We wrote about 2020 paint color trends recently. Gray continues to be popular, though it’s not as in vogue as it was 10 years ago. Today, many homeowners are looking to shades of white for their neutral-space palette.

If you’re considering painting interior spaces white, but are still unsure, you’ll feel better after reading about how to do it right. Many homeowners see a bright white space somewhere else and get scared off, but for starters, many of these white paints lack the right undertones.

White, after all, is almost never pure white. Even though the undertones are subtle, they’re there. And they make a difference.



Tips to painting a space white the right way



  1. The number-one trick to picking the right interior white is to assess what other colors you have in the space you’re painting. Is your sofa blue? Are your cabinets a burnt gold? When you shop for paint, find the white that uses those colors as undertones.
  2. Next, you have to think about your light source. The direction it’s coming from isn’t quite as important, but it does mean that different walls in the same space will look different depending on which is facing east, west, north and south. When you start shopping for paints, be sure to review the swatches during the morning, afternoon, and night in the room you plan to paint. And remember—once your whole space is painted white, that light is going to bounce around and the space will feel even brighter.
    EXPERT TIP: If you do have a ton of natural light in a space, be sure the undertone in your white paint is a little bit richer, or the space could end up blindingly bright.
  3. Consider the trim in the space, too. If you have white baseboards, for example, you want to be careful not to clash with that white and its undertones. Make them different enough shades of whites that it looks intentional.
  4. And finally, don’t forget about adjacent rooms that will be visible from the space you’re painting! If the neighboring space can be seen from inside the room and has warm colors, a cool-undertone white could clash. Try to match warm to warm and cool to cool, but only for spaces that are visible from the room you’re about to paint.


For over 20 years, Valor Home Services has been serving local homeowners in and around Edwardsville, Belleville and Shiloh. Painters can come in and completely transform a space, but knowing what color, undertones, and finish will work best still puts a lot of weight on you. If you do have additional questions, we’re always online to answer them. Please reach out!