Neutral Paint Colors: Sherwin Williams Alabaster

Tell all ya friends and neighbors!

Sherwin Williams Alabaster is a great netural color that is not white, but also not a cream. Come see this color showcased in our entire home and learn why it’s such a great neutral color that will work in any space

Sherwin Williams Alabaster in what rooms of the house

When we set out to create a whole home paint color palette, I knew one thing – I wanted neutral.

I’m not sure if you know this, though, but there are approximately 1950438920 JILLION neutral colors.

It’s precisely why I love certain lines of paint the most like Farrow and Ball and Magnolia Colors.

In fact, I even did a post where I compared Joanna Gaines paint colors matched to Behr paint and even that was overwhelming. And what do I do when I’m overhwhelmed?

Turn things over to the actual Joanna Gaines in this relationship – Jordan.

Aside from a few sentences of input, he actually picked our entire home paint color scheme and I gotta say, he nailed it.

But today specifically, we are going to talk about the very first color he picked out to be the “base” of everything else – Alabaster by Sherwin Williams.

Sherwin Williams Alabaster (SW 7008)

Sherwin Williams Alabaster details

Side bar, have you ever wondered what all those numbers mean when you see paint colors? It’s never made sense to me, but I’ve done a little research because I’m such a kind soul.

RGB: This is red, green, blue. These numbers range on a scale from 0 to 255.

Hex Value: Another way of reading paint colors. The hex value is actually a mixture of the RGB values.

LRV: This number is probably the most important. LRV stands for Light Reflectance Value. It refers to how light or how dark a color will appear once painted on the wall based on how much light the color will reflect.

Get it now? Light reflectance value?

“Why is this important? You’re normally funny, Carmen. This is boring.”

I know, I know. Hear me out. I promise this will make sense and you’ll start looking at this from now on when you go and pick out paint colors.

The LRV will drastically change what your color looks like based on the amount of natural lighting your particular room gets.

The lower the LRV, the darker the color will be. The higher the LRV, the lighter the color will be.

If you want to fully nerd out, Kylie at Kylie M. Interiors did an entire post breaking down the LRV of paint and there’s no need for me to reinvent that wheel over here.

What color is Sherwin Williams Alabaster?

Sherwin Williams Alabaster has an LRV of 82. This means this is a light (off white) color. And if you have a super well lit room, it will be very light and bright.

This is an excellent color choice for you because it works in rooms where there isn’t a lot of natural light.

Not to mention, Sherwin Williams Alabaster white was the color of the year in 2016 and is still one of the best selling white paint colors 4 years later. Holla.

Alabaster Undertones

sherwin williams alabaster in paint color fan deck

Alabaster is technically an off white, and is nestled right under Sherwin Williams Pure White on the Sherwin Williams 2020 fan deck. Sherwin Williams Pure White is a cooler shade of white with a bit more blue undertones.

Alabaster is what I would consider a warm white; it’s way more brown in its undertones than blue. It’s not a cool color at all. But in regards to its undertones, they are very subtle. It has never once looked or felt brown to me.

When Jordan first told me that he wanted white walls, I thought he was crazy, especially knowing that we wanted a lot more kids.

However, seeing the wall in our spaces, especially in the ones that get a lot of natural light, I love it more and more.

Enough chatting, let’s see this color in our house! Consider this a mini home tour, I suppose. I didn’t get the house all dolled up for you though.

Living Room

white couch sherwin williams alabaster walls
shiplap wall painted sherwin williams alabaster and white wingback arm chair
shiplap wall painted alabaster white

You can tell in our living room that this is a white with warm tones, but it’s not extremely white. Our trim and ceilings are Sherwin Williams Extra White and it is a very cool white. It’s noticeably different white, but they do not look bad paired together.

Oh, and PS. Not that it matters, but we finally got rid of that rug. We’ll be putting hardwoods in here once we knock down a couple more walls and get a couple more stacks of hundred dollar bills.


grey painted lower kitchen cabinets and white upper cabinets with Sherwin Williams Alabaster on the walls
Sherwin Williams Peppercorn painted lower cabinets and Sherwin Williams pure white upper cabinets with Sherwin Williams Alabaster on the walls
Simple and neutral spring decor shiplap wall painted Sherwin Williams Alabaster

In our kitchen, we painted our cabinets to have grey lowers and the white uppers that you see is the Sherwin Williams Extra White again that is the same as our trim color.

