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The TOP 11 Warm Neutral Paint Colours (THAT AREN’T BEIGE!)

Posted on February 16, 2022 by KylieMawdsley

The Best LIGHT neutral paint colours that are EVERYTHING but beige 

With trends leaning warmer and warmer, a lot of us are wondering how the HECK we’re going to step out of the gray world and into the beige end of things. However, there are those who are still traumatized by the builder beiges of the 90s and Tuscan-style beiges of the early 2000s – they aren’t going ANYWHERE near beige.

Living room vaulted tall stone fireplace, neutral greige taupe walls, Edgecomb. tobacco cognac leather sofa. Client photo, Kylie M Interiors Edesign

But just because a colour is WARM doesn’t mean it has to be BEIGE. That’s right, there’s a whole WORLD of colours out there that can give you warmth, without landing you back in the Tuscan era.

WARM GRAY PAINT COLOURS

To start with, let’s talk about warm gray paint colours. While these are technically WARM VERSIONS of gray, this doesn’t make them overly warm. And because I’ve written blog posts on a few of my faves, we’re taking things a bit warmer today.

Sherwin Williams Colonnade Gray, best warm grey paint color. Cambria Summerhill quartz countertop. White cabinets. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, diy decorating blogger

While Colonnade Gray is a BEAUTIFUL warm gray – it didn’t make the cut as it’s NOT warm enough!

GREIGE & TAUPE PAINT COLOURS

Greige and taupe paint colours are hugging the worlds of gray and beige without 100% allegiance to either.

Greige paint colours tend to favour a green undertone. As greige leans further away from gray, it leans more into TAN, which is why greige and tan (or beige with a yellow-green undertone) often suit each other as they can share similar undertones.

While this fireplace below was screamin’ for some shade of beige, it’s happy and more updated with a transitional colour. Sometimes it’s about finding a happy place between you and your home!

Brown stone fireplace with Benjamin Moore greige taupe paint colour on walls, oak floor. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, client photo

Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray

Taupe paint colours tend to favour a violet-pink undertone. As taupe leans further away from gray, it leans more into BEIGE, which is why taupe and beige often suit each other as they can share similar undertones (pink, in particular).

Stone fireplace, two-storey tall with Benjamin Moore London Fog, greige or taupe. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, online paint color consulting

Benjamin Moore London Fog

We’ll be focusing on the WARMER end of these colours today (don’t be scared, it won’t hurt). We might nod politely at beige or tan, but it will be like a Tinder date with beige vs a marriage.

Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige with orange oak cabinet built ins and stone fireplace. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, CLIENT PHOTO

Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige is one of my FAVE beiges that’s a hit amongst even NON-beige lovers! 

CREAM PAINT COLOURS

It would be crazy to talk about warm paint colours without hitting cream. However, in an effort to stay MODERN, we’ll be looking at considerably muted shades of cream. Just remember, cream is ALWAYS a yellow hue colour – you can’t make cream without it!

Painted stucco and brick fireplace. Painted Ballet White and White Dove with black mantel and country home decor. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, online paint color advice blog

Benjamin Moore Ballet White

A FEW THINGS TO REMEMBER…

  • For a colour to be WARM, it needs some form of beige, tan or cream/yellow in it – nature of the beast. The key is to make these shades more of a background feature than the main players.
  • Don’t forget that a paint colour’s LRV is almost as important as its colour! If you’re not familiar with LRV, READ THIS, it will change how you choose paint colours FOREVER!
  • Pay attention to your room’s exposure. The warmer your exposure is, the more you might lean into slightly grayer versions of warm neutrals. The cooler your exposure is, the warmer you might want to lean! READ MORE.
  • If you find most of these options too warm or too beige/cream for you, then you really are looking for the warm gray end of things or the grayer side of greige and taupe.

Best most popular warm neutral paint colours for walls, warm gray, taupe, greige, cream - no beige. Kylie M INteriors Edesign

1. SHERWIN WILLIAMS EGRET WHITE 7570

Egret White is a STUNNER. With its taupe base, Egret White makes a very slight nod towards a violet-pink undertone without slapping you upside the head with it.

Transitional style primary bedroom with Sherwin Williams Egret White paint color on walls. Warm grey, taupe greige. ceiling fan. Kylie M Interiors Edeign

FULL Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Egret White

2. SHERWIN WILLIAMS VERSATILE GRAY 6072

Versatile Gray is a light-medium depth TAUPE paint colour which means it has violet-pink undertones. And let me tell you, this is one DARN flexible warm neutral paint colour as it relates to coordinating with a wide range of interior finishes.

