In the wake of a grueling year, Benjamin Moore has designated a soothing, comfortable teal as its next official color of 2021

  • Benjamin Moore's official color of 2021 is a blue-green-grey blend called "Aegean Teal."
  • On Wednesday, the company announced that it had selected the shade in January 2020, before COVID-19 morphed into a pandemic.
  • Benjamin Moore's color experts described the tone as "sunbaked" and "versatile," perfect for kitchens.
  • The teal color's homeyness and warmth makes it the perfect shade for homebound consumers during a time of great uncertainty.  
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If 2020 was a color, the year would be epitomized by dark shades of gray and brown. But looking forward to next year, it's a blue-green-grey blend of teal that paint company Benjamin Moore has selected as its official color of 2021.

The color "Aegean Teal" is a blend of blue and green, with grey undertones. In Benjamin Moore's color catalogue, it is described as an "intriguing midtone that creates natural harmony." The company's Director of Color Marketing Andrea Magno and Color and Design Manager Hannah Yeo announced the new color on a video conference call on Wednesday.

With the coronavirus pandemic trapping people around the world indoors, the paint company's team of color experts is hoping that consumers deploy the teal color to create a "sunbaked" and "organic" look in their living spaces, particularly kitchens. 

Benjamin Moore's official color of the year for 2020 was "First Light," described as "a soft, rosy hue blooming with potential." But "Aegean Teal" was actually selected as 2021's official color in December 2019, when team members became inspired by stories of organic shades found at farmer's markets and the belief that "the kitchen serves as a place of nourishment" and a center of community.

The warm hue also taps into a renewed focus on the home that many consumers are embracing during the pandemic. Home improvement retailers like Home Depot and Lowe's have seen stock price and sales soar as homebound consumers tinker with their living spaces. 

Read more: Bed Bath & Beyond had made a huge comeback amid the pandemic. Now the company's chief brand officer reveals how it plans to keep the momentum going.

Magno described the teal color as a "hidden gem" imbued with a "softened casual elegance that's really very inviting" for both color-lovers and those with a preference for neutrals.

"We fell in love with it for its complexity, its depth, and even its versatility in that you can use it in so many ways in the home," she said.

Magno and Yeo added that it is a happy coincidence that home-centric thinking ended up speaking to the current environment.

When it comes to design, paint colors have long been known to be more than just decorative. For exterior paint colors, houses painted a mix of grey and beige or a dark door often sell for thousands of dollars more than comparable houses without those colors. 

Painting walls a specific hue can also have a direct impact on mood. A 2018 study from the University of Bologna in Italy published in Frontiers in Psychology examined the experience of 443 Italian students living in six nearly-identical buildings that differed only in the interior paint color (violet, blue, green, yellow, orange, and red). The resulting survey of the students found that people tend to prefer blue, linking the color with "a calm mood."

Magno and Yeo also released a palette of shades to compliment the Aegean Teal color. Yeo said that the team selected shades that "enhance everything and let you celebrate the small moments."

They also noted that Aegean Teal is "versatile" when it comes to lighting, appearing cooler and more blue in the morning light, and growing warmer and greener in the afternoon sun.

"I personally love seeing the different iterations of that color throughout the day," Magno said. 

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