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Black Kitchen Cabinets: A Good or Bad Idea?

5 reasons why it might not be the best idea

By Blake Lockwood | Curated by Blake Lockwood | Reviewed by Blake Lockwood

Blake Lockwood, the seasoned interior designer behind Decor Snob, has made a name for himself with over 30 years of industry experience. As a member of esteemed associations such as the NCIDQ, CIDA, NAAB, and CCIDC, he upholds high standards in his work.  His content is always people-first, reliable, and engaging.

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There are many colors that you can choose to paint your kitchen cabinets. One color that seems to be doing well and making a statement is black on the cabinets. This is a daring choice and there are many benefits, and some negatives, to going with such a dark and bold color for your kitchen.

So what are the are positives and negatives to choosing to paint your kitchen cabinets black?

The benefits of black kitchen cabinets:

  • They make the room look sophisticated
  • They hide the stains and scratches
  • They provide color contrast
  • They can highlight and pop other colors in the room.

The negatives black on the kitchen cabinets: 

  • They are hard to clean
  • They don’t work well on their own without some other bold color choices
  • They can be susceptible to showing scratches.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the benefits of painting your kitchen cabinets black so you can make the best decision possible.

The Pros of Black Kitchen Cabinets.

One of the best benefits that you will see when you paint the kitchen cabinets black is that they are comfy and cozy compared to some of the other styles that you can choose. This is a great characteristic to add to your home, though it will take some time to accomplish. Some of the benefits of using black on your kitchen cabinets include:

Adds Sophistication

Along with the feeling of being cozy, these black cabinets are going to add some class and sophistication into your home.


When it is paired with some other colors like pale gray or off-white, these cabinets are going to provide you with the elegance that you need for a kitchen to feel inviting. If you are going for a modern and updated look in the kitchen, then this is a great color choice to choose.

Hides the Stains and Scratches

Your kitchen is an area that is going to get messy and be hard to keep clean all the time, especially if you have some smaller children.

hides scratches

When you decide to paint them black, they will not show the wear and tear as much as before. This can help the kitchen look better, almost like new, even if there are some bangs and stains that happen in that area.

Light Contrast

If you are trying to do some renovations on the kitchen, contrast is going to be a point of concern.


You will need to combine the right colors and elements to make the right balance in the whole room. Black cabinets are going to help you pair several elements and colors together. A current trend is to pair them with white cabinets. Use White cabinets on top, and black on the bottom.


This makes it easier for you to achieve the most in kitchen sophistication in no time. Add in the right accessories to help with this as well.

The Best Color Highlights

If you are going with an all-white kitchen or a monochrome through the house, then adding a bit of personality is possible with a bold color like black.


Kitchen cabinets that are black will add that flair while maintaining some of the class that you want.

The Cons of Black Kitchen Cabinets.

While there are some benefits to painting or installing black cabinets in your kitchen, there are also some reasons why this is a bad idea and that all homeowners are jumping on the bandwagon and doing it right away. Some of the cons of having black kitchen cabinets include:

The Cleaning

You will quickly start to notice that black cabinets are hard to clean and you will need to do it all the time.


They may not show some of the dirt like lighter colors, but they will get lots of water splatters, dust, and food particles. You will see these on the cabinets and will need to update it to make the area look nicer.

They Don’t Work on Their Own

To make this look work in your kitchen, you will need to make sure that they are paired with some bright features.


Dark colors do not do a good job on their own, and you must pick out some brightness in the décor and the hardware to help with this. Dark colors can also make everything else look small, so you must open the space up with some accent lights to see the best results.

The Scratches

While the black paint will help to hide some of the scratches that are already on your cabinets, they are going to be more susceptible to getting scratches and showing all of the fingerprints that happen.


You will need to worry about lots of frequent cleaning to help them look good and you will likely need to add more paint coats the longer that the paint is on the cabinets. Decide if you have the time or patients to deal with all that cleaning.

Choosing to paint Your Kitchen Cabinets Black

Changing your kitchen cabinets to be a black color can be a daring and bold choice. This dark color is hard to change back from and can really change up the way that the cabinets look.

When you want a bold look that is going to make a statement, it can be the right decision. This does not mean it is the right decision for everyone. Take a look at some of the benefits and the negatives to see whether this is a good option for you.

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