks chic when done right. 

First, it’s important to pick your color palette, which should be based on a statement piece like artwork, a unique chair, or area rug. By choosing your color palette upfront, you can more artfully employ it so that one color isn’t overrepresented in your space. 

Second, think of what aesthetic you’re most drawn to. For example, if you like minimalism, you may be able to incorporate a rich yellow since you won’t be using many other elements that can overwhelm your design. Or, if you like a shabby-chic look, consider a muted yellow that will look well-worn and natural next to your other decor. 

This guide provides you with a lovely list of yellow paint colors so you can get a head-start on creating a space that feels like you.

01/11

Daybreak

This hue has cool undertones so if you prefer subtle yellow paint colors, opt for Daybreak by Sherwin-Williams. Though, of course, no one wants a room that feels blasé, so pair this neutral with decor that pops. You can mix patterns for an eclectic vibe like a classic Oushak rug and a herringbone pattern on your accent wall. The trick to mixing patterns is to use particular details from the busier one to choose the design of your simpler pattern.

02/11

Lantern Light

Lantern Light by Sherwin-Williams is a bit warmer than the former, but no less easy to complement. When composing your color palette, it’s important that you don’t start with your paint colors — there are simply too many to choose from and you’ll end up doubting yourself. So think of your palette in more general terms, anchoring it with your chosen motif and using a pro color guide to steer you.

03/11

Pineapple Smoothy

The best yellow paint colors imbue a space with a unique yet understated style. To this end, Pineapple Smoothy by Benjamin Moore would incorporate well with Braquenié design, which emphasizes the lavish patterns popular in France during its Second Empire with more organic and geometric lines. Because Braquenié is influenced by several styles, you can easily tip the aesthetic of your room to look more ornate or more clean, depending on what you like best.

04/11

Fun Yellow

Design should be about expressing yourself and enjoying the process, and Fun Yellow by Sherwin-Williams is a good reminder of that. Its neutral undertones are great for making a room feel light and airy, so it’s a good choice for those who want to use warm colors in small spaces. Create an enchanted and whimsical vibe by incorporating delicate lighting, a canopy-style bed frame, or hanging plants.

05/11

Delightful Yellow

Delightful Yellow by Benjamin Moore is unmistakably, well, yellow. That said, its undertones are a touch cool so it won’t overwhelm your space. To create visual harmony in your home, imagine it as a single piece of artwork. For example, if you paint your walls yellow, carry over a similar hue to the upholstery in your next room. Using this technique also streamlines your design process, since picking a color palette can be time-intensive.

06/11

 Rayo de Sol

Yellow paint colors make a space come alive and a hue like Rayo de Sol by Sherwin-Williams is no exception. Its vibrant, saturated tone is perfect to incorporate into a Hacienda aesthetic, a fusion between Spanish and Mexican sensibilities. To achieve this look, create a rich, warm color palette and consider decor like patterned tile, earthenware pots, exposed beam ceilings, and plenty of houseplants like palms and agave. 

07/11

Glitzy Gold

Glitzy Gold by Sherwin-Williams is an intense yet chic hue that you can take in many directions. For example, you could make this your principal color and rely on neutrals, patterns, and textures to tie the rest of your design together. Or you could draw inspiration from any one of these color palettes, which toggle between warm and cool accompanying tones.

08/11

Cork

This subdued hue gives off an updated, easy vibe that’s perfect for pairing with natural materials like leather, suede, and linen. You can apply a color like Cork by Benjamin Moore to your accent wall and then arrange woven baskets on it, too. By doing this, you’ll create a sense of depth, since both the wall and the baskets are similar in color, but different in texture.  

09/11

Medieval Gold

Medieval Gold by Benjamin Moore is one of the best yellow paint colors because its neutral undertones makes it easy for you to set either a warm or cool tone in your space, depending on your decor. Its rich hue allows you to create a chic, color-washed effect without it getting lost on your walls, and it makes for a dramatic backdrop for wall art. Try repeating a motif, like mirrors or picture frames, for an offbeat and eclectic look.

10/11

Chartreuse

Chartreuse is one of many yellow paint colors you can use to create a funky, minimalist aesthetic. If you opt for a subtle hue like Chartreuse by Sherwin-Williams, you’ll still have the flexibility to make a bolder statement with your decor. For example, you could lay down an abstract rug and then paint your accent wall in a similar design. Just make sure you’re not too literal with it — by taking only a section of a design and repeating it elsewhere, you’ll create a more sophisticated impression.

11/11

Citronella

Citronella by Sherwin-Williams is intense but steers clear from being gaudy. It’s beautifully balanced by warm hues of gray, desaturated teals, and muted pinks. This color has a modern vibe, which you can either run with or offset with classic design elements, like a Persian rug or furniture with claw feet and ornamental touches. 

beta