The TOP Warm Whites from Sherwin Williams
You’ll find Sherwin William’s near the top of every list regarding the most popular warm white paint colours. Why?
Warm white paint colours can EASILY overcommit to yellow, leaving you with walls that look more CREAMY than white. And while Sherwin’s whites certainly offer some warmth, you get to choose from a RANGE, leaving you room to commit to as little or as much yellow as you like!
But before we take a look at these wondrous whites, let’s have a little chat about exposure (not the indecent kind…not this time anyway).
WHITE PAINT COLOURS & EXPOSURE
More so than ANY other paint colour, white responds to its environment.
White paint colours have the highest LRVs. If you don’t know about LRV, the quick n’ dirty is that every paint colour has a number on a scale of 0-100 that tells you how light or dark it is. 100 is the brightest and 0 is the darkest (well, 94 is actually the WHITEST white we can get, but I don’t want to totally nerd out on you).
LRV stands for LIGHT REFLECTANCE VALUE, which lets you know how much light a colour will reflect.
White paint colours run between 82-94 (approx), meaning they reflect a HECK OF A LOT OF LIGHT. So, if you give your white walls a tinted light, they’ll pick it up. And while you might never have realized it, different EXPOSURES can cast a variety of colours on our walls!
- SOUTH-FACING LIGHT – yellow hue
- NORTH-FACING LIGHT – gray with a wink of cool blue
- EAST – nothing notable in the morning, flattens colours in the afternoon (slightly gray)
- WEST – flattens colours slightly in the morning, adds yellow-orange-pink in the afternoon
The Ultimate Guide to Choosing Paint Colours Using LRV
What does this mean to YOU?
As it relates to warm whites, if you choose an overly warm white and have south-facing light, it’s going to look EVEN WARMER. If this is cool beans with you, great. If not, you may want to look at a warm white that’s a BIT more muted (ie. Pure White, which we’re looking at shortly).
On the other side, if you have north-facing light and choose a warm white that’s more on the subtle side, you risk it picking up some of the cool gray-blue light from your exposure. In this case, you might want to choose a white that leans MORE into its warmth (ie. Alabaster or Greek Villa, which we’re looking at shortly).
And funny enough, having more than ONE of the above exposures can make life easier as you often have a bit more of a balanced, flexible light in your space.
North, East, South, West – Which Paint Colour is The Best?
Can you tell I’ve drank WAY TOO MUCH COFFEE TODAY?
Must be time for wine.
Anyway, let’s get onto the colours you came for!
SHERWIN WILLIAMS ALABASTER 7008
Alabaster is one of the SOFTEST warm whites from Sherwin – any darker and it would be more of an off-white. This is because Alabaster has an LRV of 82, putting it right on the edge of the off-white range.
As long as Alabaster is the whitest white in your space, and you don’t partner it with a finish that’s WHITER than it (in other words, I would never wear shorts in a room with Alabaster walls), it will act more like white.
Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Alabaster
Get your peel & stick sample of Alabaster HERE
SHERWIN WILLIAMS PURE WHITE 7005
While I have mad love for Alabaster’s soft warmth, it’s Pure White that has my heart. Well, Pure White and Ryan Reynolds but there’s only ONE of them I can plaster on my walls (although a girl can dream).
Pure White is ALSO a soft white but has a slightly higher LRV than Alabaster, so it’s a bit brighter looking. HOWEVER, its warmth is GREATLY subdued in comparison.
If you’re choosing between Alabaster and Pure White and have a home with both south AND north-facing rooms, please note that Pure White is far more likely to pick up a bit of a cool hue. On the other hand, Alabaster (or Greek Villa) are better at handling a cooler exposure without losing as much of their warmth.
Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Pure White
Get your peel & stick sample of Pure White HERE
SHERWIN WILLIAMS GREEK VILLA 7551
Greek Villa is like a hybrid between Alabaster and Pure White. While it has a similar WARMTH to Alabaster, it’s a bit brighter, having the same LRV as Pure White. So, if you find Pure White NOT warm enough, but you like its DEPTH, Greek Villa could be the perfect choice for you!
Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Greek Villa
Get your peel & stick sample of Greek Villa HERE
Now just because these are the most popular warm whites with my clients, doesn’t mean they’re warm enough for YOU. If you want something with MORE warmth, you’ve got options, but first, let’s have a quick chat (famous last words).
Kylie M E-Design with JR PHOTOGRAPHY
As mentioned at the beginning of this blog post, it’s easy for white to become overwhelmed with YELLOW. And even if this is what you’re looking for, it WILL limit you in the future as it relates to using it on cabinets and trim. In fact, a few of these are whites that I would NEVER PAINT MY TRIM OR CABINETS – hard no. However, they’re OFTEN whites that I suggest for walls. If you want to find out why, check out the previous link.
The 5 Types of White Paint Colours
THE 3 BEST SUPER WARM WHITES
Remember, the BASE colour in the most popular warm whites is YELLOW, so be prepared if you have south or west-facing sunshine – things are gonna get TOASTY!
