These warm shades of white will not disappoint you! (2023)

These are my favorite warm shades of white to create a cozy, traditional backdrop on your interior walls. I Tried and Tested Over 35 Cream Paint Colors and Narrowed Them Down to These 8The best warm white colorsto your house. Learn more about each color, including LRV, undertones, and examples!

What I love about a neutral background is that it gives you freedom with your interior color palette and decor. Your collected treasures often look best against a neutral background, allowing you to rotate decorations in and out of your space without ever worrying about them bumping into each other.

But not all white people are created equal. Okay, technically the colors I'm sharing today are off-white (more on that below).

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By the way, during the quarantine I spent months playing with colors and deciding what I wanted for my house. (I had too much time on my hands!)

I took all my knowledge from all my samples and boiled it down to this one8 paint colors that are my favorite warm white tones for a neutral background. I've listed a few more below that didn't make my list but are still good in case you don't like any of them.

Need to learn how to properly test paint for your home? I put together a complete tutorial forHow to test ink colorsprecisely because!

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Warm white vs cool white

Cool whites tend towards blue or gray, while warm whites look more creamy or with a hint of tan. The undertones of warm white colors are actually blue, purple, or green, but the goal of a truly neutral color (if there is such a thing) is to neutralize these undertones so they don't stand out.

The warm white color lends itself to a more traditional feel with a soft look. Treat it like a warm, gentle hug. Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but warm white creates a cozy feel!

What is LRV?

LRV, or Light Reflectance Value, indicates how light or dark a color appears on a scale from 0 (black) to 100 (white).

The higher the LRV (closer to 100), the more colors will be thrown onto the wall by surrounding objects. For example, a color with an LRV of 75 has a green tint when there is a lot of green in front of the window. Or maybe pink if you have a red tile roof.

On the other hand, paint with an LRV less than 50 absorbs more light than it reflects and therefore does not reflect the surrounding environment in the same way as paint with a higher LRV.

What are off-white colors?

Off-white ink colors have an LRV between approximately 66 and 82 (based on manufacturer's color collections). Anything above 82 actually counts as true white. While off-white is still very bright, it usually has enough color to show some contrast with the white finish.

How important is lighting?

Since off-whites have a high LRV, they are very sensitive to light. Well-lit rooms can fade off-whites. And paint from reflective environments can bounce off walls and splatter paint. Not to mention that rooms facing south have a more yellow light and those facing north have a bluish light.

All of these lighting differences affect how color looks in your home, which is why it's so important to try before you buy!

Okay, now that the technical stuff is done, let's get down to business... the list! I ordered them from highest LRV (brightest) to lowest (darker).

Pluma de Heron – Sherwin Williams

LRV: 75

Heron Plume (not to be confused with SW White Heron) is a beautiful warm off-white. It looks like a very light gray (which is a gray/beige combination for those who thought it was a typo). It can have a slight pink undertone (but not as strong as Pale Oak) depending on the lighting, which is why testing paint colors in your home is so important.

Once upon a time (okay, 2014) Heron Plume was one of the colors of Pottery Barn through its collaboration with Sherwin Williams. So you know it's a great neutral that goes well with other colors.

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Classic Gray - Benjamin Moore

LRV: 74.78

Classic Gray is the one I feel like everyone is talking about. However, the name is something of a misnomer. For most, gray is a cool color, and while classic gray is probably the coolest on my list, it's actually a warm gray.

While absolutely gorgeous, classic gray can wash out in a bright room because it's so pale. Again, always experiment in your home to see how a color will really look in your space.

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Ballet Branco – Benjamin Moore

LRV: 73.68

Ballet White really is the chameleon of colors. It definitely has a warm and creamy base, but depending on the lighting it can lean a lot towards the gray side.

Now, don't let the use of the word "creamy" put you off. Yes, it has a yellow base, but unlike other cream colors, the neutral base actually tones down the yellow and makes it... well, neutral!

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You can learn more about this color in myComplete paint assessment

Similar to White Ballet

If Ballet White is close but not quite good, give it a trySherwin Williams Pato BrancoORFarrow and Ball White School. Both are very similar!

Natural Choice - Sherwin Williams

LRV: 73

Natural Choice is a creamy, warm white that's not too yellow or too gray. It's a touch greener than the others here, but overall it's just a nice, natural choice! (pun intended!)