Taupe, warm gray greige paint colour comparisons. Collingwood, Sherwin Williams Versatile Gray, Requisite Gray, Benjamin Moore London Gray with light wood trim. Kylie M INteriors Edesign

In the above photo, London Fog is another taupe-inspired beauty, whereas Requisite Gray and Collingwood are closer to being WARM GRAYS with violet undertones.

Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Versatile Gray & Perfect Greige

3. BENJAMIN MOORE BALLET WHITE OC-9

Ballet White is the OG of the warm neutral world (‘Original Gangster’ for those who aren’t as hip as me – wink wink).

Why? 

Ballet White is a lighter neutral and a soft one at that. So, whereas some of the more traditional warm paint colours have more weight to them, Ballet White is soft and subtle. And while it IS a cream, it has a neutral base to calm it right the heck down.

Warm off-white paint colour, similar to Benjamin Moore Ballet White. Shown in dining room, arched mirrors. Kylie M Interiors CLIENT PHOTO

FULL Paint Colour Review of Benjamin Moore Ballet White

COLOURS THAT ARE SIMILAR TO BALLET WHITE TO COMPARE & SAMPLE

  • Sherwin Williams White Duck is DEFINITELY similar to Ballet White, and you’ll be learning all about it next!
  • Want a bit more warmth without going FULL YELLOW? Check out Benjamin Moore White Down

4. SHERWIN WILLIAMS WHITE DUCK 7010

If Ballet White is the OG of the warm neutral world, White Duck is its kissin’ cousin, which would be awkward, as I don’t expect gangsters are down with this type of relationship. But anyways.

White Duck is VERY SIMILAR to Ballet White. The main differences are that White Duck is a wee wink lighter and a touch less warm.

Benjamin Moore Sioux Falls blue green front door, Sherwin White Duck off white painted brick exterior. Kylie M Interiors Edesign, curb appeal and online decorating ideas for paint colour

White Duck with a beautiful blue-green front door

FULL Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams White Duck

COLOURS THAT ARE SIMILAR TO WHITE DUCK TO COMPARE & SAMPLE

  • Sherwin Williams Shoji White is DEFINITELY similar to White Duck – read about it HERE to find out the difference!

5. BENJAMIN MOORE GRAY MIST OC-30

Because I rely 100% on my Online Paint Colour Consulting clients for photos, I don’t always have the shots. Some colours haven’t been used enough or the photos that I have are too blurry or not usable. And this IS the case with Gray Mist. It’s a beautiful shade, but with trends previously being cooler, Gray Mist has been ignored for quite some time.

But will Gray Mist ever be the most POPULAR warm neutral paint colour? No.

Why?

Gray Mist has a green undertone. Is it subtle? Yes. Does this undertone make it a bit finicky with a lot of today’s finishes? You bet your booty it does. But this doesn’t mean YOUR home doesn’t suit a warmer green undertone, so check it out if it tickles your fancy.

Paint Colour Review of Benjamin Moore Gray Mist & Fog Mist

COLOURS THAT ARE SIMILAR TO GRAY MIST TO COMPARE & SAMPLE

  • Sherwin Williams Fog Mist is similar to Gray Mist, but with a bit more depth (lower LRV)

6. SHERWIN WILLIAMS MODERN GRAY 7632

Modern Gray certainly IS a modern gray.

Why?

You ask a lot of questions – I like that about you, and you have a great smile too. As trends lean warmer and warmer, we’re leaving gray behind, meaning that a more MODERN take on gray will have a whole lot more WARMTH to it. Modern Gray is a lovely shade of taupe, but is VERY subtle in its approach, often flashing little to no undertone. Unlike myself who flashes as much as possible whenever possible.

This next photo is as gray as Modern Gray EVER looks…

Bathroom in Sherwin Williams Modern Gray, best warm grey paint color. Kylie M Interiors edesign online color advice and decorating tips

Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Modern Gray

BTW, if you’re getting paint samples, you should check out SAMPLIZE. Samplize offers peel and stick paint samples that are more AFFORDABLE, EASIER and more ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY than traditional paint pots. Here are just a FEW reasons why I recommend Samplize to my clients…

  • samples arrive ON YOUR DOORSTEP in 1-3 business days, depending on location
  • they’re more affordable than the samples pots/rollers/foam boards that are needed for traditional paint sampling
  • if you keep the samples on their white paper, you can move them around the room

Visit the SAMPLIZE website HERE

7. BENJAMIN MOORE EDGECOMB GRAY OC-173

You had to see this one coming from a mile away (or a kilometre for all of us Canadians, eh?)

