A Colour Review of Benjamin Moore Caliente
Well HOT DAMN…literally. I did not see this one coming! It turns out that Benjamin Moore is throwing down the gauntlet with another ‘game-changing’ colour of the year…
Not familiar with it? Well, if you haven’t visited Paris’ fashion shows (oh pshaw!), painted your front door or wanted to add a little hot SPICE to the bedroom, then you’ve probably skipped over this one.
But that doesn’t mean you should…
Caliente is part of the Affinity Colour Collection, which is well-known for having colours that are deeper and more involved than your ‘everyday’ paint colour. The average colour is made up of say, 3-4 tints. The Affinity colours can be made up of 7-8, making them hard to colour match and super versatile!
Caliente is a ravishing red (takes one to know one – wink wink) and unlike the reds of yesteryear, it doesn’t lean into the orange range, which means we’re avoiding the earthy-rusty effect. However, it’s not a terribly COLD red in that it isn’t blue toned. It really just sits nicely in a more intimate range, rather than being shocking or abrasive.
Read more: Kylie’s Colours of the Year
But that doesn’t mean you have to like it…
ANY colour and where it looks good is dependent on a variety of things such as the room, the exposure and the products in the room. However, with the Caliente, in particular, it REALLY comes down to personal tastes.
I’ve found that people either LOVE red or hate it. A lot of people can handle it as an accent but would be hesitant to commit to it on a scale larger than an apple or underwear. And then there are others who wouldn’t HESITATE to paint their entire room a rip-roarin’ red or at the very least a feature wall! (Personally, the only red I’ll be splashing on my walls tastes an awful lot like wine, in which case I’ll be licking my walls shortly).
So with that being said, let’s take a closer look at Caliente to see if it could work for you…
What is the LRV of Caliente
Caliente DOES pack a punch with an LRV of 6.89! This means it’s in the darker range and will add a sultry, sexy look to your walls – but let’s keep things PG here people.
Read more: The Ultimate Guide to LRV and Choosing Paint Colours
Where does Caliente work the best?
There are a LOT of places that Caliente will work. It’s not obnoxious like a primary red and is a bit more fresh and striking than a more country, rustic red.
The Front Door
SHUT THE FRONT DOOR – DO YOU WANT TO HEAT THE WHOLE NEIGHBOURHOOD – sorry flashback there.
Really though, I’m not a red fan, but this entryway TOTALLY does it for me. I think it’s the contrast with the white and gray – it’s pretty striking!
Accessories and Accents
This might be where I’d land. And while I prefer a more rustic red, I can see how this fresh red is TOTALLY appealing in a room like this!
Or MAYBE as a Feature Wall
Feature walls are a great way to add personality to a room without having to commit a) long term and b) large scale.
However, if you are a lover of all things red (including myself) then you might be RED-Y to commit to it in an entire room, in which case red can look SMASHING in…
A Powder Room
Powder rooms are the BEST place to add personality and leave your guests with a lasting impression!
Personally, I don’t need to add any more reason for Tim to get fired up for the pants-off-dance-off, so I’ll be avoiding this one for sure.
A Dining Room
Red is GREAT for the appetite!
So whatcha think – does it float ‘yer boat or are you more comfortable with Behr’s Colour of the Year or Sherwin Williams (blog post tba…maybe)?
A few more notes about Caliente…
- It can help to jazz up a cooler north facing room or FURTHER enhance the warmth of a south facing room
- It looks stunning with a lot of wood tones, but I might avoid overly orange toned woods
- It will benefit from a good coat of primer before you jump in to the real painting
- Consider a matte or at the most eggshell finish. Red can get a bit garish on walls if they are too glossy
Not sure which colour to pick for YOUR room?
Check out my E-DESIGN packages – they’re affordable AND fun!
Kylie’s Colours of the Year: Real People Real Homes
“Pants off dance off”? You are hilarious! And give great paint advice too. ????
Thanks Karen! I 2nd guessed that one as my Mom said it was too over the top. But really, that is kind of my humour, especially after a glass of wine!
You are so freaking funny Kylie!
Stunning!!! I LOVE it. I think it will work in my powder room. The white trim looks amazing with it too. Oceanside was too cold for me and didn’t look nice with my maple cabinets. I diggity-dig it!
Well THANK you, i try. Tim doesn’t find me quite as funny so I’m glad SOMEbody does! And yes, you know I love teal, but I feel like we’ve ‘been there done that’. Oceanside is pretty, but feels a bit 5 years ago maybe…
Bright. Bold. Intense. Saturated lol. I had a feeling they would lean towards a color in this realm. Red is EVERYWHERE! (Well kinda sorta hehe). Cool name-Caliente. I personally prefer red as an accent color only as I’m a neutral kind of girl. But I can appreciate how striking it can look in someone else’s home. Love that red door. Not for me but still … The blues win out for me but it’d been boring if they had all picked the same color/colour story, right? Thanks for a lighthearted , funny and informative post. I always laugh out loud. ????
As Donald Duck would say “You Quack me up!” But seriously, I love reading your blogs and your website! You are a wealth of expert decorating advise and your colour reviews are always dead-on fantastic! So thank you so much for that. BTW, I love red! I have accents of red throughout my house and it never feels like Christmas to me. Having said that, I was torn between accenting my white & grey kitchen with red or the popular teal blue that is also very pretty but in the end I went with the red. This review of yours just reminded me again of why I love red so much.
Cheers to you, Lori
Wahoo, thanks Lori! I am a bit quackers…
As for the kitchen, you know what you CAN do? Use your red accents as 75% of your accent palette and then for the remaining 25% add the teal. They are SO dynamic together and really bounce off each other. It doesn’t take much to make some magic!
This is a gorgeous red! I love that powder room.
Do you have a source for the photo of the bed with the red bench and the red and white pillows? I love that pillow fabric and am wondering if its available for purchase somewhere. Thanks!
Hi Diana! Those are actually BM’s photos, so I’m sorry I can’t help with that!
I really hope that red will make a comeback or at least no longer be considered “dated”. I prefer more country reds as they always make me think of the barns that I grew up with in the South. Kudos to Benjamin Moore!
You’re like me, I can totally get into a country red, but I’m hard-pressed to fall for the more intense, vibrant ones….
This site is so fun and my absolute go to for all things paint as I renovate a 100 year old tudor house in New York. I am absolutely using this color for the front door and I think I’m going to use it for the foyer too. It’s a small space, 50 square feet maybe, and is separated from the rest of the house by a paneled glass door. The rest of my color palette is beige and gray but my style is eclectic and I’m happiest when nothing quite goes! Here’s hoping it’s not too much…
Oh i bet it will be AHHHHmazing – you should send photos when it’s all done!
I had my bedroom Caliente in my last house and LOVED it. It was awesome. Dark enough to add mystery, and complex enough to let me stare at it for hours and still discover things about it. I moved and miss it. Caliente has my heart. Be bold. It’s worth it!
Ooo, I bet it was amazing! I love it when people go for colour and be brave, those are some of the best spaces!