Beyond The Blue (and Pink): Designers Guide To The 12 Best Paint Colors For Nursery

The best paint colors for nursery designs that are hand picked by the best in the business! This list has great neutral paint color options or even colors for a more bold, modern look


12 Designer-Chosen Best Paint Colors For Nursery

Choosing the right paint color for a baby’s nursery can be overwhelming, especially if you’re unsure what to consider. It’s a big decision! You want it to be perfect and in harmony with your home’s decor, but also have a personality for your little one.

Your new baby will spend a lot of time of their first years in this room, so it’s crucial that you select colors that are both beautiful and functional.

Trying to find the balance between fun colors for play as they’re a bit older and more soothing shades for sleep and relaxation can be a bit of a challenge.

You don’t want your child’s room to look like a hospital ward or an old lady’s house! But choosing the right shade of paint is more complicated than just picking one at random. Here are some tips on how to pick the perfect color for your needs!

What Color Should Be Avoided For A Nursery? How Does Color Affect A Baby?

paint roller with white and purple paint chips laying on wood table

This is less about what colors should be avoided from a design standpoint and more about what colors should be avoided from a color psychology standpoint.

Yes! Color psychology is a real thing.

It has been proven time and time again that colors have a specific way of influencing your moods.

For example, research has shown that people exposed to cool colors like blue for an extended period tend to feel calmer and more relaxed. Meanwhile, individuals exposed to warm colors such as red or yellow become more alert and aware.

If you want to use yellow, that’s a great color to use, especially if you want something more gender-neutral.

However, according to a color psychologist, the brighter the yellow, the more it incites annoyance. In addition, yellow caused infants to cry more than any other hue in research studies.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t think babies need much more of a reason to cry. I’ll do what I need to do to provide a calming effect in my baby’s room for them!

What paint is best for nursery?

When painting a baby’s room, you want to be sure that you choose low VOC paint.

VOC stands for Volatile Organic Compounds. These are harmful chemicals that are airborne and are very risky to breathe in.

When you’re breathing these chemicals in, they can cause respiratory problems to develop over time, leading to health issues.

It should also be non-toxic because you don’t want to be breathing in things that could lead to you or your child reacting.

The good news is that technically any paint on the market is safe as long as they’re latex paints designed for interior walls.

Our favorite is Clare Paint. They’re a new company, but with personal experience, it is excellent quality paint. It boasts not only low VOC but no VOC. This article helps explain further detail of harmful VOCs.

Can you paint a nursery white?

boho neutral nursery with wood crib

Of course you can!

Sometimes, having a white nursery is the only option you have in rental situations, and it can be a great one!

Again, our team wants to reiterate that you never have to follow trends. If you want to have a nursery with white walls, go for it! Do what works best for you and your family.

Best Cream Paint Color For Nursery

Choosing a cream paint color, in general, is a challenging task. Throw in trying to find the best cream paint color for a nursery that doesn’t make it look cold or sterile is even more difficult.

Here are our top 2 picks for the best cream paint color for your nursery:

Sherwin Williams Alabaster

Sherwin Williams Alabaster nursery with wood dresser mid century modern style
Sherwin Williams Alabaster mid century modern nursery via Vintage Revivals

Alabaster by Sherwin Williams is a warmer white paint color with subtle creamy undertones. It can be an incredible backdrop for a darling little white nursery that feels warm and cozy.

Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace

Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace nursery with white furniture

Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace nursery via Jillian Harris

Chantilly Lace is a very close equivalent to Sherwin Williams Alabaster in that it’s also a warmer white paint color. Chantilly Lace works well as a trim paint color, too, if you’re looking to have more bold walls and a softer white trim paint color.

Best Nursery Paint Colors – Sherwin Williams

Most interior designers and professional painters use Sherwin Williams paint because it’s good quality and readily available. With the hundreds of choices of paint colors, we’ve asked and narrowed it down to a handful of beautiful options from which to choose.