Windhauch – Benjamin Moore

LRV: 70.69

Compared to Ballet White, Wind's Breath leans more towards taupe than cream and is just a nice warm neutral. Like many off-whites, it has a pink undertone, so be sure to see how it compares to other elements in your home.

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Neutral Ground - Sherwin Williams

LRV: 70

Neutral Ground is a smooth tan. It doesn't have the orange or pink undertones of other off-whites, and instead has more yellows and greens. Within this list, it seems to be the creamiest of the bunch, but overall it's pretty neutral, falling between beige and gray.

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Creme Natural – Benjamin Moore

LRV: 66.26

Think Natural Cream and a nice blend of yellow and gray. I admit I was hesitant to try it because of the name. I found "Creme" too yellow, but Natural Cream is really a very light gray.

Similar to Natural Cream

Interesting,Benjamin Moore Tapestry Beigeit is very similar, but I found it a little more yellowish than the Natural Cream. Ironic considering the choice of name….

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LRV: 64

If you want a darker, warmer white without too much color, Dumpling might be the color you're looking for! Darkest on my list, Dumpling is a beautiful warm grey.

But I have good news and bad news when it comes to dumplings. Let's start with the bad news. The Dumpling is part of Sherwin Williams' Emerald Designer Edition, meaning it's only available in the Emerald line (the more expensive one). The design line has a few different collections and Dumpling is part of their Warm & Welcoming collection. But the bad news is that it cannot be crafted in the regular sample pots as it only comes in Emerald!

The good news is that Sherwin Williams can color match and make your own dumpling color chip in any color line including the sample pots. Now they will say they can't exactly match it because the emerald line is yadda yadda yadda. I'm sure it's true... to a point. But I'll be honest, I put the color combination they made for me on the cupcake color chip and I honestly couldn't tell the difference between the two no matter how hard I tried.

So if you're interested in cupcake but don't want to pay the top price, just order a color match!

The dumpling is so new that I couldn't even find a picture of it to show you. Instead, here's a breakdown of ALL the colors so you can see how Dumpling stacks up against the others I've listed here. I had to turn the brightness down loooooooooooooooooooooooooh to not wash out the colors on the screen!

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Other neutrals to consider

There are some other very popular neutral colors that you can consider if none of them suit your needs.

Pale Oak—Benjamin Moore

This is actually a beautiful gray color and one I have been considering very seriously. With an LRV of 69.89, it has enough color to contrast well with a glossy white finish. Depending on the light, however, it can take on a pink hue. With my red roof and tall LRV, it was too pink for my house. But in another room, this is a beautiful color.

Aesthetic White – Sherwin Williams

This one is a warm beige, but leans more towards gray than some of the others on my list (except maybe the Classic Grey). With an LRV of 73, it's definitely an off-white, but I felt it had less depth of color than others with a similar LRV. It's definitely neutral, but it can take on a green hue depending on the lighting.

Edgecomb Grey e Baby Fawn – Benjamin Moore

As if the color names are confusing enough, type in Edgecomb Gray! It is also in Benjamin Moore's color deck as Baby Fawn, but they are the same color. I'll just refer to him as Edgecomb Gray from here on out, simply because that's the more familiar name.

Edgecomb Gray has an LRV of 63.88 and if I wanted a slightly darker color in my home, this would have been my go-to choice! This is an absolutely beautiful warm gray color that is perfect for a whole house color scheme. Depending on the incidence of light, it becomes more beige or more gray (but still warm). If the other paint colors on this list are too light for your tastes, consider Edgecomb Gray!

How to adjust the color

Don't worry if there isn't a Benjamin Moore or Sherwin Williams in your area! Lowes also stocks Sherwin Williams and ACE Hardware Benjamin Moore stocks, but you can always order online or order fromExample.Another option is color matching.

Paintshops, including hardware shops, have a computer that can analyze a sample and replicate the paint on any brand of paint. The sample should normally beat least as big as a quarter, so bringing a color chip card is perfect!

The computer is usually pretty good at matching colors, but be sure to test it on your swatch to ensure a perfect match. If it's not close enough, they can make one.handball. This means that a person is manually adjusting the colors until they are perfect. This second option takes a lot longer, but if you want an exact match, it's worth it!

More decorating tips

  • The BEST way to test paint colors in your home!
  • Select the color: how to identify the undertone
  • How to choose the perfect paint color
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