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8 Best Colors to Paint Ceiling Beams

You might think that choosing a paint color for your ceiling beams seems like a no-brainer, but picking the correct shade and paint color to complement the interior design can become daunting when you don’t know where to start.

We’ve put together the fundamentals of choosing the right paint color for your ceiling beams to make the indoor space feel cozy and vibrant.

Ceiling beams can be painted in various colors to make them stand out or be barely noticeable. It all depends on the interior design.

The most common colors used to paint are white, off-white, and gray, whereas beams made of natural materials like wood don’t require painting because of their natural wood stains, textures, and patterns.

Factors You Need To Consider To Achieve Effective Results

1. Establish Your Goals

Whether it’s your living room, dining room, or any other living space, the ultimate goal of painting your ceiling beams is to improve the aesthetics and accentuate the architecture. For example, using complementary colors would work best if you want to highlight the beams and make a style statement.

Choose the right complementary paint color combination and test your pick to ensure the indoor space looks cohesive.

2. Ceiling Height

High ceilings make your room or any indoor area feel spacious, but having them too high can make the space feel cold. Choose a dark paint color for high ceilings to make the ceiling appear lower than its actual height.

Typically, painting the beams black makes the room feel smaller. If you prefer a lighter shade, you can go with any neutral color in contrast to the wall paint and furniture.

3. Room Size

The paint color can change the room’s feel. Dark and neutral paint colors are ideal for big rooms, whereas using contrast colors for ceilings and beams creates a  spacious indoor feel.

4. Type Of Indoor Space

Type Of Indoor Space

The type of space also matters when picking the paint. For example, a living room with joists would feel different from a nursery with visible ceiling beams.

When choosing a color, it’s best to visualize how well a color may look when the beams are painted.

5. The Paint Finish

Choosing the right paint finish is as crucial as picking the paint color. The type of finish you pick depends on the interior design.

Therefore, pick wisely between a glossy and a matt finish according to the indoor architecture and design.

6. The Interior Styling

The ceilings, beams, and floor don’t need to match in color. Matching the exact colors can sometimes lead to an unappealing outlook.

For instance, when you have a dark floor, painting dark beams to match the precise color will create a negative appearance, making the space look awkward.

The best approach is to choose the undertones that are in contrast but don’t cancel each other out.

7. The Paint Quality

Whether you’ve installed a new ceiling or are repainting old ceiling beams after a home renovation, choosing the best quality paint is imperative.

The color may be more expensive than its counterparts, but it will save you money in the long run and provide the best results.

Cheaper paint is easily affected by changing weather conditions, making the ceiling look worn out more quickly. Most quality paints are durable, fade-resistant, and washable, making it a breeze to clean the roof without worrying about chipping the paint.

Popular Paint Colors For Ceiling Beams

Now that we’ve covered the factors to consider before choosing a paint color. Let’s dig into the different colors used to paint ceiling beams.

1. White


Painting the beams and ceiling white will make introducing bright colors into the interior design easier without looking awkward. This color is one of the most popular choices due to its ability to blend with almost every shade.

If you’re looking for a classy color that transcends time and trends, white color is the go-to choice. Whether you have high or low vaulted beams, painting them white will brighten the space and enhance its vibrancy.

2. Black

It is tricky to integrate black color indoors. Dark neutral colors like black can make the room feel smaller and the ceiling lower than it is, resulting in a feeling of a crowded space.

The color is ideally used to paint spacious rooms with high ceilings. Rather than going all-black on the roofs and beams, opt for a minimalist approach and paint the ceiling white while painting the beams with a matt or semi-gloss black paint.

3. Grey

Want your room to feel light and airy? Consider painting the beams light gray. This color also compliments white ceilings, improving the overall look. When you don’t want to use sharp contrasts, choose grey, as this neutral color fits perfectly with several other colors.

Painting the beams grey on a wooden rafter improves the visual appeal, complimenting the wooden tones and mineral streaks.

4. Green

The green color is an excellent pick to go with wooden beams. It’s the most prominent color of nature, bringing the outdoor vibe into the indoors by providing a refreshing outlook.

Some darker tones of green make a stark contrast when used with other colors. Therefore, consider choosing a green-grey color to make the green pop out. Several shades of green also work well with wooden beams or when creating a faux finish.

5. Blue


Already bored of seeing white ceilings add a vibrant touch to the beams by painting them blue. Whether you have a white ceiling or wooden beams, the blue color goes well in each scenario.

Several tones are available, making it easier to tweak the indoors according to your preferences. For example, painting them dark blue can provide the desired results if you want to add a nautical vibe to your grey ceilings.

Likewise, light-colored ceilings or walls go well with the sky-blue shade.

6. Pale Yellow

While it may seem like a subdued shade, muted yellow brings brightness into virtually any space. The color pairs perfectly with neutral and light-shaded colors, giving the area a breezy appearance.

7. Dusty Rose

Dusty rose is the color to choose if you’re in for genuinely bright colors and an elegant vibe. The color is excellent for shared spaces like kitchens, dining rooms, and nurseries.

While bright pink is visually striking, dusty rose is pleasant to the eye and has soothing properties. Being a neutral color, dusty rose can be paired with several other contrasting colors for a subtle, airy, and floral feel.

8. Wood Color

Most wooden beams are not painted to preserve the natural appearance of the woodwork. Unpainted wooden beams provide a timeless outlook and elevate the aesthetics.

Opting for a faux finish would be great if you’ve recently moved to a house with already painted beams and want to tweak their appearance. This approach will save time by stripping the previous paint from the beams and providing striking visuals.

This finish gives the beams a natural wood appearance. You’ll have several variations, including light-colored, aged, dark-colored, or weathered looks. If you want to paint the beams yourself, here’s an overview.

  • Pick a base wood color of your preference.
  • Mix the wood color with glaze.
  • Spread the paint mix on the beams using a paintbrush.
  • To mimic a wooden pattern, use the wood-graining tool and comb it all over the beam. Let the paint dry, and you’ll have a mesmerizing wooden design.
  • Use a wood grain rocker to add faux wood knots to the beams.


1. How to Clean Ceiling Beams?

Cleaning the ceiling is essential to keep indoors tidy. If you’ve already used high-quality paint, you can wash the beams with water and a mild soap solution for effective results.

Wooden beams can be cleaned using natural materials like vinegar and water solution.

2. Should Ceilings Match The Floor?

An exact match is not necessary. Your goal should be to pick a color that harmonizes with your indoor space. For example, if you have a dark-colored floor, going for the exact color gives off a dark and congested space.

The best approach is to pick soft and pale tones, especially in areas with a small amount of natural light.

3. What to Choose Between Flat Or Semi-Gloss?

If you want to make your ceiling look prominent while improving its elegance, go with a semi-gloss or a high-gloss finish. You might have to search for quality paint with a gloss finish, as most colors come in a matt or flat finish.

Choosing a matt finish can give the beams a dull appearance when your indoor space is vivid and aesthetically appealing. You can use a semi-gloss finish on the shafts if your ceiling has a matt finish and vice versa.


The way a ceiling looks is just as important as any other part of any structure. Long gone are the days when you had to paint beams the exact color as your ceiling. Experimenting with colors that accent each other can give your home a striking aesthetic appeal.

When choosing a color, consider the room’s size, height, paint quality, and, most importantly, the theme or character you want to give to the space. As long as you keep these factors in check, your painting project will be a success.

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