This device is seriously a game-changer for everyone from interior designers to first-time DIYers. I even matched a color from my plant!

By Madison Alcedo
June 06, 2019
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When it comes to selecting the perfect paint color for your home, there are many factors to consider first before finding the best happiness-inducing hues. No matter what room in your home you’ve decided to paint (or repaint!), professionals would agree that there are certain criteria to stick to when choosing the perfect shade for every room in your house, including how much natural light there is, the size of the room, and what kind of mood you want to create for the area.

But anyone who has delved into redecorating any space—whether it’s a tiny bathroom or a huge, welcoming living room—knows that what goes on the walls, including the color, texture, or pattern, is one of the most important eye-catching features of a room. So when you first get that paint swatch book with hundreds of colors (who knew there were so many different shades of white paint?!), narrowing it down can be overwhelming.

If you’re like me, during certain times of my life, I tend to gravitate to different colors for both my clothes and my home—sort of like a personal palette. But when I can’t seem to pinpoint the exact paint color I want for a redecorating project, it can be frustrating. With what seems like new paint brands launching every day, the options for both the best paint brands and paint colors is practically endless. But since I recently discovered the Datacolor ColorReader color-matching tool on Amazon, I no longer have to worry about how I am going to perfectly match the shade of my favorite throw pillow to my new bedroom wall color.

If you come across anything that inspires you color-wise—from magazines, furniture, or clothes to Instagram posts or painted street murals while traveling—you can scan the area with the Datacolor ColorReader, and the exact paint color with its name and brand appears on its corresponding smartphone app. Or if you need to touch up a wall that you painted years ago and are out of the specific shade (or don’t remember its name), the ColorReader can help you find the next best match so that you can finally patch up those spots your kids colored on. It’s seriously a genius device and so easy to use—like the Shazam app of paint.

The color reader itself looks almost like an old canister of photo film with a cap that hides a little glass lens that resembles a tiny magnifying glass. The rechargeable device is small enough (about three inches long) to carry while paint shopping. When you’re ready to match a color to paint, simply open the app and connect it via Bluetooth, place the device directly against the item of the color you want to match, and press the “read” button within the app. Within seconds, the app shows you three different paint options with the paint brand, name, and number. You’ll know it’s doing its color-reading magic when you see a small light blinking against the surface.

And if you prefer one paint brand to another, the device will give you several companies to choose from, including Ace Hardware’s two brands, Behr, Benjamin Moore, Cloverdale, Dryvit, Kelly-Moore, M.L. Campbell, Miller Paint, NCS, PPG, RAL, Sherwin Williams, True Value, and Valspar. You can even select which brands the color reading can be chosen from. Plus, within the app you have the ability to look at your color measuring history to keep track of all the different colors you’ve scanned—I’ve even matched a color from my houseplant! But what I think is the best part about the app is that you can organize all of your colors by creating your own color palettes so you can see how the different paint hues would look together in a room.

Thanks to the innovative ColorReader device, you’ll have hundreds of paint colors literally in the palm of your hand without even having to go to a store for paint samples! It’s truly a game-changer for both experienced designers and beginner painters.

Datacolor ColorReader

To buy: $99; amazon.com.