Interior Design Love Paint

Looking for a white paint?

Are you looking for a white paint but don’t know where to start? Yes, I’ve been there done that! It’s tricky to get it right (and don’t even start me on the colour grey!). Today I have a list of some white paints you might like to consider. The first thing you will need to decide on is whether you are after a COOL white or a WARM white. Once you decide which is your preference you can start to limit your choices.

Here are the 2 broken down with a few ideas for you…

Cool Whites

Cool whites are colours that have a blue, grey or green undertone. Cool colours work well in more modern homes. Usually rooms which are filled in natural light can benefit from a cool white. They offer a crisp, sleek and elegant look.

See some examples below.

Crisp White Taubmans – probably the truest white. This is my colour at home.

Crisp White Taubmans

Lexicon Dulux – this room below was done in half strength (don’t forget that if you narrow your paint choices down that you can also ask for them to be in a half-tint if you think it’s a little too grey/blue).

lexicon

Infinity White British Paints – gorgeous colour – a little hint of grey, but not too much.

Infinity White British Paints

Vivid White Dulux – bright and light.

Vivid White Dulux

Extra White Sherwin-Williams – looks great in a large space.

Extra White Sherwin-Williams

Manhattan Snow Wattyl – Amie and I used this colour in our house at The Block. We loved it!

manhattan snow wattyl

Warm Whites

Warm whites are colours with yellow, red and brown undertones. They are cosy and inviting more suited to traditional styling.

See some examples below.

Whisper White Dulux – a little bit warmer with a slight cream undertone.

Whisper White Dulux

Linen White Wattyl – also a little creamer and looks great bright white gloss accents.

Linen White Wattyl

Love Note British Paints – creamy with the slightest pink tone.

Love Note British Paints

Antique White USA Dulux – I did my last house in this. Not too creamy – just not as stark as a cool white. This is my favourite warm white paint colour.

Antique White USA dulux

Natural White Dulux – fresh brown undertone – great with timber furniture.

Natural White Dulux

White Beam British Paints – natural and inviting.

White Beam British Paints

TIPS when choosing:

  • Hold the swatch away from other swatches (other colours can throw it off).
  • Don’t choose your colour based on the swatch laying down – make sure it’s upright.
  • Buy a piece of plaster board and paint that using your colour (don’t put more than one colour on a board, create new boards per colour) and rest them in your rooms to see how they look at different times of the day.
  • Think about the lighting in your room. Less light might mean your paint choice can be a little brighter/lighter or with half strength tint.
  • Think about the furniture in your room. Black furniture looks better with a cooler colour, timber furniture might look better with a warmer white.

Do you have a favourite white? Or any tips for selecting white paint?

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36 Comments

  • Reply
    Bianca Ward
    February 9, 2016 at 12:45 pm

    I wish I had seen this 5 minutes ago. I just had a lady in looking to match a white, would have been handy????

  • Reply
    Kirsty McCann Leckie
    February 9, 2016 at 1:43 pm

    Angus Leckie

  • Reply
    Sum
    February 9, 2016 at 2:46 pm

    Thanks so much for this info. We are building and I was scared off using white because I thought it would look to cold, but all your suggestions on the warm whites are great! I think I may go a warm white vs the 1/4 strength hog bristle I thought I was going to go. Thanks 🙂

  • Reply
    Jorja Thompson
    February 9, 2016 at 3:43 pm

    Did you seriously read my mind Katrina, thank you so much!! I was so going to ask you to do a blog on this one..
    Aaron check this out please and get your roller ready ????????

  • Reply
    Georgia Imhoff
    February 9, 2016 at 6:35 pm

    Andrew Flanders – thought of you Flash !

  • Reply
    Jonas Bel
    February 9, 2016 at 6:42 pm

    Where were you 6 months ago when I was updating my bedroom paint to white? ????
    We went with Antique white USA. Different to swatch but we still like it ????

    Now to do living areas ????

