Looking for the best neutral paint colors for your home?  I have a few suggestions with my tried and true, my go-to, my best neutral paint colors that I’ve tried over and over and over again.  Here’s a list of the best neutral paint colors on the planet.

Today is all about the paint.

Before we get started, I just want you to know that if you are sitting at your house drinking coffee and thinking about today and looking around and your room happens to mention that it might like a make-over…

…this is the post for you.


The easiest, simplest way to change up a room is to change the paint color.

Please tell me you understand.

Please tell me you’ve stood in front of a blank wall with a paintbrush and painted that first coat of new paint…

…and sighed.

Oh, good.  Me, too.  Will you and your paint can please come sit by me?

If painting and refreshing and reworking a room is in your future for spring, I wrote a great post on how to pick a paint color.

If picking a paint color still seems overwhelming?  No worries friend.  You got this.

I’ve put together 10 of the best neutral paint colors.

And the best part?

I’ve already tried them all to make sure they are perfect.

Here’s my list.

Before we go any farther, I want to clarify something.

Paint colors do NOT look the same on the computer screen.

Actually, paint colors don’t even look the same in different rooms.  How many times have you been to someone’s home and found the perfect paint color on their wall and rushed to the store and bought it and brought it home and painted it on your wall and IT DIDN’T work.  That’s because paint can change color slightly depending on the height of your ceilings and the amount of natural light in your space or the color of your floors.

That’s why these paint colors are so great.  That’s why they are the best neutral paint colors.

I have used them in so many different rooms and spaces and places and cities and towns and houses at the end of country roads.

They haven’t let me down yet.


Here’s what these paint colors look like in my rooms

Living Room:  SW Alabaster

It’s one of my favorite whites.  It’s hard to tell from the computer screen, but it has the best hint of gray and a tiny bit of creaminess.

When you paint it in a room, it feels sophisticated and warm and classic.

It’s the color that you are looking for when you just can’t get the white right.

Kitchen:  SW Extra White

This is an awesome trim color, too.

When I pick it for trim, I choose a semi-gloss finish which reflects light and whitens it even more.

This is also my go-to white when the room doesn’t get a lot of natural light.

SW Extra White is the perfect white neutral without any undertones.

It’s a true white that lightens and brightens a space.

Laundry Room:  SW Agreeable Gray

SW Agreeable Gray is cousins with SW Repose Gray (that we’ll talk about a little later on).

It has a little bit more of a khaki undertone to it and plays well in the sandbox with all the other neutrals we’ve mentioned.

This is the laundry room that’s just off the kitchen pained SW Extra White.

Family room:  SW Mindful Gray

Ahhh.  SW Mindful Gray.  How do I love thee?  Let me count the ways.

This is my first gray love.

I met him 10 years ago and I still adore him just as much.

He’s the perfect mix of gray and greige and khaki.

One quick note—SW Mindful Gray can easily go lighter or darker depending on the natural light in the space.

This family room gets quite a bit of natural light, so it looks lighter in our family room.

Office and entryway:  SW Sandbar

This is probably my newest favorite color.

I hadn’t met it until I moved into the new house and needed a neutral beige/khaki.

Meet SW Sandbar.

It is actually so much lighter than it appears on the color circle.

It’s truly the color of drop cloth.

I’ve painted the entire entry as well as the office with it.

downstairs bath:  SW Repose Gray

This is one of my favorite soft grays.

Depending on the light, it’s got the sweetest hint of blue.

I’ve used it in several bathrooms and it never disappoints.

It’s the perfect neutral for our downstairs bath against all the white.

I hope you enjoyed the paint color tour.

I hope you find a little inspiration for your spring refresh.

I hope you are inspired and encouraged and ready to take on a new project.

But most importantly?


I hope you discover the perfect neutral to introduce to your home. 🙂

PS  Have any paint color questions?  Let’s discuss in the comments.

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  1. Image for Debra Masek Debra Masek

    This post came at exactly the right time!! Thank you for sharing all the information to get a better idea of the colors and how/where you used them!!! I'm calling my painter in the next couple days.

  2. Image for Jenn Jenn

    This was fun! I love a creamy white, but the color I used throughout most of my house looks yellow against the white cabinets in my kitchen. I have lived with it for a while now, trying to like it, but it's just getting on my nerves! I am thinking one of these with the grey undertone might be better. Thanks for the tips!


    Love all of them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Have used most of them in our California home-love the play of light on them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks for the hints!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Image for Dianne Miley Dianne Miley

    My living room is SW Alabaster too! Love Sherwin Williams. We have 3 of them in my town and my cousin works for SW. He's in a different state, but gave me a complete paint chip collection in a plastic do-hickey thing when we were repainting our entire house before moving. (I still have it.) And I won an hour with a professional interior designer at a silent auction for a nonprofit that helped single moms. I made a donation to a great organization and enjoyed an awesome hour of decorating heaven and she recommended Alabaster for my living room walls. Now I need to try SW Agreeable Gray for the laundry room because mine looks lavender. Ugh. Thanks for the great tips, as always! :)

  5. Image for Rebecca Rebecca

    Where did u use the anonymous grey? Hdvd used all the colors you just here. Like them all. Have to add one though. Behr has a Khaki shade that I like a lot. Painted the living room twice in this shade.

