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Blue Gray Paint Colors

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Blue is a classic color and it’s one of the most popular color families. When mixed with gray, it creates the perfect balance of color and neutral. A blue gray paint color is the perfect storm of colors.

If you know me, you know I’m a fan of blue. I gravitate towards the color all the time. Whether it involves shopping for clothes or furniture, my eyes are almost always drawn to blue colors first. The same goes for paint colors.

Blue paint colors can be tricky to get right. Since there are so many elements that factor into what a paint color looks like on the walls, sometimes the color you pick isn’t what you were expecting.

Sometimes that beautiful light blue you thought you were getting turns out to be a baby blue that you certainly didn’t intend on. First, this is why I always suggest swatching paint colors, and second, rather than a full blue go for blue gray paint colors.

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With that being said, I want to explore the wonderful world of blue gray paint colors. I’ll talk about why they are such great paint color options, where they work best, and some of the best blue gray paint colors to use. 

Blue Gray Paint Colors

SW Blue Gray Paint Colors

But, before I dive into the world of blue gray colors, I want to hit ya with a few fun facts. I mean who doesn’t love a fun fact from time to time?

According to Wikipedia

  • Blue-grey (British English) is a medium bluish-gray color. Another name for this color is livid; this color name comes from the Latin color term lividus meaning “‘a dull leaden-blue color’, and also used to describe the color of contused flesh, leading to the English expression ‘black and blue'”.
  • There is a range of colors called livid colors that combine the colors blue and gray. Some of these colors are shown below.
  • Livid (blue-gray) is the opposite concept from brown. Brown colors are mainly dark orange and dark red colors—warm colors on the warm color side of the color wheel, while blue-gray (livid) colors are mainly dark blue and dark azure colors—colors on the opposite side of the color wheel—cool colors on the cool color side of the color wheel.
  • The first recorded use of livid as a color name in English was in 1622.
  • Blue-gray was a Crayola crayon color from 1958 to 1990.

Out of all these facts, the only one I knew was the crayon one. And I’m actually curious why they stopped making it in 1990. Anyone else?

What is a blue gray paint color?

To sum it up, a blue-gray paint color is gray with blue added to it. Some of these livid colors are more blue than gray and others are more gray than blue. These cool toned colors can also be considered slate colors.

The reason blue gray paint colors are great is because when they are paired with brighter colors they will act as neutrals. They also hold their own when they are used in combination with black colors, white colors, or wood tones. 

It’s true, we have been having many customers asking for cool gray paint colors with more of a blue undertone to it. This makes my heart so happy. I feel like so often people are terrified of color on their walls.

I understand paint colors are intimidating especially when it’s a non-neutral. But, if you follow the steps on how to pick the right paint color, it can be done. And this is another reason why choosing to go with a livid color is a great option. 

Now that blue gray paint colors are on the rise, why not share a few of the best ones I have found? 

Where can you use them?

The beauty of blue-gray paint colors is that you can use them in just about any space, just like neutral paint colors.

Use blue-gray paint colors on the exterior of your home.

Gentleman's Gray Exterior (1)
via Benjamin Moore

The exterior of the home is one of the best places to use a darker blue gray paint color.  It will make a dramatic statement without going overboard. And because the exterior of the home is outside and has more square footage to cover, it can handle a darker shade.

Blue-gray paint colors in the bedroom.

Storm cloud bedroom
via Sherwin Williams

In my opinion, the bedroom is the optimal place to use these colors. Since blue promotes calmness and relaxation, it’s perfect for a bedroom. Blue grays are great because they have a bit of color to them while being on the neutral side. And that makes sense for a bedroom paint color since you don’t want your paint to be overly colorful or vibrant. 

Try a blue-gray in the bathroom.

blue gray bathroom

The bathroom is another room where you want to create a serene and spa-like atmosphere. Again, blue is a color that is peaceful and calming. Bringing in a lighter blue-gray paint color will add a neutral softness to the room. 

What about the kitchen?

I’d think twice before painting your entire kitchen blue. According to a study published in Appetite, people tended to drink and eat more when they were using blue cups and plates.  I find this fascinating.

I mean I’m not sure how relevant this is to paint colors in your kitchen. But it is still something to think about. 

To be on the safe side, choose a blue-gray paint color that is on the grayer rather than the blue side for your kitchen walls. Better yet, add a pop of blue as an accent wall or on your cabinets.

Don’t start painting until you have the right tools!

SHOP MUST HAVE PAINTING TOOLS

OK, so let’s talk about some of the best blue gray paint colors from Sherwin Williams and Benjamin Moore. I have a lot to share, so you may want to pack a lunch and grab a snack because this may take a while. 