It’s very obvious in our kitchen that SW Extra White is a very cool white, while Sherwin Williams Alabaster is definitely a warmer shade of white. For us, Alabaster does not look yellow, even in rooms with low natural lighting.

Laundry Room

small laundry room space with tile floor and built in sink with hanging clothes on the wall
amber glass bottles in a black bowl with sherwin williams alabaster white walls and white mermaid tile backsplash

Our laundry room that got a glow up last fall is painted with Sherwin Williams Alabaster.

I really think this room shows Alabaster in its “warmest” shade for us because this room only has one window as its natural light source.

You can tell it’s a bit more brown here, but again, I want to reiterate that I love this color because it’s not yellow.


small entry way grid gallery wall

Our entryway gets a lot of natural light from the 2 huge windows in our living room, so it looks pretty white here, but in person, it really is more of a soft, incredibly neutral white.

Charlotte’s Room

accent wall with Sherwin Williams Naval and Sherwin Williams Alabaster white

Here is a room that I hardly EVER show. Our daughter’s room. You can tell this is a before because of the old floors. We’ve since had those bad boys replaced with gorgeous 9″ unfinished oak floors and they look more like this now:

messy little girl's room with wood floors and Ikea bed in Sherwin Williams Alabaster white

We hadn’t fully put her room back together obviously and they weren’t even refinished here.

And before you judge me, this is a photo from our “scary house tour” aka what our house really looks like 9 times out of 10.

Regardless, this is her room painted Sherwin Williams Alabaster. The navy accent wall is Sherwin Williams Naval which has also been a color of the year and it’s gorgeous. I wish I had the nerve to put it other places in our house.

Also, isn’t it crazy how the same color can look completely different in the same room depending on lighting? The sun sets in the front of our house so her room is entirely brighter in the afternoon (messy bottom picture) than it is during the morning (neat and tidy top picture).

How does Sherwin Williams Alabaster compare to other popular paint colors?

Alabster vs Sherwin Williams Shoji White

Sherwin Williams Alabaster vs. Sherwin Williams Shoji White

SW Shoji White has an LRV of 74 which means it’s going to be a darker color than Sherwin Williams Alabaster. Shoji White has more of a brown undertone which almost looks like a super light greige.

Since we knew we were going to have Agreeable Gray (which is technically a greige) in a lot of our rooms as well, having 2 tones of greige just didn’t vibe well.

Alabaster vs. Accessible Beige

Sherwin Williams Alabaster vs. Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige

I’m a little confused as to why Sherwin Williams Alabaster gets lumped into categories with colors that are clearly greige. I can only assume it’s because of its brown undertones, but to me, these colors couldn’t be farther from one another.

Okay, they could totally be farther from one another, but still when it comes to neutral white paint colors especially, I would never consider Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige to be white.

The name of the color is in the name – Accessible Beige.

Alabaster vs. Sherwin Williams Greek Villa

Sherwin Williams Alabaster vs. Sherwin Williams Greek Villa

Okay, this one I can understand. Comparing Sherwin Williams Alabaster and Sherwin Williams Greek Villa, these are incredibly close colors.

In fact, the LRV of Greek Villa is just 2 higher than Alabaster at 84.

In the Sherwin Williams color fan deck, it’s on the page right before Alabaster. I will say that looking at swatches of them both, Sherwin Williams Greek Villa has a bit more of a grey tint to it than Sherwin Williams Alabaster.

Alabaster vs. Benjamin Moore White Dove

Sherwin Williams Alabaster vs. Benjamin Moore White Dove

If you prefer Benjamin Moore colors over Sherwin Williams, that’s your prerogative. Benjamin Moore has a great line of paint, but we just prefer Sherwin Williams and it’s more easily accessible here.

Plus, if I’m being honest, I can’t type out BM without thinking of poop cuz I’m a child.

