The Best Neutral Paint Colors: 11 Home Bloggers Share Their Favorites

Finding the right neutral paint color is a surefire way to freshen up your home and transform it from bland to modern. And with colors ranging from white to “greige” to black, neutral paint has moved far beyond traditional beige.

You have lots of options, and that can feel overwhelming. Even picking a basic white paint means choosing between a range of stark whites or warmer off whites — all with a world of undertones.

To make it a little easier, I’ve asked some of my favorite home decor bloggers to spill the beans. These ladies have updated their homes room by room, testing out several neutral paint colors until they got it right. So what are their go-to paints?

Us home bloggers love our neutrals.

White is a timeless choice, while greige (that taupe-like happy spot between gray and beige) is beloved for its ability to warm up a space. And even an understated shade of black can be the perfect addition to a room.

Keep reading to see all the home blogger picks!

Note: This post contains affiliate links. Learn more on my Disclosures page (and thanks for your support!)


Polar Bear by Behr

Picked by Jessica Welling | Jessica Welling Interiors

Behr Polar Bear neutral paint color

“We need all the light we can get…”

“I live in Seattle, where the sky is gray most days. We need all the light we can get inside our homes, and one of the top requests I get from clients is to ‘brighten things up.’ Short of adding more windows and skylights, the best way I’ve found to do that is to paint the walls a clean bright white, and then I bring in color with art, pillows, and accessories. I like that Polar Bear doesn’t really tilt toward yellow or blue or grey, but it doesn’t feel cold and stark.”

Jessica Welling Interiors uses Behr's Polar Bear paint color
Photo by Jessica Welling Interiors | Behr Polar Bear

Edgecomb Gray by Benjamin Moore

Picked by Kristina | My Semi Designed Life

Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray neutral paint

“…walks the line between ‘greige’ and gray…”

“While there are a few neutral paint colors I keep in my back pocket, I have to say I would peg Benjamin Moore’s Edgecomb Gray (HC-173) as the top favorite. It is a wonderful neutral that walks the line between ‘greige’ and gray, without any of the green, blue, or yellow undertones you might want to avoid in a neutral.

“Depending on lighting, it can go from a soft gray to a warmer beige, but it is light and bright enough to not overpower any space. It is a wonderful background for any style of interior and is a great contrast for adding pops of color. It is also a perfect shade to use throughout a home, including the popular open concept, since it is so versatile. Gray has been a popular color for a while now, and for good reason, but Edgecomb provides just the right amount of gray while staying effortlessly timeless.”


Icy Avalanche by Sherwin Williams

Picked by Stephanie | Dogwood DIY

Sherwin Williams Icy Avalanche neutral paint

“…brightens up dark corners…”

“One of the best neutral paint colors for a bathroom [or any room in your home] is Icy Avalanche by Sherwin Williams. It’s a soft, barely gray color that goes well with accent colors of all shades. This is the perfect paint color for bathrooms or smaller rooms in your home because it brightens up dark corners, but also makes the room feel warm and cozy. We have this color in our bathroom and I love it because it’s light but doesn’t show fingerprints or marks like some other neutral paints I’ve used in the past. We have two kids, so our bathroom can get pretty messy!

“If you’re looking for a neutral paint that can go with multiple accent colors [and isn’t beige], doesn’t show smudges, and is perfect for brightening any room, go with Icy Avalanche by Sherwin Williams.”


Simply White by Benjamin Moore

You can’t go wrong with a pure white paint color. Benjamin Moore’s Simply White got the seal of approval from both Hydrangea Treehouse and Decor Hint.

Picked by Kelin | Hydrangea Treehouse

Benjamin Moore Simply White neutral paint color

“…clean, bright but not stark.”

“My favorite neutral color is Simply White by Benjamin Moore. My house was built in 1940 with quite some old house character. Simply White is bright and warm, which goes really well with classic styles with a vintage flare. I painted my kitchen and dining room wall with Simply White with trims in the same color but different sheen. It makes the space look clean, bright but not stark. It is definitely my #1 go-to neutral color!”

Kelin at Hydrangea Treehouse says her favorite neutral paint color is Benjamin Moore Simply White
Photo by Hydrangea Treehouse | Benjamin Moore Simply White

Picked by Karen | Decor Hint

Benjamin Moore Simply White neutral paint color

“…the perfect backdrop for most decorating styles.”