SW Rock Candy

Rock Candy SW 6231

LRV: 75

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SW Icicle

Icicle SW 6238

LRV: 73

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Misty SW 6232

LRV: 64

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SW North Star

North Star SW 6246

LRV: 62

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SW Evening Shadow

Evening Shadow SW 7662

LRV: 60

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Rock Candy and Icicle are both very light blue gray colors with  LRVs in the 70s. Of the 2, SW Icicle has more of a blue tint to it. 

Misty, North Star, and Evening Shadow are all similar in LRV. Misty and Evening Shadow are very similar both more of the gray side of these livid colors.  Whereas, North Star has a touch more blue in it.

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SW Gray Screen

Gray Screen SW 7071

LRV: 59

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SW Upward

Upward SW 6239

LRV: 57

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SW Krypton

Krypton SW 6247

LRV: 52

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SW Jubilee

Jubilee SW 6248

LRV: 45

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SW Online

Online SW 7072

LRV: 45

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Getting into more of the mid-tone to darker blue grays, Gray Screen and Online are the grayest of the bunch. Krypton and Jubilee are a bit on the blue side but, Upward has the most blue of all of them.

Daphne SW 9151

LRV: 32

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Bracing Blue SW 6242

Bracing Blue SW 6242

LRV: 25

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Storm Cloud SW 6249

Storm Cloud SW 6249

LRV: 23

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SW Distance

Distance SW 6243

LRV: 15

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Granite Peak SW 6250

Granite Peak SW 6250

LRV: 14

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Daphne, Bracing Blue, and Distance are all more on the blue side of the color. They have a slate-like look to them. They are great darker blue gray options.

Now, Storm Cloud and Granite Peak are the opposite, they are less blue and more gray. They also can be considered slate colors.

BM Iceberg

Iceberg 2122-50

LRV:72.88

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BM Breath of Fresh Air

Breath of Fresh Air 806

LRV: 70.55

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BM Beacon Gray 2128-60

Beacon Gray 2128-60

LRV: 67.14

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BM Blue LAce 1625

Blue Lace 1625

LRV: 66.93

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BM Silver Gray

Silver Gray BM 2131-60

LRV: 61.31

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BM Smoke

Smoke BM 2122-40

LRV: 56.49

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In this next grouping, Iceberg is the lightest and has more blue than gray in it. Breath of Fresh Air is the most blue and is a great alternative to a baby blue.

Beacon Gray, Blue Lace, and Silver Gray are all more blue than gray. Dusty blue is a great way to describe these colors.

Finally, Smoke is slightly more of a teal gray. Teal is still a shade of blue so I had to sneak it in here. You know I love my teal colors.

BM Slate Blue 1648

Slate Blue 1648

LRV: 42.85

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Pikes Peak Gray

Pike’s Peak Gray 2127-50

LRV: 39.56

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BM Nickel

Nickel 2119-50

LRV:  39.3

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BM Pilgrim Haze

Pilgrim Haze 2132-50

LRV: 37.8

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BM Cloudy Sky

Cloudy Sky 2122-30

LRV: 32.34 

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Pike’s Peak Gray, Nickel, and Pilgrim Haze are all similar in tone. They are mid-toned and have, in my opinion, the perfect balance of blue and gray in them.

Slate Blue is the bluest out of this group. Cloudy Sky is tinkering on the teal side but is nonetheless an awesome blue gray option.

BM Water's Edge

Water’s Edge BM 1635

LRV: 30.42

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BM Amsterdam AF-550

Amsterdam AF-550

LRV: 28.39

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BM Providence Blue

Providence Blue 1636

LRV: 18.09

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BM Van Duesen Blue HC-156

Van Deusen Blue HC-156

LRV: 10.04

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BM Gentlemans Gray 2062-20

Gentleman’s Gray 2062-20

LRV: 5.37

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In this final bunch, Water’s Edge and Amsterdam are very close in color. Both colors have more blue than gray in them.

Providence Blue is another teal-ish blue gray that has a good amount of both teal and gray in it.

Van Deusen Blue and Gentleman’s Gray are the darkest blue gray paint colors, and both have more of a blue undertone to them.

