The 35 Best Shades of Gray Paint You'll Ever Use

Sage Tint is the neutral you've been looking for.

There are thousands of grays in the paint store, but some of the nation's top designers narrowed down the options to their absolute favorites. With blue-, green- and taupe-based hues, these pro picks will look good just about everywhere.

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kitchen of the year matthew quinn
Trevor Tondro
Pale Grays

In the 2016 Kitchen of the Year, Atlanta designer Matthew Quinn disguised Thermador's Freedom freezer and refrigerator behind panels painted a sophisticated light gray.

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Dove's Tail

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Paper White

"For a breezy Palm Beach kitchen, I treated this wispy cloud-gray as an accent color. It's muted and calm, and on sunny days, it reads as the lightest, palest blue." — Beth Martell

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Paper White 1590

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"The name Mercury gives you the idea that it's silvery, but it's not. It's a medium pale gray, a Dior gray, that goes really well with both traditional and contemporary and doesn't show the wear that white cabinetry does. It also looks great with stainless steel, nickel, and Carrara marble. Try turquoise as an accent color." — Penny Drue Baird

Make it yours: Christopher Peacock Paint Mercury CPP1 18

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farrow and ball skimming stone
Skimming Stone

"It's one of my all-time favorite colors, a warm gray that makes a room inviting yet still clean and crisp. It works with almost any scheme, but I like to use it with either gem tones or neutrals, such as creams, browns, and dark grays. I painted my own living room this color and after all this time I still love it, which means a lot!" — Blair Harris

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Skimming Stone 241

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c2 paint pavement

"It's the color of stone, a soft gray with a touch of blue. Swedish houses are actually unbelievably colorful, but none of the colors are brilliant. It's as if someone splashed ochre into every paint can, so the colors are muted and toned down. You seem to be seeing them by candlelight or under a blazing sun." — John Danzer

Make it yours: C2 Paint Pavement C2-988

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gray kitchen bar with tile backsplash
Karyn R. Millet
True Grays

Copy this modern kitchen by Raili Clasen and go not too blue, not too green, but justtt right. These black-based hues will wipe the slate clean.

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Wrought Iron 2124-10

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benjamin moore stone harbor
Stone Harbor

"Any color can be a neutral if it is grayed off with a touch of black and used all over a room, without any other color interrupting it. I particularly love greens as neutrals: moss, sage, stone, hunter. I like to use many different tones." — Stephen Sills

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Stone Harbor 2111-50

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Magnetic Gray

"In the South, sunny means hot. We don't want colors that make you turn the air-conditioning up. This is a silvery blue-gray, almost like an Armani color, very soothing. Because of the grayness, it absorbs light." — Jackye Lanham

Make it yours: Sherwin-Williams Magnetic Gray SW-7058

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"I love pearl gray for a foyer, bedroom or hallway — anywhere you want a sense of intimacy. If there's a big white space with a niche, I would paint only the niche this soft gray. I always like shadowy, mercurial colors that play up the mysteries of architecture." — Vicente Wolf

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Graytint 1611

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Down Pipe

"It's charcoal, but I think of it as wet stone, wet cement or even soot. It's a fabulous color for trim — they use it in French and English houses all the time. In a kitchen, if you paint the walls and cabinets this color and use a lot of mirrors, you'd have a very rich, townhousey, sexy alternative to the all-white kitchen." — Myra Hoefer

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Down Pipe 26

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Victoria Pearson
Blue Grays

According to Feng Shui, deeper blues inspire wisdom and introspection. Jumpstart some better thinking with a teal or dove-like gray, similar to this 1930s home designed by Nathan Turner.

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Dix Blue 82 and Plummet 272

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"Those 18th-century British architects kept the front hallway somber to recall the color of the stone outside, on the facade. I like the idea of bringing the outside in, but stone doesn't necessarily work for me. I tend to use a sky-bluish color that has a pretty heavy dose of gray and green." — Steven Gambrel

Make it yours: Pratt & Lambert Argent 1322

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Palladian Blue

"If you took green and sky blue and put them in a bucket with a lot of air, this is what you would get. I even put it on the ceiling. It looks great with black-and-white floors. I'd add a bronze bench with shocking pink upholstery." — John Oetgen

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue HC-144

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Light Blue

"It works well for bedrooms, bathrooms and especially work spaces, because it's a powerful yet gentle mediator, bringing calm to all that clutter." — Susan Ferrier

