The most popular HARD to get white paint colour
When it comes to my Online Paint Colour Consulting, I have a few favourite paint colours that I refer to time and time again. Why? Because they work. However, there’s one particular white that’s not always the easiest to get, and that colour is Sherwin Williams High Reflective White.
High Reflective White is one of the most WHITE white paint colours on the market, which is why I refer to it so often. Without the warm nod of Alabaster or cool wink of Extra White, High Reflective White keeps things simple.
So why is it so FREAKIN’ HARD TO GET?
A lot of paint store employees claim that it doesn’t cover well. Fair enough, but that point could be made for MANY white paint colours – they simply don’t have the same hide (ability to cover old colours and look solid) compared to colours with a bit more meat on their bones (lower LRVs).
So with this being said, I KNOW that High Reflective White is a great option and have the clients and personal experience to prove it. I’m just not totally sure why so many of my clients have a hard time getting it, saying that their paint store won’t make it for them/doesn’t carry it.
Sooooo, why is it listed in the fan deck? Why is it offered as an option if it isn’t really an option?
Because it CAN be made. Oh yes, it can be made.
HOW TO MAKE SHERWIN WILLIAMS HIGH REFLECTIVE WHITE
(as told to me by Sherwin William’s employees)
If you ask the tech for a gallon of High Reflective White and they say ‘no problemo’, then Bob’s your Uncle. HOWEVER, if they aren’t too excited about the idea, here’s how it works…
1. Ask the paint store tech to grab Sherwin Williams Extra White (BTW, Extra White is ALSO a ‘base’ paint used to make other colours)
2. Ask them to top up the gallon with white tint, again, improving the coverage AND brightening it a stitch. 4 OUNCES should do it, but this can vary a bit depending on the type of paint you choose.
And while this is a possible solution, I won’t lie, I’m slightly sceptical.
High Reflective White has an LRV of 93, making it pretty darn WHITE white. Extra White comes in at 86, making it a SOFT white (read about LRV HERE). It seems to me that it would take an AWFUL LOT of white tint to increase Extra White’s LRV by seven points. Will it brighten it and cut back the blue undertone found in Extra White? Sure, but will it have that gloriously high LRV? Hard to say.
ANOTHER WAY TO MAKE SHERWIN WILLIAMS HIGH REFLECTIVE WHITE (again, as told to me by a Sherwin Williams employee)
This next idea is an OPTION, but it’s pretty slim pickin’s as not many of Sherwin William’s paints are actually available in ‘actual’ High Reflective White.
1. Grab a gallon of High Reflective White (the base) if they HAPPEN to have the type of paint you want pre-made in this colour
2. Top up the gallon with white tint, you know, the stuff that squirts out of the machine – approx 4 ounces
VOILA – HIGH REFLECTIVE WHITE!
And, of course, it will be the trained paint technician doing this, not you.
Now you have your SIMPLE white base, topped up with more white colourant, giving you a usable version of High Reflective White. The additional colourant gives your paint more HIDE and body, helping it cover your old colour better.
And I have one more great tip for you…
BUY A HIGHER QUALITY PAINT
When it comes to paint, you really DO get what you pay for. And as it relates to whites, higher quality paint is going to COVER better. Think of it this way, would you rather spend $90 on one gallon of paint that covers your room or $120 (two less expensive gallons @ $60) as you needed to apply four to five coats to get the same hide and coverage found in the pricier line???
And remember, this lack of hide isn’t unique to High Reflective White, it’s a common thread with many of the popular white paint colours. You often have to bump up in QUALITY and add those shots of white to get half-decent coverage (I also recommend two coats of primer to get a good headstart).
Long story short, when it comes to High Reflective White, it’s a toss-up as to whether the paint store will make it for you. However, in my experience, if it’s the type of white you’re looking for, it’s DEFINITELY worth asking. And until they discontinue it as a colour option and replace it with something equally as bright (high LRV), I’m going to USE IT and ABUSE it because it’s a darn pretty and hugely versatile white paint colour.
WHICH PAINT COLOURS ARE SIMILAR TO HIGH REFLECTIVE WHITE?
If you’re having a hard time getting High Reflective White, check out…
- Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace. The difference between Chantilly Lace is that it’s a tiny bit softer than High Reflective White (read about it HERE)
- BEHR Ultra Pure White. The difference between Ultra Pure White is that it’s a tiny bit WHITER and brighter than High Reflective White (read about it HERE)
- Sherwin Williams Extra White. The difference between Extra White is that it’s a touch COOLER than High Reflective White (read about it HERE)