But if you are looking to a color by Benjamin Moore that is similar to Sherwin Williams Alabaster, your choice is going to be Benjamin Moore White Dove. It’s a little bit lighter with an LRV of 85.38, but it’s beautiful in person.

Does Sherwin Williams Alabaster go with gray?

Absolutely it does. We have grey alll up in our house and even have a part of our stairwell where Sherwin Williams Alabaster is on one wall and it butts up to Agreeable Gray on the corner wall.

stairwell with SW agreeable gray and SW alabaster

It’s hard to tell, but the wall to the right is Agreeable Gray and the wall directly forward is Sherwin Williams Alabaster.

If you’re wondering why we chose to do that it’s because although there is a door leading out to our back porch, our entire kitchen is that Alabaster white and the ceiling connects off to the left.

Should you shiplap? Find out here!

That sentence makes no sense to you, but you can kind of see it in this picture. See how above the door is continued into the stairwell? It would have looked weird if we would have just cut it off before the door.

I’m going to stop rambling and just say yes, yes Sherwin Williams Alabaster goes with gray!

Even though we painted our kitchen cabinets Sherwin Williams Extra White, I think if you wanted to use a softer white, Alabaster would be a great option.

This color almost snuck up in our master bedroom too, but I was feeling froggy and decided to try a “color” and we went with Sea Salt instead.

From trim and doors to kitchen cabinets, if you’re wanting a soft white, Sherwin Williams Alabaster is going to be a great option for you. It will provide the “white” you want that also works great on shiplap, but it won’t feel like “sterile hospital” white!

How do you guys feel about SW Alabaster? Did we make the right choice?

In case you need this for later:

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See Sherwin Williams Alabaster in a REAL house! The perfect neutral white paint that doesn't feel to sterile via Living Letter Home

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  1. A little unrelated but could you tell me what brand or where you purchased the ceiling fan that’s photographed in the living room (with fireplace)? Thank you!

    1. Hi! Ours was purchased at Home Depot! I’m not sure if they still make it or not since it’s about 4-5 years old. I’ll try to dig up a link!

  2. Just came across your post-love!- and we are actually about yo do whole first floor in either Alabaster or Westhighland white- I am momentarily stuck! But my question is- Im hearing many are now doing trim and crown molding in same color as walls but maybe different sheen. What are your thoughts?

    1. It’s what we do in all of our flips! And with repainting our entire living area and kitchen for our renovation, we actually did this. Everything same color, just different sheens. We are NOT mad at all with the results!

  3. Wondering if Alabaster would look good with green. I love forest and dark greens. If it has a blue undertone it worries me though. If you don’t think it would work, what warm off white color would look good with green?

    1. Yes!! Depending on the shade, but we have a shade of green in our laundry room that’s lighter and I love it, another shade in our pantry that’s closed off but still looks fine when we open the door and then a super deep dark green in our girls’ room that looks awesome with it too!

  4. Hey! This was so helpful! We did alabaster on all of our interior walls with pure white trim and cabinets! Now for exterior – I see so many recommendations for alabaster. I are doing Tricorn black front door and courtyard doors (spanish style stucco home)- Will Alabaster be too bright? It looks bright right now but it is just a sample size on the existing brown exterior. What do you think? Will it warm up and not be stark?

    1. It really depends on how the sun hits your home, but there are tons of exteriors painted in Alabaster that look incredible!

  5. I am having a hard time deciding between SW Alabaster and BM White Dove for my bathroom vanity. I have a lot of natural light in my bathroom. I have traditionally used BM in my house but my contractor prefers SW.

    1. Honestly, they’re VERY similar. My friend has BM White Dove all throughout her house and I would say it’s a TINY bit cooler than SW Alabaster, but with a ton of natural light, you’re not going to be able to tell much of a difference. Hope that helps!

  6. Thank you so much first of all! So helpful! What color did you do your shilap in that one picture in your post? Is that alabaster too?

  7. Hey we are trying to figure out colors for our cabinets as our walls are painted alabaster. However, in this post you said you painted your cabinets “SW Extra White” but then in your Saga Continues post about your kitchen cabinets you said you painted your cabinets “Pure White.” Which one was it? I’m trying to figure out what each of those colors look like compared to the alabaster walls.