  • Reply
    Jonas Bel
    February 9, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    Phill

  • Reply
    Jennie Meiklejohn
    February 9, 2016 at 10:52 pm

    Perfect timing. I picked up some white samples a few days ago to paint my new office!

  • Reply
    Susan
    February 10, 2016 at 6:10 am

    Oh could you do this for greys please. I am having a hard time choosing

    • Reply
      Katrina
      February 11, 2016 at 12:48 pm

      Ok sure, I’ll get something written up 🙂

      • Reply
        Michelle
        October 28, 2016 at 10:20 pm

        This is such a great blog about whites! Thanks! But some greys would be awesome….. Please!

  • Reply
    Jennie
    February 18, 2016 at 10:12 am

    I’ve had to re-read your post Katrina. The whites are doing my head in! At least I’ve now narrowed it down to the warm whites …..

  • Reply
    Beck Rudd Adler
    February 19, 2016 at 5:28 am

    Jo McInnes

  • Reply
    Jo Murrell
    April 24, 2016 at 4:16 pm

    Have just finished painting 3rd bedroom in American antique white. Looks wonderful….. (the room was blue for over 10 years)

  • Reply
    Shelly Ramsey
    April 24, 2016 at 5:12 pm

    Love Antique White USA, painted most of the house in this colour 9 years ago…hubby will kill me when I say its time to repaint the house…still think we will go the Antique White USA

  • Reply
    Nicole Watson
    April 25, 2016 at 3:55 pm

    Painting our house in Dulux Natural White (over the 1/2 strength Hog Bristle) & I absolutely LOVE it.. So fresh & clean !!

  • Reply
    Jules
    August 4, 2016 at 8:26 pm

    We’ve just bought an older home and are keeping the timber skirtings, doors/windows. I already have all the swatches you mentioned up on my wall and have no idea.

    Any recommendations (or photo examples) with timber trims???

    • Reply
      Donna
      August 7, 2016 at 4:56 pm

      Hi Jules, I used Dulux natural white in our 1930s house with all original wood floors, trim, and Windows. Looks great, really refreshed the rooms but didn’t look too stark next to the wood. Good luck. Donna.

  • Reply
    Alex
    August 14, 2016 at 3:36 pm

    We are looking to paint the kids playroom white – it’s very sunny and the creamy neutral it is currently painted (I’d guess antique white USA) looks really yellow. The room will also have a blackboard wall, so leaning towards cool whites to go with black but then wondering if it will look odd looking through from the ‘warmer’ coloured living spaces? What would you suggest?

  • Reply
    Karen
    October 11, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    Hi, I am tossing up between Dulux Mt Aspiring and Dulux Rottnest for our new place. Most of the cabinets are Polar White and the floor will be spotted gum. Side by side Mt Aspiring looks like half strength Rottnest. I want a clean but slightly warm look and the main living area faces north. Suggestions would be appreciated.

  • Reply
    Steve
    October 17, 2016 at 5:39 pm

    We painted walls in Whisper White and the ceilings in Dulux Ceiling Paint (Lexicon 1/4) .
    Arcs, skirts , and windows all in Lexicon Full Gloss Enamel. Looks fantastic

  • Reply
    Ruth Thompson
    November 2, 2016 at 9:40 pm

    Oh Katrina, so many choices and little pots all over the place. Have a an old farm house where every room. Limed white and looking got change. Reading is Natural white seemed lovely and refreshing but
    1) what colour gif all the doors and trims?? And
    2) recommended New York for trims and doors looks pink 🙁 and vivid white looked as if I have no imagination…. so true 🙁

    • Reply
      Ruth Thompson
      November 2, 2016 at 9:42 pm

      Sorry about typos. Didn’t check the darn predictive text. Sorry

  • Reply
    Monika
    November 8, 2016 at 12:28 pm

    Good morning Katrina, I’m in a desperate need of advice. I’m trying to decide what shade of white to choose for our apartment. I was all set to go with half strength of Dulux Terrace White and then I started to read different blogs and I’m back to square one. I’m now thinking of Dulux Vivid White. Our apartment doesn’t get much natural light due to all the tall trees surrounding us and there is the carpet that is gray. I don’t like for the paint to throw any undertone of purple, pink or blue. I think Vivid White would brighten the place up. I’m after a contemporary look. Could you please help what colour to choose? Thank you so much.

