What color compliments gray exterior?

Quick Answers

Gray is a versatile neutral color that can work well with many accent colors. Some popular color combinations that complement gray house exteriors include:

  • Blue – A crisp blue creates a soothing contrast against gray. Shades like navy, cobalt, or sky blue pop nicely.
  • White – White trim provides a clean, bright accent color for gray. It creates a modern, sophisticated look.
  • Red – For a bold, dramatic statement, bright red is a perfect match for gray. Try brick red, crimson, or burgundy tones.
  • Yellow – Warm yellows like buttercream or mustard inject energy and create an upbeat vibe against neutral gray.
  • Green – Earthy greens like sage, olive, or emerald green give off a natural, relaxing feel paired with gray.

When selecting an accent color, consider factors like the home’s architecture, your personal style, and the overall aesthetic you want to achieve. Combining gray with two accent colors can also create visual interest.

What Makes a Good Accent Color for Gray?

Certain qualities help accent colors stand out against gray and complement it well:

  • Contrast – Colors with a strong visual contrast like bright white or vivid red make the gray “pop.” Dark charcoal gray wears bold colors nicely.
  • Saturation – Highly saturated, intense shades (rather than muted or pale hues) hold their own against gray.
  • Temperature – Warm or cool accent colors both create appealing contrast against gray’s neutral temperature.
  • Personal Preference – Choose colors you’re naturally drawn to for an exterior you’ll love.

Avoid selecting an accent color that is too similar to the gray, as the two colors will blend together. While subtle, low-contrast combinations can work well inside, exteriors tend to look best with bolder color pairings.

Best Accent Colors for Different Gray Shades

The specific gray tone also impacts which accent colors look best:

Light Grays: Pair with deeper, richer colors like navy, black, crimson, dark green, or brown. Soft pastels also complement light gray nicely.

Medium Grays: Work well with brighter shades like cobalt, turquoise, purple, yellow, and soft orange.

Charcoal/Dark Grays: Pop with clean white or very bold colors like fuchsia, gold, lime green, or bright orange-red. Primary colors are ideal accents.

Accent Color Ideas for Specific Gray Shades

Gray Shade Complementary Accent Colors
Dove Gray Cobalt Blue, Buttery Yellow
Light French Gray Black, Crimson Red
Medium Gray Emerald Green, Violet
Charcoal Gray White, Gold

Tips for Combining Gray and Accent Colors

  • Use 60-70% gray as the dominant color, with 30-40% for the accent color(s). Too much accent color overwhelms the gray.
  • Add trim, shutters, fronts doors in accent colors against a gray exterior for a tailored look.
  • Paint the accent color on “architectural details” like columns, pediments, and molding to highlight features.
  • Use light gray on upper levels and charcoal gray on the foundation level for contrast.
  • Add brightly colored landscaping features like flower beds, pots, or front doors.
  • Use multiple accent colors in small doses (like on window boxes, columns, railings) for variety.
  • Select an accent color that ties in with interior colors for a cohesive scheme.

Pro tip: View color combination examples on homes in your area to see schemes that work well in local conditions. You can drive around for inspiration or look online at exterior home photo galleries.


Gray offers great styling flexibility as an exterior house color. From clean white to dramatic black, bold primary shades to muted pastels, gray pairs beautifully with a wide spectrum of accent colors. Consider the shade of gray, overall aesthetic, architectural details, and personal taste when selecting complementing accent colors. Thoughtfully combining gray with one or two accent hues creates curb appeal and a custom exterior color scheme you’ll love coming home to.