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How to Choose the Right White Paint

How to Choose the Right White Paint

Read these tips to choose that perfect shade of white for your home.

Anyone who has completed an interior painting job in their home can tell you that choosing the right shade of white for their home can be surprisingly difficult. White can come in many tints and appear differently depending on the lighting. To make your decision a little easier, below is a collection of the best tips on how to choose the right white paint.

Warm, Cool, or Neutral

The first step in choosing the best white color for your room is to determine its color temperature: warm, cool, or neutral. Warm whites tend to have reddish or yellowish undertones. A warm white pairs well with a more rustic or traditional look. For example, if you have wooden elements in your space, a warmer white will keep with the theme. If you have very bold colors in your home, though, you’ll want to go for a cool white. A cool white, which tends to have a bluish tint, will create a starker, brighter contrast with your accent colors. If your color scheme is more in-between, a neutral white, which has the least amount of tinting, will do fine.


The lighting in your room plays a huge role in how your walls will look. What might look like a dark, grayish shade of white on a color swatch may appear dazzling as a snowy day on your daylit walls. The daylight, moonlight, and artificial light that your room has all play its colors on the walls. White more than any color will reflect that. If your home has very bright, colder light, you can go a shade darker and a tone warmer than you might. The opposite is true if you have warm light coming into your space. 

How to See the Undertone

So far, the two main ways to choose the best white color seem to be based on the room’s furnishings and its lighting. How then, practically, can you test your options? Within the range of warm or cool whites, there is still a multitude of options with countless undertones hiding underneath. One of the greatest challenges with warmer whites is the surprise of a sickly yellow hue underneath an unassuming white. Thankfully, there are two good ways to see.

Online swatches of color take out any unwanted effect on the color samples. You can more easily see what color the darkest hue is in the white. Once you’ve chosen your candidates, you can purchase samples and hang 9×12 samples on the wall. This is much more effective than holding a tiny swatch up to the wall for a few seconds. Watch throughout the day and night how the light affects the whites. Whichever you like best, you can go ahead and paint.


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This entry was posted on Friday, August 23rd, 2019 at 11:18 am. Both comments and pings are currently closed.