“One of my favorite neutral paint colors is Benjamin Moore Simply White. It’s a very bright white but also cozy at the same time and it serves as the perfect backdrop for most decorating styles. When we renovated our home, we used it throughout the main level. I also recently painted my daughter’s room a version of this (hint: Behr Ultra Pure White is almost an exact match for BM Simply White) and it turned out perfectly.”

Karen at Decor Hint says her favorite neutral paint color is Benjamin Moore Simply White
Photo by Decor Hint | Benjamin Moore Simply White

Tricorn Black by Sherwin Williams

Picked by Sarah | Ugly Duckling House

Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black neutral paint

“…seems to fit everything…”

“My favorite neutral is easily Tricorn Black by Sherwin Williams. I used it in my master bedroom to trim the windows and doors (not quite finished yet, but soon!). I have also used it repeatedly outside on my outdoor furniture!

“It’s black, but not a blue-black or green-black and seems to go well with warm and cool tones. It’s also not so deep that it distracts the way a true black would (I painted my stairs a darker black and this is much softer). It just seems to fit everything I paint it on!”


High Reflective White by Sherwin Williams

Picked by Cassity | Remodelaholic

Sherwin Williams High Reflective White neutral paint color

“White paint makes rooms feel bigger…”

“I am a big fan of plain ol’ bright white paint — straight from the shelf (shaken, of course!). I like an eggshell finish — just a little sheen, but not too much — or flat sheen. I have used it in every home we’ve remodeled, in pretty much any room we’ve had. Having a basic white wall really allows the freedom to add in warmer and brighter colors anywhere else — whether you paint your cabinets or doors or add colorful furniture and decor.

“For example, in our current home, we’ve painted all the doors navy blue and the mantel a nice flat gray to coordinate with our gray kitchen cabinets and wood-look flooring in our open floor plan. White paint makes rooms feel bigger, too. And if a wall feels too flat or plain, I loved the full-wall thin board and batten we installed in our Canyon House here for adding some interest and texture while staying neutral. And yes, we built that Dutch barn door AND curvy yellow Swedish clock from scratch — both tutorials are on Remodelaholic. 🙂 “

Cassity at Remodelaholic uses Sherwin Williams High Reflective White
Photo by Remodelaholic | Sherwin Williams High Reflective White

Revere Pewter by Benjamin Moore

Picked by Sara-Lynn | The Inspired Decorator

Revere Pewter by Benjamin Moore

“…a light gray with fun undertones…”

“We’ve all heard time and again that paint is the least expensive way to make a dramatic change. One can of paint will magically transform an entire room from one extreme to another. And yet most people stick to a neutral. It’s comforting, goes well with everything, and transitions so well in our open-concept homes. But even that’s easier said than done as undertones, shades, and lighting comes into play. If I was only allowed to use one neutral forevermore, I’d pick Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter.

“I’m in love with this chameleon. It’s a light grey with fun undertones to play around with. Lighting is key but I really believe this colour can fit into any home. Paired with woods it takes on a warm grey colouring. Paint it next to concrete and it’ll have more of a green undertone. It really adapts to its surroundings. So you can style Revere Pewter with both warm or cool accents, bright or muted! The choice is yours. Plus, I’m a big fan of the quality of Benjamin Moore’s paints for its colour fastness and durability. I’ve used Revere Pewter in bathrooms, dining rooms, living rooms, and entryways. It’s my go-to that I know I can count on.”

Sara-Lynn at The Inspired Decorator paints with Revere Pewter by Benjamin Moore
Photo by The Inspired Decorator | Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter

Phelps Putty by Hallman Lindsay

Picked by Della Hansmann | MidMod Midwest

Phelps Putty by Hallman Lindsay

“…it makes the original wood grain in my doors and trim look so lovely and warm!”

“The color that is ALL over my house is called Phelps Putty by Hallman Lindsay.

“I chose this light “dove-ish” grey because it makes the original wood grain in my doors and trim look so lovely and warm! I’ve used it in my basement, bathrooms, living room and office — so far. Having a default choice wall color which makes it easy to keep track of and have extra on hand for touch ups and updates. One funny thing about this particular paint is that it has a chameleon tendency to be a cooler grey in daylight and more of a warm taupe in warm incandescent light. So I always test a sample before adding it to another room.

“And really that’s my biggest piece of advice when choosing a paint color. Feel free to check out other people’s favorite options but TEST THEM AT HOME before you invest in gallons. It’s worth painting even a whole wall sized swatch to make sure you really love it, before you commit.

