Choosing a trim color can be hard, but I’m here to help you find the best Sherwin Williams white paint color for your interior trim.
As you’re already aware, not all whites are created equal. Having “white” in its name doesn’t necessarily make it a good trim color.
Some whites have entirely too much color in them and won’t give you that fresh, crisp look you’re going for. Even if you want to avoid getting too bright, you still need to watch out for certain undertones.
To help simplify the search, I’ve put together this guide to choosing a trim paint, which includes four of the most popular whites available at Sherwin Williams.
We’ll also cover a handful of whites to avoid, plus a few tips to help you decide which white works best in YOUR house, and then I’ll answer a few frequently asked questions.
But first…should you paint your trim white?
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Should You Paint Your Trim White?
White trim will give your space a clean, modern look and it pairs well with almost any color. Of course, before painting your trim white, you’ll want to get some samples to see how it looks in your space — because white isn’t merely white.
There are a number of different undertones in white paints (but you must already know that since you’re here reading this article!).
We’ll get to the best Sherwin Williams white paint colors for interior trim shortly — as well as a few that you should avoid.
Before we get to that, though….
If your trim looks outdated, and you don’t want to replace all of it, you have a few different options:
- Paint your trim with white paint.
- Stain it in a darker color.
- Take the attention off of your trim with other changes.
That last one simply means: changing up your wall color to complement the wood tone, updating furniture, or drawing the eye away from the trim and toward a focal point, such as a larger piece of artwork.
That does take a certain knack, however, and for most people, it’s simply easier to paint it with a fresh coat of white. Nothing wrong with that!
So, what are the four best whites?
What is the Best Sherwin Williams White for Trim?
Nominees for the best Sherwin Williams white paint color for interior trim include:
- High Reflective White SW 7757 (order a sample)
- Alabaster SW 7008 (order a sample)
- Snowbound SW 7004 (order a sample)
- Pure White SW 7005 (order a sample)
Next to each of these Sherwin Williams whites, you’ll notice that I’ve included links to Samplize, where you can order a sample made with two coats of real paint, so that you can check it out in your home’s lighting (rather than relying on your device’s screen and being sadly disappointed).
These peel-and-stick samples are awesome because:
- They’re made with real paint and are color correct.
- They’re cost effective and environmentally friendly.
- They arrive at your doorstep in just 1-3 days.
Now we’ll go over each of these paint colors in a little more detail. (Make sure you stick around to find out which Sherwin Williams whites you should AVOID when painting your trim!)
Quick Note: LRV = Light Reflectance Value (measures the percentage of light a paint reflects; a higher LRV means it reflects a lot of light)
With a LRV of 93, High Reflective White SW 7757 is the whitest white in Sherwin Williams’ collection. It does, however, have a slight touch of warmness to it without looking yellow.
All these things together make it a gorgeous color for not only your trim, but for your kitchen cabinets, as well.
It’s a nice clean white that, while it does lean slightly warmer, pairs well with cooler colors and with gray materials. Keep in mind that it could pick up on the colors around it, and it could look a little too stark against a wall or floor that is a really warm hue with golden undertones.
If you’re looking for an off-white, Alabaster SW 7008 is another beautiful Sherwin Williams trim color with a LRV 82. It’s a softer white with light cream/pale green undertones.
In addition to trim, Alabaster looks beautiful on the walls (Alabaster painted shiplap could make a beautiful accent wall). It typically works best with other colors that have warm undertones.
It looks beautiful in both North and South facing rooms, although it will look even warmer in South or West-facing evening light.
Snowbound SW 7004, with a LRV 83, just barely makes it into the white category. It’s a softer white with pinkish undertones. It could pair well with cooler hues, but I’d stay far away from any whites or colors with yellow undertones.
If you plan on painting the walls and trim white, then Snowbound could be a good choice for both (for a little depth, go with a semi-gloss paint finish for trim and satin on the walls).
Snowbound is a highly popular color, although it’s pretty finicky, so you’ll want to carefully consider your wall colors and the other materials when using it as a trim or cabinet paint color!
Pure White SW 7005 is an incredibly versatile, soft white that is neither stark nor creamy. It has the slightest touch of black and yellow, softening it up without leaning towards off-white at all.
This one picks up color from its surroundings, and can look vastly different depending on its surroundings, time of day, and even the type of light it reflects.
It’s a gorgeous color choice for both trim and cabinets, and even works wonderfully on the walls.
Avoid These Sherwin Williams White Paint Colors
While these are certainly beautiful (and popular) options, they might be better suited for your walls.
Avoid these whites when painting your trim:
- Creamy SW 7012
- Roman Column SW 7562
- Antique White SW 6119
- Dover White SW 6385
- Extra White SW 7006
If you’re considering any of these colors for your trim, you might notice that off-whites like Creamy and even the ever-so-popular Extra White are hard to pair up with wall colors. Due to their undertones, they just aren’t nice, clean whites like the four recommendations above.
How Do You Choose White Trim Paint?
Now that we’ve gone over four great options for your white Sherwin Williams interior trim, you might be wondering, “How do I narrow it down to just one?!”.
- Sample, sample, sample.
- Complement your home’s existing colors.
- Consider your lighting.
First of all, I would grab a peel-and-stick sample of each white you’re considering (you’ll find direct links to each color above). I promise, this way is much more cost effective than buying all of the paint and painting materials, plus it’ll save you a trip to the store.
Once you have your samples, bring them from room to room, looking at each of them in the different types of lighting. Make sure to do this several times throughout the day because your lighting will change significantly as the sun moves from East to West.
Look at it from different angles and place it next to all of your home’s materials — anything that you don’t plan on replacing. If you’re not going to re-paint the walls, then you’ll definitely want to make sure your white complements the wall color.
Once you’ve settled on a favorite, you might still want to start with just one can of paint and test it out, either on an extra scrap of trim or in an inconspicuous area. Apply a couple of coats, let it dry, and then take another look to make sure you really want it throughout the entire house.
Do I Need to Paint All Trim the Same White?
As a general rule, any trim that you plan on painting should be painted the same white color for a cohesive look. You would also want to paint any doors and cabinets in this white as well.
Of course, this is a huge generalization. You might have some areas of the house where you would rather leave the trim in its dark stained color or you might want to paint your cabinets in a navy blue.
However, when choosing your trim color, select it with the idea that this is your home’s main white, and make sure it plays well with any existing materials and paint colors that you don’t plan to change out.
You might also want to change it up in personal spaces, such as bedrooms, and go for a totally different look — that’s absolutely okay. Or, you might want to create two entirely different looks between two different levels in the house.
The idea behind choosing one white color for all of the trim is to keep everything simple and cohesive, and to avoid agonizing over whether two different white trim colors work together or not.
What is the Best Sheen for Trim?
Semi-gloss is our recommendation when painting trim. It’s durable, yet not too shiny, and it’s resistant to moisture.
Satin has slightly less shine, but it’s not as durable or as washable, and high gloss is typically too shiny for most people’s taste.
BUT, the reflection of the semi-gloss trim will really pop against a satin or eggshell wall! The only drawback is that a higher sheen can highlight minor imperfections more so than a paint with less sheen.
Best Sherwin Williams White Paint Color for Interior Trim
Now that you know which four white paint colors from Sherwin Williams are best for trim, which one will you choose? Are you looking for wall colors to coordinate with your white trim? Then you’ll want to head on over to this article on ideas for whole house color palettes from Sherwin Williams.
(FYI: Each of the five color palettes features ONE of the trim whites from this article, along with four coordinating Sherwin Williams paint colors!)