HOW TO CHOOSE A WHITE PAINT

Updated: Nov 18, 2018



Okay I’m just going to say it - not all whites are created equal. Whites are deceiving. Whites can be blue, pink, or brown in hue. As a designer, one of the most common questions we get asked is "how do I choose a white paint that is right for my home?"

Paint Colour: Benjamin Moore, Chantilly Lace


Every paint manufacturer seems to have their own “whitest white” - not to mention all the other variations of “off-white” that are produced. Benjamin Moore alone makes approximately 10,000,000 different shades of white...so where do you even begin to choose one?


Well lets just throw another wrench in the mix and also say that not all light is created equal. Lights too have colour. Step into any home hardware store and you will find lightbulbs displayed in the categories of: Bright White, Day Light, Warm Light and Cool White - each representing a different kind of light temperature. The cooler the light, the more blue the light appears. The warmer the light, the more the light reflects a traditional incandescent bulb.







"The colour of the light you use in an interior space will directly affect the appearance of paint, finishes and materials."





If you have a blue-hued light source, it will bring out the blue in your paint. If you have a yellow-hued light source, it will bring out the warm tones of your paint. The colour of the light you use in an interior space will directly affect the appearance of the paint, finishes, and materials. Our recommendation is to purchase a light bulb that is as close to Day Light as possible. Day Light will stay consistent and compliment, not fight, any natural light coming into the space. This will also allow any paint on a wall to look as close to the swatch colour you fell in love with as possible!



Once you have your light source selected, grab samples of a few different whites and compare, compare compare! A crisp white may appear so in the paint store, but once you bring it home it may take on another tone altogether. This is due to the varying light conditions as well as other surrounding finishes. For example, your gorgeous original oak floors may reflect warm tones onto the paint, making it appear warmer than anticipated.




Here are some of our favourite white paints:

WARM WHITE

White Dove, Benjamin Moore.

This colour is warm without feeling "muddy" or too heavy. Be sure to use with daylight or cooler light to ensure the colour doesn’t appear pinkish or brown.


CRISP WHITE

Chantilly Lace, Benjamin Moore.

This white is classic and looks as "white" as possible without feeling too stark. If you are looking for a neutral, crisp and clean white - Chantilly Lace is the colour for you. We have used this colour many times and it never disappoints!


SOFT WHITE

Simply White, Benjamin Moore

This would be considered an "off white" because it is very close, but a bit warmer. This colour will appear white until a stark white is placed next to it, but will not be as warm as white dove.


Image Sources in order of appearance:

www.mjay.ca

www.mjay.ca

www.benjaminmoore.com


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