    • Reply
      Katrina
      November 8, 2016 at 2:34 pm

      Vivid white is perfect! Or Lexicon 1/4 strength. I’ve seen that yesterday and it’s similar to vivid white but does have a slight colour. Terrace White is quite grey. Hope that helps a bit!

  • Reply
    Nicki
    December 5, 2016 at 8:07 pm

    Hi Katrina I want to paint my walls white but there are too many whites to choose and I can’t decide Currently the walls are mint My favorite brand is Dulux. Our furniture are brown /black and carpet and tiles are forest green. The frames around the windows are natural timber and so are our doors What do you recommend.

  • Reply
    Calli Ryan
    March 16, 2017 at 6:55 am

    We have just sat down with a Colour Consultant for help in choosing a white for our home. Too many choices….very overwhelming.

  • Reply
    Tracey Buerckner
    March 16, 2017 at 7:53 am

    This might help me Tania Botha – isn’t it funny when things pop up just after you talk about them!

    • Reply
      Tania Botha
      March 16, 2017 at 7:56 am

      Ha ha ha! How funny, it is like Facebook reads your mind sometimes doesn’t it! Hopefully it does help xx

  • Reply
    Carolyn Doyle
    March 16, 2017 at 8:07 am

    Just read this post on your site, great post!!! and yes I agree…you now have to do one on grey. 🙂

  • Reply
    Tanya Slack-Smith
    March 16, 2017 at 10:13 am

    but white is just white!!! Why do we have to choose!!!

  • Reply
    Samantha Somerville
    March 17, 2017 at 8:18 am

    I have been meaning to tell you that I have just used Infinity White on a unit I’ve renovated and I got the idea from this article. I love the colour! It’s exactly what I was looking for xx

  • Reply
    Julie
    March 19, 2017 at 12:45 pm

    Katrina, I have just found this post and the timing is perfect. We are renovating a 50’s weatherboard house and our kitchen cabinets a cool white gloss and the splash back is soft grey. The dining and family room that adjoin the kitchen don’t get a lot of natural light and I want this area to look bright and fresh. But I also don’t want it to look to sterile. Our skirting boards and doors have been painted in lexicon half strength but I am not sure what colour to paint the walls now. Would something like natural white look too warm against the lexicon half strength doors and skirts. Also when painting a room white do you still paint the ceilings ceiling white?

  • Reply
    Jan
    April 2, 2017 at 6:23 pm

    Hello…Whisper white v’s Antique white USA?? I thought antique looked creamier, but your advice above says otherwise…is there much in it do you thonk..varying degrees of light throughout but mostly, east and west facing..

  • Reply
    Heather
    April 4, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    Hi Katrina. My dilemma is blocking my thinking processes. Please can you help me?

    The main bedroom is situated in the SE corner of our Queenslander and is enclosed on two sides by sleepouts with french doors. There is very little natural light. Our furnishings are minimal with a focus on warm, natural textiles. I do love the moodiness of the room which is currently painted in Wattyl Metropolitan 1/4 strength with contrasting ceiling and trim (previous owners’ choice). However, we’re moving interstate as soon as our house sells, and I would like to give this room the appearance of being light and bright and inviting, despite the limitations. I’ve read that warm whites work well in rooms with minimal natural light, and I am hoping that you will be kind enough to give me some pointers. Our paint preferences are Resene, Porters Paints or Wattyl. Many, many thanks! ~ heather

  • Reply
    Leeanne
    April 27, 2017 at 12:22 am

    Hi … i need help.. i painted the ceilings lexicon half and the walls white exchange half.. now need to paint the kitchens cuboards in white. Which white should i go for ? still unsure of my splash back color to

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