    1. Uh oh! Thank you for catching that mistake for me! I totally didn’t even realize I did that. After I write and edit a blog 100 times, I miss things. Our cabinets are painted Extra White!

  8. We are about to have our kitchen cabinets painted SW Alabaster and I’ve been trying to come up with a wall color. I’d love to do Alabaster on the wall too in a different finish, but all the existing trim/ceiling in our house is a brighter white shade (not sure exactly what). The cabinets do not go up to the ceiling & the cabinets have crown moulding attached to them that would be alabaster (no crown on the walls) so it would really just be the baseboard that would be the brighter white (and pantry door). Do you think if we did Alabaster on the walls it wouldn’t look right with the bright white baseboard? I don’t want to make the cabinets look dingy.

    1. We have super white and bright trim in our house that you can see in the pictures. You can see it in our kitchen too – our cabinets are the same bright white as the trim and the walls are all Alabaster.

  9. Hi Carmen,

    I am in the midst of dilemma in choosing the best color for my kitchen cabinets, countertops and backsplash. We have a north facing space that has a big french door but no windows. However, the space is well lighted with recessed lighting (currenly warm colored lights. probably should switch them to daylight color temp lights to balance it out as it appears to me as more yellow, now that we have these warm lights plus we painted our walls with Benjamin Moore White Dove and BM Oxford White for Trims, and Doors. Currently, I am choosing between Bright White and Alabaster for the cabinets.

    I’d appreciate your recommendation and I am actually willing to hire you for consultation if need be 🙂 I just don’t want to make such a big mistake on this as it will be our forever kitchen.

    Appreciate your response!

    1. You can see in our pictures that our cabinets are super bright whites and our walls are Alabaster. Of course it’s going to look different in every home, but hopefully that will help give you a sense of painted kitchen cabinets. Plus, the real truth is that cabinets can always be painted and your taste may change over time and you may WANT to change them anyway. Don’t be afraid of paint! 🙂

  10. Thank you for writing this article. I’m trying to decide which color to paint my living room and kitchen walls and your article has sold me on Alabaster. I was worried about not having enough contrast with the white trim, but I can definitely see it in your pics. Thank you!

    1. Yes you can absolutely tell the difference AND it still doesn’t feel like the walls are “yellow” or anything at all 🙂

  11. Hi! Love this post! We have dark countertops abs backsplash with a lot of creams, browns and some grays. I think I just decided today to do cabinets in Shoji White abs island in a dark gray! What color is yours? I love it!
    Thank you!

  12. Did you use eggshell or satin for your walls? What type of Sherwin Williams paint did y’all choose? We are also repainting most of our house alabaster as our trim is already alabaster in semi gloss. The walls were an accessible beige already when we bought it. Just want to lighten them up with the alabaster without making the trim look dirty by using an extra white or pure white on the walls.your house is lovely!

    1. Thanks for the compliment! We use eggshell! This was from their line they did with HGTV (which they don’t sell anymore), but you should be able to find something comparable in price.

  13. Hi! I just saw this post and I love it! We painted our front entry and loving room alabaster and I may paint some other areas too. My question is about your fire place! Did you guys lime wash it? And if so what color? I’m planning to do this to the brick outside in the front of our house and I’m considering painting the exterior alabaster! It looks so good together I thought I’d ask!

    1. Oh, the woes of changing blog hosts. I lost all the photos to the 2 posts that showed the step by step of how we did this which makes me so sad. We actually used tile mortar and it was SO cheap and SO easy!!

  14. I am trying to decide what color I want to paint my old ugly oak cabinets. I had been thinking of Neutral Cream BM paint color but now after seeing your post and reading the reviews I think I’m going with SW Alabaster . I’d also like to know what color walls and counter tops would look good with that. I like the grays but not sure since my kitchen is a step up opened space into my den and it is painted Lenox tan. Most of my house is painted in the lighter beiges like Shaker beige but now I wanted a little something different in my kitchen. What would you recommend that would look good with the Lenox Tan walls that will be step up from my kitchen? I also have a brick wall in that kitchen where the previous owner took in carport. The last owners painted it red. I do not like the red wall at all. Not sure if I should just paint it same color as kitchen walls or use an accent color little darker for it. I’d greatly appreciate any suggestions as to what would look best. But I definitely love the Alabaster color for my oak cabinets.

