10 Ways Choosing a Paint Color is Like Choosing a Partner

The paint department is perhaps the only place in life where a genuine rainbow of possibility awaits. You’re drawn to the pretty colors and hypnotized by the prism of chromatic variation and paint knows it; that’s how it sucks you in.

But all the pretty, pretty colors harbor a dark and callous secret: Paint can be a fickle pigment of lies.

We’ve all been there, hunting and pecking in paint chip wonderland, when suddenly everything we thought we knew about something as simple as the color white comes into question. Who knew there were so many shades? When, how, and why did the color white become the greatest abstruse conundrum of the 21st century? And white is only the beginning.

Should you decide to use color to convey a feeling, you’ll spend a cool fortune on paint samples, eventually settle on a color, paint an entire room, hate it and then curse the Titanium dioxide it’s made with…or so I hear.

  • Paint vs. Partner 1 of 11

    Ultimately, the paint color you select represents an investment of time, money, and emotional energy. Hmm, doesn't sound so different that choosing a mate, now does it? Click on to read about the eerie similarities between love and paint.

  • Everlasting love? 2 of 11
    photo (136)

    In love: Sure this person is great now, but will they be the right match for you in the future? Will still not mind driving them around a year from now because of their lack of transportation and employment? When you're ready to start a family, will they be a great parent, or just another kid to take care of?


    In paint: Valspar Shoreline 3006-6B (pictured) was everything it promised to be with its buttery beachy feel, but we didn't find everlasting love. We couldn't even hang with it a full 24 hours before we were back in the paint department starting from scratch.

  • Does it make you look good? 3 of 11
    photo (137)

    In love: No, I'm not talking arm candy. Does your partner bring out the best in you? Have the people in your circle noticed a positive change in you as a result of this person? These are all good signs that you've found a keeper!


    In paint: Yes, I'm talking wall candy. Does this paint color complement your room, the rest of your home, your vision and the vibe you were trying to create? If the answer is yes, then you've found the right match!

  • Does it go on too thick or can you see right through it? 4 of 11
    photo (134)

    In love: A first date that says anything along the lines of, "Your eyes are like the deepest blue ocean/I can see myself sharing a life with you/I just moved back in with my mom - just temporarily," is a date who lays it on way too thick and yet transparent at the same time.


    In paint: There will be colors that dry too dark and paint formulas that provide insufficient coverage.

  • How do you feel? 5 of 11
    photo (141)

    In love: If the person you're sharing your time and your heart with makes you feel good. Then it's right.


    In paint: If you smile every time you enter the painted room, regardless of lighting, you've chosen well.

  • Want to change something? 6 of 11
    photo (132)

    In love: When you love someone, you love all of them - even the ugly bits. The goal is finding a mate you don't want to change too much. *wink*


    In paint: If you don't like one color you have the freedom to choose another, and another, and... There's a big rainbow out there, friends.

  • Do family and friends approve? 7 of 11
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    In love: When family and friends unanimously agree that person care for isn't right for you, it hurts. And while sometimes these people are wrong, they have your best interest at heart.


    In paint: When I threw Valspar Artichoke 6003-2A (pictured) up on my family room wall with gusto, my friends and family were like, "Mmmkay..." As it turns out, they were right. While not everyone has great taste, they can't all be wrong.

  • Is it trying too hard? 8 of 11
    photo (139)

    In love: You shouldn't be with a person who always seems to be trying too hard. Because chances are they're either insecure and/or thinking you're not trying hard enough.


    In paint: In the words of my husband, "Dude, it's not rocket science, it's paint." I happen to think paint is much more than that, but yes, when in doubt a solid neutral never tries too hard and always works.

  • Reliability factor 9 of 11
    photo (140)

    In love: Choosing a dependable partner matters more than just about anything. Loyal, reliable characters are there when you need them, there when you don't, and available to lend a helping hand.


    In paint: When you find a color that's true to the paint chip and sample, and somehow manages to maintain its color profile in all different, you've found a winner. We're loving Valspar Epic 6008-3C (pictured) because it does all of those things and so much more.

  • Sometimes even a sample is too much 10 of 11
    photo (144)

    In love: So you gave this person a shot by going out on a date. And so OK, you sampled the merch and wasn't impressed. Time to move on.


    In paint: If you open a sample paint jar, dip your paintbrush, begin to paint a swatch and stop in disdain mid-stroke, an 8oz sample of paint is way more than you'll ever need.

  • Is there something that just "isn’t quite right"? 11 of 11
    photo (133)

    In love: If the person you're seeing seems perfect but there's just something about them that isn't quite right, it's a total red flag. Never doubt that little voice; it knows more than we give it credit for.


    In paint: Never paint a wall, feel like there's something that's off about the color, and keep painting. Nor should you only love a paint color at specific specific times of day due to lighting. You deserve to love your paint color all the time.


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