The muted green has a long history of wooing homeowners.


When you get to the near-halfway point in a year, color forecasts aren't something you expect to hear about too often. After all, experts long ago determined the year's haute hues, crowning shades from Sherwin-Williams' Urbane Bronze to Pantone's dual choice of Illuminating and Ultimate Gray, the perfect marriage of optimism and strength.

But recently, another shade caught the eye of Pantone—and they're declaring it back in a big way. According to Laurie Pressman, vice president of the color authority, sage has skyrocketed in popularity across social media lately. And if you consider the feelings evoked by the muted green, it makes a whole lot of sense considering the circumstances. "Sage has a soothing appeal that leaves us in a calm and meditative state," says Pressman. "It expresses a need for cooperation and collaboration, not surprising when people are separated literally and mentally."

Watch: 7 Paint Colors We're Loving for Kitchen Cabinets in 2021:

Earthy hues have understandably been a theme among color forecasters for the past year, from Behr's terracotta-like Canyon Dusk to Benjamin Moore's sea-inspired Aegean Teal. But sage in particular has a long history of wooing homeowners. According to Pantone, similar shades of green popped up in the '90s, when urban and suburban dwellers sought ways to reconnect with nature as an antidote to stressful times.

The color has had a renaissance within the past few years, with trend reports painting the serene green as a versatile hue you can splash anywhere. (We even declared it the "new neutral" in 2018.) While that still rings true, Sue Wadden, director of marketing at Sherwin-Williams, expects to see greens growing big in the kitchen specifically. "Lighter and more muted shades, like sage, create a calming and soothing effect, especially next to a classic white subway tile," she says. "A lighter tone also enables other surfaces to be the star, such as veined marble countertops and backsplashes."

Whether you choose to redo your kitchen, bedroom, or sunroom with sage, there's one thing we can probably all agree on: Anything that promotes calm in a post-2020 world is well worth a try.