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Pure White Paint Color – Sherwin Williams

Pure White Paint Color, by Sherwin Williams, is a go-to white paint color for walls, trim, exteriors, cabinets, and more.

Pure White is part of the Trendsetter, Dreamer, Pottery Barn – Fall/Winter 2020, Timeless White, 2020 Play, Acute Care Cool Foundations, ABC’s and 123’s, Inbe Tweens, Teen Space, 2021 Sanctuary collections from Sherwin Williams.

Basically, this means that it is extremely popular. It has been chosen by designers repeatedly as a no-fail white paint color.

What Color is Pure White?

Sherwin Williams’ Pure White is a very bright white paint color that is not overly stark. It is a good, fairly clean white that is not too white, but also doesn’t lean in any particular color.

Let me explain that statement a little bit.

It can be hard to define white paint colors in terms of what they are, without also discussing what they are not. For example, Pure White is not a bluish white, is not a yellow white, is not too stark, is not too cool, is not a soft white, and is not too warm.

I would guess that Sherwin Williams gave it the name Pure White because it is not any of those things.

It is, as the name suggests, just purely white (almost).

With that being said, all white paint colors (and actually just about all any color paint colors) have undertones.

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Pure White Undertones

Pure White is a very white paint color, but it does have a hint of a gray undertone. This gray undertone serves to ground the paint color, and keeps it from being too stark.

Pure White also has just the slightest nod towards a yellow undertone. This makes it come off as slightly warm, but not in any perceptible way.

Basically, the yellow in the formula for Pure White keeps it from going cool. It will likely never look yellow on your walls or trim though (unless you have very yellowy lights in the room).

Sherwin Williams Pure White almost perfectly straddles the line between warm and cool. This is why you will see some websites say it is a cool color and other websites say it is a warm shade.

Because it is so bright, and not a soft white, many will say it is cool. But, because it has that nod towards yellow, which is a warm color, it actually lands in the warm category of paint colors.

But it is really ever so slightly warm. This is why I think it is the perfect white paint color that goes with everything.

Pure White has an LRV, or Light Reflectance Value, of 84. Since the LRV scale goes from 1-100, this means that Pure White reflects a ton of light, and is a pretty white white (yes, I know I said ‘white’ twice).

Where Should I Use Pure White?

In my opinion…

Pure White is the best Sherwin Williams white paint color for trim (also called baseboards). On trim, it looks crisp, clean and bright, but not blue, yellow or dingy.

Pure White, by Sherwin Williams, on trim.
Pure White, by Sherwin Williams, on Window Frame, Trim and Chair Rail

Because it doesn’t have much in the way of undertones, it goes perfectly with almost any wall paint color. In fact, I list it on this post about the best white paint colors for every surface as the best white paint color for trim.

Pure White paint color ranks as one of the most popular paint colors for trim, alongside Extra White and Decorators’ White.

In addition, Sherwin Williams Pure White can also be used on walls, ceilings, exteriors, and doors.

Sherwin Williams Pure White Door and Trim
Pure White, by Sherwin Williams, on Door and Trim. Alabaster on Walls.

The 2020 White Paint Color Trend

Have you seen the white paint trend that is all over Pinterest right now? Many of these pictures are of a white paint like Pure White.

While I can’t say for certain that they actually Sherwin Williams’ Pure White, the crisp look they demonstrate, without being too cool or too warm, is entirely reminiscent of Pure White paint color.

I am going to compare Pure White to a few other popular white paint colors, but before I do, let’s talk for a minute out how to choose the best white paint color for your home.

Wondering how to pick the perfect paint color?

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I love Samplize squares because they are able to be placed on your wall and peel right off when you’re done. You can move these paint squares around your room to easily tell whether a color will go in your home, with your furnishings and accents, and with your lighting.

Plus, you can pick the perfect paint color without having to run to the store or open a can of paint, and you won’t be pressured into picking a color because you have a bunch of different sample colors painted on your walls!

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Pure White Paint Color Comparisons

Pure White vs. Sherwin Williams Extra White

Pure White vs. Extra White

For our first color comparison, lets look at Pure White and Extra White.

Pure White and Extra White are probably the most popular white paint colors for trim. And, both are great, but for different rooms.

While Pure White is has a touch of gray in it, Extra White carries a soft bluish undertone. This hint of blue puts Extra White firmly in the cool category of paints.

In a room with warm colors, I would also go with Pure White over Extra White. In a room with cool colors, I find that either Pure White or Extra White work. But, you want your room to have that crisp, clean look, you may want to choose Extra White.

Pure White vs. Alabaster

Pure White vs. Alabaster

For our next comparison, take a look at Pure White vs. Alabaster.

Alabaster is one of Sherwin Williams’ most popular paint colors. Click on this link to learn more about the paint color Alabaster.

As you can see from the picture, both Pure White and Alabaster have hints of gray in them, but Alabaster has a lot more yellow or beige in it than Pure White does.

This makes Alabaster come off as softer, warmer and much less crisp than Pure White. Alabaster is a great trim or wall color if you want to warm up a room, but it won’t go as well in a room with cool accents.

In addition, if you want your trim or walls to look like a crisp white, you will want to paint them Pure White over Alabaster.

Pure White vs. High Reflective White

Pure White vs. High Reflective White

Next, take a look at Pure White vs. High Reflective White.

High Reflective White is probably the whitest white paint color you can pick. It doesn’t have really any undertones, and it is bright bright bright.

Lest you think that this means it is the perfect white, hold on. I have been told that it doesn’t cover very well. I haven’t tried it on my own, so I can’t verify, but you may want to ask at Sherwin Williams before you purchase a big can of it.

