Lots of things can trick your eye or sway you when you're looking at wall colors: the surface next to the swatch you're holding, the border on the paint strip, even the paint's name, says Tara Mangini: "People are typically drawn to gray-tone whites because they seem crisp and clean. But on a wall, they can make the room feel icy, so a creamier white is often a better choice. Paint large test patches—about three feet square—and live with them for a few days before you decide."
Here, three shades the experts think are just right:
“Seed Pearl by Pratt & Lambert is on the greener-bluer side, which makes it super calming. Use it in a sun-filled bathroom or guest room or any other spot you want to feel clean and visually uncluttered.” —Emily Henderson, interior designer in Los Angeles and author of Styled.
“We love White Heat by Dunn-Edwards, especially for a living room. It’s crisp but also has a touch of warm undertones, so it still feels inviting instead of stark.” —Todd Nickey snd Amy Kehoe, co-owners of Nickey Kehoe, Inc., an interior-design firm in Los Angeles.
“Super White by Benjamin Moore is a bright white that bounces light around. You can use it on more than just walls—it’s great for ceilings, cabinetry, and moldings, too. I’ve even painted a floor this color.” —Shea Mcgee, designer and cofounder of Studio McGee, in Salt Lake City.