These 2023 Stain Colors of the Year Mimic a Recent Fashion Trend

Brown is the new neutral.

It's not unusual for home design trends to mimic or align with fashion trends. For example, the coastal grandmother and cottagecore aesthetics have influenced increased interest in corresponding home aesthetics, like English country kitchens. Curvy, bulbous furniture trends have also aligned with the introduction of more playful, cartoonish clothing styles (think: those big red boots and what one TikTok-er cleverly identified as the "puffification" of fashion.) Another recent fashion trend that seems to be claiming a stake in home design: the color brown.

Several paint and stain trends have recently announced their 2023 stain colors of the year, and the color brown is a common denominator. While, yes, shades of brown are pretty typical for wood stains, these select stains are all similarly rich, deep, and statement-making browns. Over the past couple years, brown has become a much more common neutral in the fashion world (Vogue even declared it "the new black"), so it's not a surprise that design trends would follow suit—especially as warmer, cozy interiors are becoming top priority.

The rich brown stains selected for 2023 could also reflect the resurgence of 1970s interior design trends and the shift away from more cool-toned minimalist spaces, which often feature lighter woods and finishes. The use of deep brown tones and dark wood can create a comforting, retro feel—and can be used to make brighter colors pop, or paired with other neutrals for a more relaxed environment.

Below, find out more about the 2023 stain colors of the year from BEHR, PPG, and Minwax—and shop brown home decor to follow the trend.


dining room with wood paneled walls


Minwax's 2023 Color of the Year is Aged Barrel, a semi-transparent interior stain. The brand's inspiration photos dive straight into a 1970s retro aesthetic, featuring the stain used on wood-paneled walls and paired with rusty oranges and earthy greens.

Behr: Cordovan Brown

brown-stained back deck


Cordovan Brown is Behr's first-ever Exterior Stain Color of the Year. It's a deep, rich shade that's available in a solid color stain, as pictured above, or a semi-transparent stain, which allows the wood grain to show through. The stain is also intended to pair well with Behr's 2023 Color of the Year, Blank Canvas, a soft, warm white.

PPG: Chestnut Brown

stained wooden deck with dog laying down


PPG's pick for 2023 Stain Color of the Year, Chestnut Brown, is also an exterior stain, in a warm, rich tone. "Balancing between retro and elegant, this rich color complements trends of warm minimalism and earthy hues and can be used to help homeowners create an aesthetic that is on-trend with popular design styles," the press release states.

Brown Home Decor

Wooden Mini Vase

wooden vase

Price at time of publish: $13

Terrain Bronze Brown Velvet Sofa

brown velvet sofa

Price at time of publish: $1,999

Walker Checkered Wine Shag Area Rug

Brown checkered rug

Price at time of publish: $166

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