    1. It’s so hard to say without seeing the space! We have Alabaster on our walls and a very pure bright white on our cabinets. My suggestion would be to maybe do a Google image search for “Alabaster kitchen cabinets” and find some inspiration photos of what people are painting their walls. Eek. Sorry I can’t be more help!!

  15. Thank you for this expert commentary on Alabaster! I just had my kitchen cabinets painted Albaster. They are coming back to paint my first floor all Alabaster – trim in satin finish, walls in egg shell.

    If I wanted to do just the trim upstairs in a white that’s a bit whiter than Alabaster what color is close that you think could transition well? Haven’t decided on wall colors for upstairs yet.

    1. Another color we LOVE is Behr Polar Bear 🙂 It’s a bit brighter than Alabaster and if we ever redo our kitchen and open up the wall between our living room and kitchen, I think we’re going to repaint everything in that color!

  16. I am considering alabaster for our rooms but have better access to Home Depot for paint. Do you have a similar color recommendation in Behr ?

    1. If you can, Lowe’s carries SW paint including Alabaster. Their Showcase is the best we have ever used. 1 coat in Alabaster covered very dark gold covered walls. Good Luck.

      1. We actually got ours from Lowes too! At the time it was the HGTV Sherwin Williams line and the coverage was great 🙂

  17. This is awesome! You did a beautiful job on your house! We are looking for a white to go with our Pure White Cabinets and Trim. Extra white was too blue in our house. Do you think its ok to use Alabaster on the walls? I know the two colors are so close, but I am having a hard time finding a warm / neutral white for the walls. We get a lot of east light. Its a farmhouse kitchen with shiplap in some areas. WE are looking for a clean white farmhouse look.

  18. I love Alabaster!! Do you mind sharing the Sherwin Williams paint and sheen you used in Alabaster? We are painting our entire open areas Alabaster and have Pure White Satin baseboards, doors, and kitchen cabinets.

    1. So we actually used the HGTV Sherwin Williams Home line they had a while ago at Lowes. Our sheen is always eggshell! Hope that helps you 🙂

  19. What color are your doors? I am in the middle of a remodel and I wanted to do dark doors. Was thinking iron ore. We painted the bathrooms alabaster and the rest of the house agreeable gray. I’m now worried that if I do iron ore it will look too dark paired with agreeable gray and I’m considering repainting! Ugh, but we went with Creamy for our kitchen cabinets (to make a king story somewhat short- we haven’t completely remodeled the kitchen yet, just to get by for a few years) so I’m afraid that might clash. Love any suggestions or thoughts you might have!

  20. I love this article! So helpful, because I’m trying to decide what color to paint my kitchen walls and cabinets and I came across your kitchen on Pinterest! So now my question is… what color of grey are your lower cabinets & your doors in your hallway!?

  21. So glad I came across your post! I was 98% sure we were going with alabaster for our new home and you put me over the edge! My new dilemma, the trim!! I was planning on doing white dove but am nervous there won’t be enough contrast. Then I saw your comparison and they look so similar! Was also going to do my built ins white dove, I def want a pop, but not sterile white, what are your thoughts?

    1. I actually love that idea. My husband is in real estate and he’s an investor as well and he promises me white is IN. So go for it!

  22. My hardwood floors are walnut will Alabaster go? Also, I have real dining room chairs will Alabaster go with them in the dining room?

      1. The great thing about Alabaster, or really any white for that matter, is that it goes SO WELL with anything. Really and truly! I love the idea of teal dining room chairs and I think it’d be beautiful (having not seen it myself of course haha)

  23. This was great, very helpful. We’re building now and chose Alabaster as our exterior color, with Urbane Bronze accented on the front door, garage door and shutters. Fingers crossed it comes out lovely!

  24. What color of white trim color goes well with alabaster? Our home flooded in September and looking for new paint colors. We had kilem beige and we are looking for a more white look. We will have wood flooring and looking for like a coastal bohemian look. Thanks!

