Most Timeless Hardwood Floor Color

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most timeless hardwood floor color

Hardwood flooring is a significant investment, which makes choosing a color that will stand the test of time pretty important.

But when it comes to timeless colors, there isn’t just one. 

For the most part, any natural color will work, and as long as you stay away from trends (like gray or white-washing), you’ll be okay.

Here are the most timeless hardwood floor colors to choose from.

Key Takeaways

There’s no ‘most’ timeless hardwood floor color – but the following shades are our favorites:

  • White Oak
  • Walnut
  • Hickory
  • White Maple
  • Cherry
  • Medium-Toned Oak
  • Ash
  • Brown Maple

Natural tones tend to resell well and will endure years of use as trends and tastes change. Avoid painted hardwood, white washes, grays, and very dark colors.

Top 8 Timeless Hardwood Floor Colors

White Oak

If you like light flooring, white oak is one of the best classic hardwood floors. It features colors ranging from light beige to brown. And while light flooring is trendy right now, natural white oak won’t be going out of style anytime soon.


If you prefer a mid to darker-toned floor, walnut is an excellent option. Walnut has deep rich browns with purple or red undertones. A natural walnut floor is classically beautiful and can make any room feel more luxurious.


Hickory floors have tones that range from light to dark. Because there are such variations in this flooring, it’s a timeless choice for rustic homes.

White Maple

While a light floor, white maple is a great neutral choice. It works well with just about any paint color. Plus, it’s durable and timeless.


Cherry flooring is known for its rich red undertones. While Brazilian cherry has come in and out of style over the past couple of decades, American cherry remains a classic.

While timeless, cherry floors aren’t for everyone. This style of flooring gives off a formal look.

Medium-Toned Oak Floors

An oak floor with a medium stain is a classic look that will never go out of style. A medium tone will go with all types of decor and will be an asset to your home if you ever decide to sell.


Ash is another lighter-toned floor with blonde to medium brown tones. But even though it’s light, it’s not so light that it falls into trendy territory.

Brown Maple

If you like the look of maple but want it a bit darker, try a brown maple. Brown maple is still a mid-tone color but much darker than white maple. It has soft pink undertones.

Advice from the Expert: Maintenance matters. When picking a color, also take into consideration the level of maintenance you are willing to pursue. Light-colored floors, such as white oak or light maple, can hide dust and scratches better than a darker shade like walnut or cherry. As an added bonus, lighter shades also tend to make a space feel larger and brighter, which can be especially beneficial in smaller rooms.

What Hardwood Floor Colors are Best for Resale?

what hardwood floor colors are best for resale
If you’re planning on selling your home soon, stay away from trends. The best floor colors for resale are natural tones. 

Unfortunately, it’s hard to stay on top of the one best color for resale because as trends change, so do the best color choices.

For example, dark and gray floors dominated design trends a few years ago. Now those colors are overpowered by light blonde and white-washed flooring.

As long as you stick with a natural tone, your hardwoods will be an asset and not a turn-off to potential buyers.

How Do You Choose New Flooring?

If you’re getting new flooring, go with a natural color for a timeless look. If you’re not sure if you should go light or dark, think about your room size and personal preferences. 

Advice from the Expert: The style of your home should play a big role in your color decision. Consider the overall look you want to achieve in your home. For instance, while a walnut or cherry floor could beautifully complement a traditional or rustic styled home, a white or light maple might be a better fit for more contemporary spaces. Remember, your hardwood floors are an investment that will last many years, so you want to ensure that they’ll match your style for the long haul.

Dark flooring can make a room look smaller but provides a beautiful contrast with a light shade of paint. On the other hand, light flooring can make a small room feel bigger.

Which Hardwood Floor Color is Timeless?

Almost all natural finishes are timeless. But if you want to play it extra safe, go for a mid-tone natural hardwood color. As long as you steer away from trends like painted hardwoods, grays, white-washing, and ultra-dark colors, your hardwood floors will never go out of style.

Advice from the Expert: Don’t forget about the finish! A crucial part of choosing your hardwood floor color is actually the finish you go with. Satin, semi-gloss, and high gloss can each give natural hardwood colors a completely different feel. For a truly timeless look, I usually recommend opting for a satin or semi-gloss finish, which can enhance the natural beauty of the wood without making it appear too shiny.

Frequently Asked Questions

faq most timeless hardwood floor color

Are dark hardwood floors classic?

Natural dark hardwood floors are classic, like walnut and dark hickory. However, dark hardwoods stained with an unnatural color like ebony or dark gray are trendy and will likely fall out of style.

What is a timeless laminate floor coloring?

If you’re looking for timeless laminate floor coloring, find one that mimics natural hardwood colors. Top contenders include white oak, medium oak colors, maple, walnut, and hickory.

Are gray floors going out of style?

Unfortunately, gray hardwood floors are going out of style. Instead, what’s popular now are more natural colors, predominantly super light ones. Gray tile, however, hasn’t seemed to lose popularity as quickly as gray hardwoods.

Final Thoughts

If you want a beautiful timeless hardwood floor color, go with something natural. Any shade of oak is a great choice, with white oak being the most popular.

If you want a darker floor, consider walnut or hickory. And if you’re looking for something mid-toned, consider putting a stain on your oak or opting for a brown maple.

Photo of author


Katie Barton lives with her husband and three daughters in an 1800’s style log cabin in southern Ohio. She thinks cleaning is relaxing and is considered the organizing go-to person by her family and friends. She runs the blog Cabin Lane where she shares about cleaning, decluttering, and minimalism. See full biography here.

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