Pure White vs. Snowbound

Pure White, by Sherwin Williams, vs. Snowbound

For one last color comparison, let’s look at Pure White and Snowbound.

Snowbound is a cool white with gray undertones. It has an LRV of 83 (Pure White’s LRV is 84), and is a very similar depth of paint color to Pure White.

Snowbound is a very popular paint color for walls and trim, and they are actually pretty similar colors. Where they differ is that Pure White has that touch of yellow, where Snowbound does not.

If you want a cool paint color with no warmth, but is not particularly stark, Snowbound might be a good choice for you. Click here to read more about Sherwin Williams Snowbound.

Final Thoughts on Sherwin Williams Pure White Paint Color

Pure White is one of my favorite Sherwin Williams paint colors because of its versatility. It is a great color for trim, crown molding, walls, exteriors, cabinets, furniture, and more. Plus, it can coordinate with either warm or cool paint color and accents, because it really straddles the line between warm and cool.

When you want a no-fail white paint color, strongly consider Pure White for your home.

If you’re looking to hire someone to paint your home, you can be connected with a painting professional in your area by clicking here!

Sherwin Williams Pure White

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Monica Vayda

Thursday 7th of January 2021

I am thinking of painting the exterior of my home in Sherwin Williams Pure White. What color would you suggest for the trim?

Thank you!

Dotty

Tuesday 12th of January 2021

@Lauren,

This is so funny. Literally every color you’re naming are the colors for my new build. The stucco/garage is snowbound and the shutters/front door is tricorn black. The walls/cabinets are pure white. The island I elected to do “On the Rocks“, just to break up the monotony of all the white. (:

Lauren

Friday 8th of January 2021

Hi Monica! I love dark trim with white exteriors, so Iron Ore or Tricorn Black are nice!

Doris Anderson

Saturday 2nd of January 2021

Hi Lauren We had our upper kitchen cabinets painted High Reflective White and lower cabinets Hale Navy. I was trying to pick a light grey color for walls. We have tried samples of Reflection and Rhinestone paint. Still not sure about them. Another option could be a white. Would Pure White look ok with the High Reflective White? My kitchen faces east with lots of morning light. I never thought choosing a paint could take so much time or research. Any help would be so appreciated. Thanks Doris

Lauren

Wednesday 6th of January 2021

Hi Doris! Sounds like the kitchen is going to be really lovely! If you are looking for a good gray, you could consider Crushed Ice or Repose Gray. They're both really nice gray paint shades. For a white, Pure White will be find with High Reflective White. It will have a bit more color in it (just a smidge), as it has a tiny bit of gray in the undertones. It will still look stark white though, but not as bright as your cabinets. Picking paint colors can be tricky, but you've picked some great ones! Enjoy your updated kitchen :)

Michele

Sunday 13th of December 2020

Hi there, what would you recommend for trim if we are painting the walls Pure White? Do you know how SW Builder’s Masterpiece 5820 would match up? Only asking because we have that available to us for free and I know my husband would love if I chose that one. 😂 Thanks!

Lauren

Thursday 17th of December 2020

Hi Michele! Unfortunately, I'm not familiar with Builder's Masterpiece as a color. From what I can tell, that is a paint type. So I think that you could possibly tint it to Pure White. Look into that! Good luck :).

kim walker

Saturday 28th of November 2020

H E L P!!! My goodness the choices of WHITE paint!! My house is 1969 ranch style with red brick on the front and faces WEST. I'm considering updating the brick with either GERMAN smearing or a white wash and painting house white. So far everything i try turns yellow in front (west) but is blinding out back around pool (east) from direct sun. Im gonna run go get a sample of PURE WHITE (SW) what would you recommend for trim? To brighten my brick do i also use PURE WHITE as well or would you recommend something else for brick? PLEASE HELP! My phone,car, and house is loaded with paint samples and my eyes are crossing! How can i send you a picture of my house? Sure would appreciate your help KW

Lauren

Monday 7th of December 2020

Hi! White paint can be such a puzzle! It all looks white until you compare it to other whites, and then it looks yellow, or beige, or gray, etc. Did you get your sample of Pure White yet? Another great white is Snowbound. It has a little less warmth to it, so it probably won't look as yellow in the front. I have a whole review on Snowbound here. If the whites are just too blinding in the back, check out a color like Pearly White, which will look pretty white outside but has a bit more color to it. For the brick whitewashing, I would use the same white that you choose for the house (heavily watered down of course), because then you wont run into any undertone issues. You can shoot me an email at loveremodeled@gmail.com. I know the struggle of picking a white paint color. Hope this helps!

Leslie Hosmer

Tuesday 17th of November 2020

Hi Lauren, I love your remodels! I have been doing many at my own house and would love your opinion. I noticed in the photos of your kitchen your baseboard trim is white and your quarter round is wood that coordinates with the floor,I personally love the way it looks and that’s was my plan for my house. I have had several people tell me that is not right or not how it is supposed to be. I will make the decision that I am happy with, but I was very happy to see yours done that way.

Lauren

Tuesday 17th of November 2020

Hi Leslie! Thanks so much for your sweet words! As for the quarter round, there isn't really a right or wrong way to do it. I think that traditionally, they used wood quarter round on a wood floor. But more recently, people have shifted to white quarter round on wood floors. I have wood quarter round on my first floor and white (with wood look luxury vinyl plank flooring) on my second. I agree with you - make the decision that makes you happy :). Have fun with your remodels!