“Note: I know that choosing a Wisconsin-local paint company makes this a less than universal suggestion. That’s ok. You can just find your own local paint supplier. Ask around to find out where your paint is manufactured. Cans of paint are heavy, and carting it around the country doesn’t create a LOW carbon footprint. Also, I always opt for a low or no VOC paint product — both to go easy on the environment and so that I don’t fill up my own home with nasty smelling chemicals.

“Here’s me in my office reading chair. Background — lovely original door and … Phelps Putty walls.”

Della Hansmann at MidMod Midwest loves Hallman Lindsay Phelps Putty paint
Photo by MidMod Midwest | Hallman Lindsay Phelps Putty

Timeless White by PPG

Picked by Cara Newhart | Never Skip Brunch

PPG's Timeless White

“…light and airy.”

“My favorite neutral is white — it has unmatched power when it comes to brightening a space and giving you a clean, light background to anchor your fun pops of color. Choosing white is tricky, since different tinted whites can do crazy things with lighting and cast weird hues on your space. My favorite no-fail white is PPG’s Timeless White.

WHY I LOVE IT: I actually became a superfan of this white after HGTV’s Leanne Ford recommended it to me while she was a guest on my home design podcast, Make Space. Her signature style is white-on-white, so if there’s anyone who knows whites, it’s Leanne.

“This white is fantastic because it works for just about any space right out of the can — no need to visit the paint mixing counter. It also doesn’t cast any weird hues so it works in just about any space. You’d think if you want a super bright white space, you’d want to find the brightest white, but that’s not necessarily the case. Super bright whites often have a blue-ish tint that looks a little too vibrant and not at all natural. This white is all the brightness you need while still feeling a little earthy and organic.

WHERE TO USE IT: Anywhere! I painted my whole entire studio this shade of white since I’m bringing in a lot of other bold colors — hello yellow couch and pink velvet chairs. This white has transformed the space from dingy and dim to light and airy.”

Cara Newhart at Never Skip Brunch painted her studio PPG Timeless White
Photo by Never Skip Brunch | PPG Timeless White

Timid White by Benjamin Moore

Picked by Tara Besore | Hammer & a Headband

Benjamin Moore timid white paint color

“…like vanilla ice cream.”

Normally I would say Pratt & Lambert Shadow Beige is my favorite neutral. But since several gorgeous shades of greige have already been shared, I wanted to add Benjamin Moore’s Timid White to the mix.

This very warm white looks like vanilla ice cream. It feels right at home in my mid-century house, where I’ve used it to paint around a wall of windows and over the grasscloth pictured behind the bubble lamp below. It blends in with the older features of my home while letting focal points take center stage.

Related: See the ultimate guide to mid-century modern decor

Modern use of neutral paint colors
Benjamin Moore Timid White (center), Fallen Timber (bottom right) and Pratt & Lambert Shadow Beige (mid right)

Thank you to all of these creative ladies for sharing their top color choices and painting tips with us! I see several new colors I want to try now.

Best Neutral Paint Colors

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10 thoughts on “The Best Neutral Paint Colors: 11 Home Bloggers Share Their Favorites”

  1. Lots of interesting information on neutrals..love the names of the paints! I know choosing paint colors is not an easy decision ….I know our neutral white has a desert name and then since we live in the desert we went with different walls of desert tones to complement it. I love the colors you and Eric have chosen for your midcentury home..they all come together and complement each other.

    Reply
    • Thanks Judy! It can be so tough to find the right paint colors. I’m always happy when I go with my taupe or off white colors, but I’ve regretted some other choices like bright blue. 😀 I love the colors you chose, inside your house and outside with your pretty gazebo.

      Reply
  2. Super helpful! I’ve been wanting to go with a grayer-gray but the lighting and current accents don’t seem to match. This blog has given me some actionable ideas, much obliged!

    Reply
  3. I’m working with SW Gossamer Veil in the dining room. I have mixed emotions. It’s very light gray, with a wink of blue-green. I think it’s picking up the ugly orange trim in places and giving off a bit of pink near the trim. I am having paint OCD now wondering if I should continue around the corner to the family room, or darken it up a bit….

    Reply
    • Hmm…can you paint the orange trim? And I might try living with the wall you already painted for several days before painting more, to see if the color grows on you. But if it’s not working, maybe a warmer shade of gray would work better with the trim.

      Reply

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