SHERWIN WILLIAMS DOVER WHITE 6385
While Dover White is the BANE of my existence when it comes to cabinets and trims, it sure makes for a darn pretty wall colour! With its LRV of 83, Dover White is a soft white, like Alabaster, but upon comparing the two you’ll see that Dover White has a lot more yellow/cream to it.
Why is Dover White an issue on cabinets and trims?
The degree of yellow in it makes it TROUBLESOME when trying to coordinate wall colours, countertops and backsplashes. BUT AGAIN, it can be quite pretty on walls!
In this next room, look at the white trim compared to the Dover White walls. This shows you that bit of yellow you can expect to see in a moderately lit space…
Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Dover White
Get your peel & stick sample of Dover White HERE
SHERWIN WILLIAMS WHITETAIL 7013
Whitetail could be a great choice if you want a BRIGHTER warm white, not a SOFT one. Whitetail has a slightly higher LRV than Greek Villa, coming in at 86 and also has a more noticeable shade of yellow popping up.
This next home was previously a HOT MESS of undertones and WAY too much yellow…
However, the yellow siding was STAYING for the long term and needed to be accommodated. For this reason, Whitetail is a GREAT choice for the trim and garage door, whereas it would likely be too yellow for the average home…
Get your peel & stick sample of Whitetail HERE
SHERWIN WILLIAMS CREAMY 7012
Creamy is a beauty, sitting SMACK DAB between the white and the off-white range (LRV 81). If you want a warm white with a bit more meat on its bones but without an OBNOXIOUS amount of yellow, Creamy is HANDS-DOWN my favourite option.
This next photo flashes back to my previous coffee-induced ramble about white paint colours and exposures…
On the far right, Creamy is getting southwest facing light on a slightly overcast day. This southwest light lets Creamy keep some of its warmth, but the lack of actual SUN has it looking a bit more muted. To the far left, Creamy is getting north-east facing light.
On the far left, the AMOUNT of natural light hitting the walls is totally washing Creamy out (which will happen with any light colour), but there’s also a change in HUE on the walls, as Creamy takes up a slightly cooler cast.
In this next photo, Creamy is on the walls; Benjamin Moore Cloud White is on the TV cabinet. Notice how Creamy has more visible warmth than in the previous photo…
Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Creamy
Get your peel & stick sample of Creamy HERE
And that’s it! Hopefully, you found the warm white you’ve been looking for. If not, keep on reading; I’ve got more!
Benjamin Moore’s 3 Best Warm White Paint Colours
The 5 Types of White Paint Colours
The Ultimate Guide to White Paint Colours
The 11 Best Warm Neutrals That AREN’T BEIGE!
Check out my ONLINE PAINT COLOUR CONSULTING PACKAGES
We have WHitetail everywhere – walls, trim, bookcases, upper kitchen cabs — love it. It feels warm & cozy while still white. Also it’s an amazing backdrop for brightly coloured art.
THANK you for this, it’s these comments that help others make their own choice!
i finally pulled the plug on alabaster cabinets, trim doors in my house built in 2000. Elsewhere in the house it looks good with a light beige walls and the alabaster trim/builtins. In the kitchen its reading too white with my tumbled travertine backsplash (which before alabaster looked really light but its not next to alabaster). And the granite is an upgraded with mostly black, brown, golds etc – a little cream in there but not alot. So of course I’m in a panic as I’ve spent the last year researching, had a paid designer that recommended these colors last year. And recently had a SW color consultant who affirmed the colors. Im hoping if I change out the backsplash that will help some. Just stressed as i truly thought I used all my tools. There is a kitchen onyour blog that has alabaster cabinets and a warmer granite. Its just reading so white in my house 🙁 no warmth to it.
I’m going to go out here and say I love Dover White on trim. I have it in all my bedrooms. It looks nice and this is with South, east and north facing rooms. So I’m not sure why it’s the bane of your existence. I’m getting ready to paint my bathroom vanity with it. So we are going to have to agree to disagree.
It’s all good Nanci, as long as you love it! It’s only for those who want to branch out, as the degree of yellow in it can be a bit limiting :).
Hi Kylie, I love your blog!! I’m wondering if Alabaster or SW Creamy could be good options for my kitchen cabinets I’m looking to paint. I have BM Cloud white on all my doors, trim and ceiling. My walls are BM Edgecomb grey. My cabinets go all the way up to my ceiling too. So would these off whites be enough contrast from my Cloud White ceiling? I know that you’re probably going to suggest I stick with Cloud White on my cabinets but I really love the look of creamy off white cabinets (not too yellow of course), like Studio McGee 😉☺️. Really appreciate your thought!
Could I do creamy on my walls and my kitchen cabinets? Thank you!
Yup, as long as it’s the same color on both!
Our entire home is Sherwin Williams Kilim Beige walls with SW Divine White trim. I cannot find any other beiges in SW or Benjamin Moore (used by our painter) that I like better. We don’t have any grays, and don’t want to see green or strong yellow undertones. What are some light, neutral, warm color options for the walls that would compliment Divine White trim and doors? Does lightening Kilim Beige provide good results? I’ve read MANY of your reviews and value your opinion.
Divine White is VERY (VERY) finicky. Your best bet would be to use a darkened version of it on the walls (try 50%) or try lightening Kilim Beige to see how that looks :).