I’m sure I’ll be talking about Edgecomb Gray for the rest of my life. Why? Well, when trends are COLD, Edgecomb Gray seems to be the happy medium for warm lovers. As trends lean WARMER, Edgecomb Gray is going to be a great happy medium for the COOL lovers (I know you’re reading this, Elsa).

Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray in foyer, staircase with carpet, south facing exposure, orange oak floor. Client photo Kylie M Interiors

Edgecomb Gray is the PERFECT balance between gray and beige with NO commitment to either. It also has minimal undertones, making it a neutral shade to be reckoned with.

FULL Paint Colour Review of Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray

COLOURS THAT ARE SIMILAR TO EDGECOMB GRAY TO COMPARE & SAMPLE

Ermmmm, well…Edgecomb Gray really is a colour unto itself, but you could check out Sherwin Williams Modern Gray and Benjamin Moore Winds Breath.

8. SHERWIN WILLIAMS CREAMY 7012

Creamy is one DREAMY cream paint colour. While many cream paint colours offer a bit too much yellow for the average homeowner (including myself), Creamy gives yellow a very polite nod, without tipping the scales. It’s also the LIGHTEST and brightest shade in this blog post, without hitting the warm white end of things.

However, with its HIGH LRV, you can expect Creamy to wash out CONSIDERABLY in an overly well-lit space like this foyer below…

Curved landing at the top of the stairs with chandelier, golden doodle and Sherwin Williams Creamy by Kylie M INteriors

This living room below also has an abundance of natural light, making Creamy look more like a soft warm white…

Sherwin Williams Creamy in a living room with stone fireplace, tv and large tv stand and art gallery

FULL Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Creamy

COLOURS THAT ARE SIMILAR TO CREAMY TO COMPARE & SAMPLE

  • Benjamin Moore White Down is similar to Creamy but has a bit more body to it

COLOURS THAT REALLY STRADDLE THE LINE…

While the above colours should hit the spot, there are some colours that sit on the border between taupe/greige and beige. This means that in some rooms, they might not lean into beige due to their surrounding finishes and the exposure of the room. However, in other rooms, you might see a BIT more beige than you bargained for.

Just keep in mind that these are still VERY SUBTLE and often very FLEXIBLE shades that can be great options without getting remotely close to the traditional ends of the beige and tan worlds.

9. BENJAMIN MOORE WINDS BREATH OC-24

Benjamin Moore Winds Breath is one of my NEW FAVES! However, it’s been watching way too many Jackie Chan movies as it’s quite the ninja.

Winds Breath is the MIDDLE sample in this next photo. See how it’s not quite as beige as Accessible Beige and looks a touch more taupe compared to Ballet White

Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige, Benjamin Moore Winds Breath and Ballet wall paint colours. Kylie M Interiors Edesign

Winds Breath does have a taupe base, but of all of the options on this page, it’s one of the few that’s slightly more likely to nod at beige WITHOUT 100% commitment. I have MAD love for this colour and expect to see more of it with the shifting trends.

FULL Paint Colour Review of Benjamin Moore Winds Breath

COLOURS THAT ARE SIMILAR TO WINDS BREATH TO COMPARE & SAMPLE

  • Sherwin Williams Aesthetic White is similar to Winds Breath but is a bit cooler/grayer

10. BENJAMIN MOORE STONE HEARTH 984

I know I’m pushing my luck with this bad boy. The thing is, if you have NORTH-facing light, Stone Hearth is a warm neutral that could sit perfectly for you. However, if you have SOUTH-facing or warm afternoon sunshine, you might get a wee bit twitchy as it will lean more beige.

Family room, pool table, gas fireplace, Benjamin Moore stone Hearth taupe beige on the walls. CLIENT PHOTO. Kylie M INteriors. Rick Pharoah photogrpahy

Kylie M E-Designs / Rick Pharaoh Photography

COLOURS THAT ARE SIMILAR TO STONE HEARTH TO COMPARE & SAMPLE

  • Benjamin Moore Cedar Key is along similar lines to Stone Hearth, just lighter
  • Sherwin Williams Balanced Beige, which really does throw my WHOLE THEORY that Stone Hearth will look neutral enough for you. Both are just such ATYPICAL BEIGES as they’re not traditionally golden warm – try them, they might surprise you!

11. SHERWIN WILLIAMS AESTHETIC WHITE 7035

I am thoroughly and completely obsessed with wine funnels and Ryan Reynolds in a Speedo Aesthetic White.

Why?

Aesthetic White is a fabulous off-white paint colour that DOES have a beige base, but hot damn does it EVER LEAN INTO GRAY! Seriously – mad love.