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Light Blue 22

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Green Blue

"It's my two favorite colors mixed together. Soft, but with a lot of vibrancy. Greens and blues are known for their relaxing effect." — Sheila Bridges

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Green Blue 84

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Sea Star

"I like very pale teal. It's a nice background for highly textured washed-out beige textiles, and together they make a kind of faded beach story, pulling together the greens of the earth, the grays of the sky and the blue-greens of the water." — Steven Gambrel

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Sea Star 2123-30

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Wolf Gray

"I'm so tired of all those off-white cabinets. I'd paint them this dark Swedish gray-blue and make the whole room very Gustavian, with chalky white walls, Carrara marble countertops and stainless-steel appliances." — Sandra Nunnerley

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Wolf Gray 2127-40

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Claydon Blue

"My library gets no light, so I took advantage of the disadvantage and painted it this deep blue-green. It's a restful color, kind of an ancient color. You see it in the medieval tapestries at the Cluny Museum. Now everybody gravitates to my dark, cozy room. And the color works with anything — Oriental rugs, African pillows, Islamic textiles." — Stephanie Stokes

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Claydon Blue 87

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breakfast room with secretary desk
Peter Murdock
Green Grays

Turn to nature and bring gorgeous shades of sage, fern and pistachio indoors. Just like this breakfast room designed by Bill Brockschmidt and Courtney Coleman, these green-infused grays will feel like a breath of fresh air.

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Mizzle 266

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Vert de Terre

"This is the furry, fuzzy green of lamb's ears. Very herbal. It's rich without being too saturated, and makes a great backdrop for mahogany, silver or ivory. It's the color of my fantasy room — a book-lined great ballroom with a lit Polonaise in the middle of the limestone floor and orange trees in tubs. A pavilion in the forest." — Charlotte Moss

Make it yours: Farrow & Ball Vert de Terre 234

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Sage Tint

"It's kind of robin's egg blue, and with mahogany furniture and neutral upholstery, it looks great. I see dining rooms as mostly evening rooms, and this has life to it. It's very soothing." — Mariette Himes Gomez

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Sage Tint 458

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benjamin moore heavenly blue
Heavenly Blue

"This is the color of the sky in Old Master paintings, when the varnish has yellowed; it's luminous. Paint just the floor and you'd feel as if you were floating." — Thomas Jayne

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Heavenly Blue

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Soft Fern

"For me, the most appealing colors in summer are not hot but cool. You don't need to be reminded of the sun and heat — you're in it. What you want is a cool breeze through the pine trees, like this chalky gray green." — Frank Roop

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Soft Fern 2144-40

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"Mesquite is a flattering light moss green without much yellow. I love it because it doesn't shout 'I'm green!' It says, 'I'm a very beautiful color.'" — Jennifer Garrigues

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Mesquite 501

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Cedar Grove

"In my cutting garden I have morning glories climbing over a lattice obelisk painted this wonderful silvery sage green. It reminds me of lavender leaves." — Michael Whaley

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Cedar Grove 444

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Colony Green

"I grew up in a house that was all turquoise, and for years I couldn't look at blue. But this color is so terrifically pretty and filled with joy — sort of like as if you were inside a robin's egg looking out into the light. I'd use it in a bedroom with white lacquered trim, a four-poster bed lacquered white, and crisp white bed linens." — David Kleinberg

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Colony Green 694

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"Lago Argentino is a glacier lake in Patagonia, and it's the most amazing color, an aqua, milky because as the ice melts it pulls minerals off the mountain. I stayed in an inn with a stunning view of the Perito Moreno glacier." — Suzanne Rheinstein

Make it yours: Ralph Lauren Paint Blue-Green GH81

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joshua greene living room
Peter Murdock
Taupe Grays

Warm it up with a cozier gray flecked with brown. A tawny shade can unify the space while setting the stage for dramatic art and furnishings, just like Joshua Greene's Greenwich Village apartment.

Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Rockport Gray HC-105

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"At first glance, this is a soft grayish putty. Then its golden undertones unfold as it catches the light and it radiates with warmth. It's like pale ashes with hidden embers glowing beneath them. It's an old warmth, and the color is always changing." — Tori Golub

Make it yours: Donald Kaufman Color Collection DKC-62

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"Green is the great neutral, all the way from pond scum to soft sage or pale celery. I recently moved into a new house surrounded by greenery, and when I was thinking of what color I might use for a drapery lining, it came to me to reflect the green that is present year-round right outside that window." — Barbara Barry

Make it yours: Donald Kaufman Color Collection DKC-8

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