  6. Image for Celeste Celeste

    Back in the 90's, I stood in front of a wall with brush in hand and thought I was applying a warm camel to the dining room. Instead it was a baby poop brown. I knew right away it was horrible, but I was reluctant to tell my hubby I had bought the wrong color. Fortunately, when I finally got up the courage to admit it was wrong, he said he thought the same thing when he first saw it. Phew! Repainted asap. I now have SW Agreeable Gray in the LR/DR and I love it. I also recently chose the slightly lighter SW Egret White for my basement. I have a custom gray-blue for the kitchen and Master ceiling that SW was so helpful to mix for me. I have used it in several homes because it is MY color.

  7. Image for Kelly Kelly

    I need to paint my house and this came at a good time (if it ever stops raining in GA). I'm thinking about samples of the alabaster and extra white. My living room gets very little natural light. The white on the walls has yellowed over the years. It probably looked great when it was newly painted, I can't remember now! I do remember going to our pastor's home and thinking it was a lovely color, kind of a yellow/tan that was popular several years ago. Thank goodness I got a sample of the paint before I painted. It looked like I smeared mud on my wall! That is probably why I've always stayed with mostly shades of white in my house!

  8. Image for Jolyn Jolyn

    Love these colors! My go-to for the last 4 years has been Benjamin Moore's Revere Pewter HC-172, but I have Sherwin Williams mix it, as I've just had better luck with their paints. I'm thinking of agreeable gray for my laundry room, though...

  9. Image for Brandy Low Brandy Low

    I already have my painting clothes laid out for Spring Break! Can you tell I’m excited? 😁 My daughter Symphony and I are redoing her bedroom and my office. She wanted a beautiful gray. Now I have amazing swatches and pics to show her. Thanks sweet friend! 🥰 Brandy

  10. Image for Elaine Elaine

    I’m looking for recommendations on a neutral, but cozy, shade of blue for a bedroom, would welcome any suggestions. Thanks

  11. Image for Carrie Carrie

    In the tiny brick ranch we’ve painted the bathroom Alabaster....love!!! Hubs wanted a bit deeper contrast so we chose SW KILIM BEIGE with SW EXTRA WHITE for ceiling and trim in the rest of the house...next step: drapes....I’m looking at you, drop cloth! ;)

  12. Image for Debbie Byrd Debbie Byrd

    Wonderful post!! just in time. I am about to start a Reno on my kitchen and am looking for the perfect (barely gray) to go with my white cabinets!! Once again you nailed it.

  13. Image for Missy Missy

    We are finally getting ready to paint our storm damaged house and we're looking for a light gray with a slight blue undertone (no khaki) for the walls (bright white trim). Any recommendations?

    1. Image for Becca Becca

      Winni, I used Sandbar with white mixed in ( 75% white, 25% pigment) for a great room that has very little natural light. What I love is that it is still has warm undertones. But the original chip is not that dark in person.

  14. Image for Teresa Teresa

    This past December, I was on a Christmas house tour and saw the most beautiful neutral color on the living room/dining/kitchen walls. Thankfully, the home had just been recently renovated and the decorator was there. I asked what color was used and he said it was SW Aesthetic White. It has a beautiful gray undertone and I have been itching to try it! I also love BM Edgecombe Gray which is one shade lighter than Revere Pewter but both are beautiful neutral colors.

  15. Image for Paula Hardin Paula Hardin

    In the process of picking a wall color for our 2 story foyer that faces North side of the house. Very little sunlight 😢 Also, there is soooo much wood trim and many doors. The current color on the trim is an off white with a yellowy undertone 😩 I really don’t want to paint all the trim again but any white or gray I pick for the walls really makes the current trim look awful. Any suggestions?

  16. Image for Cindy Cindy

    I just recently gave up my gold wall paint and painted most of my rooms SW Worldly Gray and I love it. It really brightened the rooms and made the accessories pop. Even my dark wood cabinets looked good. I eventually plan to paint them white, but will enjoy them as they are a little longer. And you are right, the Worldly Gray looks different in each room.

  17. Image for Beth Minger Beth Minger

    We currently have Repose Gray in our kitchen and living room - love it!! My niece just used SW Ellie all through her new home - lots of light and white trim, dark wood doors - it would have scared me but it all looks beautiful. I was impressed that she was able to combine stained wood and painted trim - always wanted to try that. Thanks for sharing the colors!

  18. Image for Nan, Odessa,, DE Nan, Odessa,, DE

    Thank you! Solves lots of mysteries. How about another play list for us gals?????????????? So enjoyed the Christmas playlist.

  19. Image for Peg Peg

    Repose Gray - repose - noun - a state of rest, sleep or tranquility. Your whole house has me in a state of repose!!! xoxoxo

  20. Image for Cheryl Cheryl

    HI, Karianne. You know that I am truly a fan! I love the paint colors. My house is painted repose grey and I'm using navy and white as my accents. I saw the basket in your post and absolutely loved it - until I saw the price! Would you do a few posts with accents similar to yours that can be bought by folks on a budget? (I understand that you have advertising sponsors and that you may not actually buy all of these things, either.) Thanks!

  21. Image for Maru Maru

    So pretty! You’re right! You can’t go wrong with these neutrals! They are so basic with just enough color to give big charm! I’m loving soft greys right now! Something I never thought would be! So fun!

  22. Image for Charlotte Snodgrass Charlotte Snodgrass

    I love the SW Repose Gray. It is beautiful in your bath! We have five of the colors listed in our home but I'd like to try the Repose Gray now! Love your blog, especially your Saturday morning Thistlekeeping. It's like a favorite newspaper!!!!

  23. Image for vicky vicky

    Dear Friend, My little seeester and I have been using Sandbar for a few years. Have some looong stories about that color and God's hand in selections but won't go into it. We have used several colors on your list. I love your blog. And I just ordered your book at BN. Have a great day.

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