Fireplace surround and built ins painted off white Sherwin Williams Aesthetic, travertine tile suround, oak floor. Kylie M Interiors

FULL Paint Colour Review of Sherwin Williams Aesthetic White

READ MORE

What Are UNDERTONES & How to Find Them

The 5 Best Off-White Neutral Paint Colours

The Ultimate Guide to White Paint Colours

The 12 Best Whole Home Gray & Greige Paint Colours

The 8 Best WHOLE HOME Warm Neutral Paint Colours

NEED HELP?

CHECK OUT MY ONLINE PAINT COLOUR CONSULTING!

-design and online paint colour consulting using Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams paint colors. Kylie M Interiors. DIY and affordable decorating advice blogger. Market

Chat soon,

Kylie M Interiors Edesign, signature, online paint colour consultant using Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams paint colours. DIY update advice ideas

 



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Comments

  1. Wow! I have been struggling the past month with my decision on paint colors somewhere between warm gray/beige and painting equipment in my main living areas waiting to be used and I really needed this post Kylie!! Thank you so much! You read my mind!

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  2. This is EXACTLY what I needed your voice of reason reminding me what my home needs and not what I want 🤯 !! Have a North facing room with nearly identical fireplace to the first pic with reclaimed brick ! Changing up sofas so not tied with them. Would edgecomb grey or creamy suit better in North facing room

  3. I have Simply White walls and am looking for an off white that will work in my north west facing kitchen. Would it be weird to do walks and cabinets in Simply white?

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  4. I’m glad to see some attention for Gray Mist – most of my house is painted this color and I love it. I think it works well with the variety of warm wood finishes in my older home, without being TOO warm

  5. I painted my laundry room Winds Breath last year. It really calmed down the 90’s linoleum and pinkish counter top that I am living with for a while. I have a lot of ballet white in my house but it was too yellow and seemed to clash with the fixed elements of the laundry. I was really nervous choosing it because you didn’t have any reviews on it but it turned out great! It is a really soft pretty color. It changes throughout the day but always pretty.

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  6. You continue to amaze me with your skill and your warmth! What is the wall colour in the first shot with the cognac sofa. love it!

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  7. Kylie, I am a clothing designer who knows color pretty well but I tore my now white hair out trying to find the perfect “greige” that doesn’t lean too taupe or green in various lights. I have huge windows and mostly open concept where light bounces around and changes throughout the day. I fell in love with BM’s Natural Cream! It skews a tad taupe for a short time in my southeast light but I can live with it. What do you think of this color? Have you ever used it? LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your blog!!

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      Hi Nancy! Have you check out BM Winds Breath? It’s a STUNNER. I’m always leary with Natural Cream and don’t totally trust it, which is why I haven’t reviewed it, but Winds Breath is WICKED WICKED pretty! It’s lighter and more muted for sure.

  8. Hello- Would SW white duck kitchen cabinets work with BM simply white walls? I keep getting mixed reviews that you should do the same white that you have on your walls. But others are doing a different white. Thank you so much.

  9. Hi, Kylie!
    I’m getting desperate to choose great paint color. it’s too difficult for me! Many colors looked capture the outside green color… omg…

    So I’ve been studying painting colors from your postings for several days! 🙂
    Now I’m finding out that there are too many things that affect the painting colors…
    Your postings are really great!

    I wanted to get your Consultations, but it looks always sold out. 🙂
    I’d want to buy samples from you. Could you help me to choose several samples?

    There are the East(several windows) and West(small one window) facing windows in my living room.( it’s not bright space) Travertine floor. live on a golf course. only have wood table and chairs. (almost empty now)
    Existing wall color is SW Kilim Beige, but it looks too toasted afternoon and night.

    I am thinking of a few colors, but before I buy, could you tell me about your thoughts and other colors of the sample you recommend to buy?
    1. Aesthetic white
    2. Neutral ground
    3. Moderate white

  10. Hi Kylie!

    I am painting my kitchen cabinets stone hearth and I am wanting a warm white for my walls. What warm white would look good with stone hearth and what trim color would work with it? I was thinking maybe soft chamois or winds breath, but I worry soft chamois might look green with it and wind’s breath may not offer enough contrast?

    Thanks for your help!
    Abby

  11. Do Edgecomb Gray and Ballet White work together? I’m thinking of using Edgecomb Gray in a bedroom with Ballet White in the hallway but I’m concerned the undertones will fight with one another. Would Manchester Tan be a better match for Ballet White?

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      1. I’d love to see your recommendations for a palette starting with Ballet White! I really enjoyed your updated video on Gray Owl with coordinating colors… Can you do that for Ballet White, too?

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