    1. So all of our trim is SW Ultra White. There’s enough contrast where you can tell a difference AND where the Alabaster doesn’t look yellow. I hope that helps!

  25. I plan to paint our stone fireplace alabaster color and the wall around that fireplace will be indigo (blue). The rest of our house is agreeable gray. Do you think they would be go well together. Thanks. Love your color of choice.

    1. Depending on the shade of blue, I would assume it would be fine! It’s hard to say without seeing it, but the great news about a white like Alabaster is that it typically goes well with ANY color!

  26. Great article! I love Sherwin Williams paints too and have used Agreeable Beige and Alabaster in the past with my current house done in agreeable beige. I dont have as much light now and was looking for my next paint color and will be using the LRV values in the future. Alabaster it is!

  27. We have alabaster in kitchen cabinets, doors and baseboards and kilim beige on walls. I do not like the wall color and thinking of repainting. What would you suggest for the walls?

    1. Hmmm, that would totally depend on your lighting situation and whether or not you’re wanting to stay in the beige family or wanting to change it up. You could always go to more of a greige! Although grey is neutral, it’s actually kind of on its way out design trend wise, BUT if it works for you, grey is good too!

  28. This article was so helpful! I painted my room in alabaster in January with an accent wall in urbane bronze. I fell so in love with it. Everything just pops against it and it looks so clean and bright. We had a huge flood in our house in October and they had to demo most of our first floor which was worldly gray (which I was obsessed with!!) but it was somewhat limiting as I’m really loving the new green trend! I decided to paint almost my entire first floor in Alabaster and was a little nervous! But we don’t have our furniture or wall decor back from storage because they’re still working on our house. So far it looks amazing but this article has been so helpful and I feel so much better about my choice! I’m excited to see how our stuff will look against this beautiful color when we get it all back!

  29. Would SW Alabaster neutralize 90’s honey oak kitchen cabinets? Or, at least, not highlight them.

    Would love to replace them but it’s not in the budget right now.

    Thanks in advance!li

    1. I would think so? Maybe you could test a little on the wall near your cabinets. I know those honey oak cabinets are SO hard to work with. If you have it in you, painting them could be a night and day difference. We painted ours and although it was a pain in the rear, it gave the entire kitchen a different look and feel!

  30. Thank you for this great info. So if I use Alabaster on my living and dinning walls what color of white could I use on my fireplace surround and mantle. I am using black on the brick on the inner side of the surround.
    Thank you so much

  31. Thank you for your “enlightening” article on Alabaster!
    We’re planning on having our kitchen cabinets professionally painted in an off white…which must be a warm white, since our kitchen is open to our Kilim beige living area, and is a low light area, as well. In addition our large entertainment unit, directly across from the kitchen is a creamy off white….
    I’ve been scouring g the internet to research all off white and have also been looking at Swiss Coffee…. could you kindly compare this color with Alabaster? Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Beth,
      I also am debating the swiss coffee BM vs SW alabaster
      Its for my living room that is North facing and not much natural light. Let me know what you decide!!!

  32. I am OBSESSED with SW Alabaster too! It looks gorgeous in your home, I cannot wait to cover all our walls when we move into our new house! What color are those blackish doors in the photo with the pictures on your wall- your entryway, i believe? Thanks!

  33. So glad for your review of SW Alabaster because I’m considering it. I’m also looking into SW Origami. Are they similar? Do you have an opinion on Origami?

    1. I’m so glad it was helpful. So to me, I think Origami has a bit more of a brown/tan undertone. It’s a great neutral white, but I think it’s going to be more “noticeable” on the wall if that makes sense. Still neutral, but there will be an undertone depending on lighting. Alabaster really has very little undertones so it looks the same in most all lighting scenarios. I hope that helps!

  34. This is great thank you! How do you feel about alabaster for painting a brick fireplace? Also have you done any reviews on black paint colors? How do you feel about soft blacks paired with alabaster?

    1. Funny you ask, my husband is OBSESSED with black and wants to paint something black so bad haha. I feel AMAZING about soft blacks with Alabaster. It will look so clean and modern, but is a perfect background for whatever decor you may have. But as far as painting brick with it, I think it could look great depending on your wall color and decor!

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