The Best Bluish Gray Paint Colors from Sherwin Williams

The Best Light Blue Grays by Sherwin Williams

  • Rock Candy SW 6231
  • Misty SW 6232
  • North Star SW 6246
  • Icicle SW 6238
  • Evening Shadow SW 7662
  • Gray Screen SW 7071
  • Upward SW 6239
  • Evening Shadow SW 7662
  • Gray Screen SW 7071

The Best Dark Blue Grays by Sherwin Williams

  • Krypton SW 6247
  • Online SW 7072
  • Jubilee SW 6248
  • Distance SW 6243
  • Storm Cloud SW 6249
  • Bracing Blue SE 6242
  • Granite Peak SW 6250
  • Daphne SW 9151

The Best Blue Gray Paint Colors from Benjamin Moore

The Best Light Blue Gray Paint Colors from Benjamin Moore

  • Silver Gray BM 2131-60
  • Smoke 2122-40
  • Iceberg 2122-50
  • Breath of Fresh Air 806
  • Nickel 2119-50
  • Slate Blue 1648
  • Beacon Gray 2128-60
  • Blue Lace 1625

The Best Dark Blue Gray Paint Colors from Benjamin Moore

  • Van Deusen Blue HC-156
  • Water’s Edge 1635
  • Cloudy Sky 2122-30
  • Providence Blue 1636
  • Pilgrim Haze 2132-50
  • Pike’s Peak Gray 2127-50
  • Amsterdam AF-550
  • Gentleman’s Gray 2062-20

Don’t Forget to test your paint colors!

Finally, as I say in all my paint color posts, do not make the common mistake of not swatching the paint colors you are thinking about using. The colors you see on the computer look differently than a swatch on your home.  So choose a few colors you want to try and swatch those babies. LARGE swatches too! 

Check out my review on Samplize, it’s an easier, mess-free way to swatch!


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Trust me choosing the wrong paint color is an expensive mistake you do not want to make.

Final Thoughts

Blue gray or should I say livid colors are beautiful paint colors that work in all kinds of applications. From the exterior of the home to a master bedroom, choosing a blue gray paint color is sure to add a sense of calmness and beauty to the space.

If you are looking for a color that has neutral tendencies, opt for a blue gray. You get all the pizzaz of a blue while having the neutrality of a gray. A true win-win in my book.

WAIT! Before you start painting make sure you have the best painting tools to make your job easier. It will take hours off your painting times!

More Paint Colors to Consider

RECENT ARTICLES:

Brenda Johnson

Saturday 23rd of April 2022

Loved the colors I however, would like a suggestion for open living room, kitchen, dining room. Flooring is wood- the lighter color brown, cabinets brown , All white leather sectional & chairs Would like some color on the walls I appreciate a suggestion

Kathy

Wednesday 8th of December 2021

I’m noticing all the paint colors your showing are in rooms with white cabinets, white furniture, white everything…Can you help me with a blue/gray color that’s light and can go with cherry wood cabinets and more dark furniture, etc….My sons home has cherry cabinets, with black grainte and beige stone backsplash…Off the kitchen is a sunroom with dark wood beams and a very high ceiling..The kitchen opens into the sunroom and the other side of the kitchen opens into the living room.,,The living room has a matching cherry color fireplace enclosure with black grainte tiles on face part of it..I have a light color hardwood floors and all white trim throughout.,,I want a nice light blue/gray paint that will let my dark wood pop out…Im thinking after I can add throw pillows to my dark brown leather living room …The throw pillows, curtains, rug will have a variety of dark blues, teal,mustard, greens and orange colors …..As far as paint,I’m between Silver Strand, Icicle, Rock Candy and Light French Gray at 25% lighter….Please help! Painters are coming and I really need to decide..Most important is the color doesn’t end up purple, pink or worst….

Diane Schneeloch

Thursday 21st of October 2021

Hello, I painted our master bedroom Sherman Williams Rock Candy. I need help with adding some color. Our bedding is all white with white nightstands. I have white sheers on windows and need curtain panels and pillows on the bed. Any suggestions? I have difficulty with pairing cool and warm colors.

Karyn

Monday 7th of June 2021

My house is a light gray and beige brick. We get intense sun most of the day. What blue gray color would look good on the doors and shutters? I’m thinking along the lines of SW Daphne but can’t decide. I’m going for a soft look. Thank you!!

Lisa

Saturday 15th of May 2021

Thank you for your blue/gray paint recommendations!! I’m considering painting 2 dark accent walls and need to pick up some samples but I do like Distance and Bracing Blue. I am lightening our dark brown vinyl floors with natural wood tones in tables, chairs and a bench and off white/warm furniture and area rugs. Can you recommend an all over white paint for the other walls (we also have white kitchen cabinets)? Or a light color to go with the gray/blue accent walls? Pure White (SW) might be too white.

Thank you so much!!

Lisa

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