Here are our favorite gender-neutral nursery paint colors from Sherwin Williams:

Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray

Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray walls with white crib in gender neutral nursery
Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray nursery via Living Letter Home

Agreeable Gray is a gorgeous greige paint color. If you’re unfamiliar, greige is just a fancy word for grey and greige mixed. This means this color will be like a beige with grey undertones. Greige paint colors are a great mix of warm and cool, depending on other colors used in the room and your lighting.

Sherwin Williams Sea Salt

Sherwin Williams Sea Salt nursery walls with white clider in a corner and white corner shelves
Sherwin Williams Sea Salt nursery via Texture Design Co

If you’re looking for light and airy, look no further than Sherwin Williams Sea Salt. It’s a beautiful light aqua color that has just enough green to keep it from being too blue and will be sure to liven up any child’s bedroom.

This is an excellent option for either a boy or a girl nursery.

Sherwin Williams Big Bend Beige

Sherwin Williams Big Bend Beige walls in nursery with white glider and ottoman
Sherwin Williams Big Bend Beige nursery via The Greenspring Home

This stunning paint color is a great warm neutral beige paint color. The only caution using Sherwin Williams Big Bend Beige is that this color can make the room feel darker than you may want for a little one’s room in lower lighting situations or smaller spaces.

However, it is still a great option for paint colors for your nursery.

Best Nursery Paint Colors – Benjamin Moore

Benjamin Moore Boothbay Gray

black crib with rattan chair and grid feature wall painted Benjamin Moore Boothbay Gray
Benjamin Moore Boothbay Gray via Design Loves Detail

If our team had to pick one color out of all of these in the designer list of best paint colors for the nursery, it would be this one.

Benjamin Moore Boothbay Gray is a stunning medium-toned blue-gray paint color that can work for any gender. This paint color would be great for an accent wall but could also be used all over. If you didn’t want to commit to an entire accent wall, you could easily do a great half wall with beadboard and wallpaper.

Benjamin Moore Hale Navy

Benjamin Moore Hale Navy feature wall with wood crib and wood changing table and Cameron on the wall
Benjamin Moore Hale Navy nursery feature wall via Haley Simao

Navy blue is a great color for any age and any gender. Just like blue can bring calm and serenity, different shades of blue can bring different feelings. Benjamin Moore Hale Navy is a great, deep navy blue that will work in any area.

You can add accent colors like coral for your baby girl, a brighter green for a little boy, or use white and keep an entirely gender-neutral color palette.

Benjamin Moore Black Jack

Benjamin Moore Black Jack feature wall in nursery with white dresser
Benjamin Moore Black Jack nursery accent wall via My Kind of Sweet

Having a modern black and white nursery can work well to set up a more minimalistic nursery. Benjamin Moore Black Jack is the perfect neutral, slightly cooler black.

You can throw in some stark white furniture or lighter wood tones for a sleek, modern look.

Best Paint Colors for a Girl Nursery

Sherwin Williams Intimate White

Sherwin Williams Intimate White walls with gold crib and big giraffe next to crib
Sherwin Williams Intimate White nursery via Instagram

Having the word white in the title may throw you off, but Sherwin Williams Intimate White is a very light and sweet pale pink paint color.

If you’re looking for the list of great pink paint colors for a nursery, we have you covered in this post here!

Sherwin Williams Malted Milk

Sherwin Williams Malted milk painted trim and feature wall with hanging moses basket in nursery
Sherwin Williams Malted Milk nursery via Jenna Sue Design

Another delicate pink paint color from Sherwin Williams is Malted Milk. It’s a great soft pink for a nursery, and best of all, it can easily be accented with contrasting colors to give it more interest.

Sherwin Williams Upward

Sherwin Williams Upward blue grid wall with emily caroline on the wall above a white crib
Sherwin Williams Upward nursery via Stephanie Hoey Interiors

Typically a beautiful blue paint color like this would be the star of the show in a boy’s nursery, but this goes to show you that any color can work in any space if you want it to.

Sherwin Williams Upward is a gorgeous, very light blue paint color that leans cool. A cool paint color means that its undertones are more blue/purple and will feel softer and airy.

Best Paint Colors for a Boy Nursery

Sherwin Williams Repose Gray

Sherwin Williams Repose Gray walls painted nursery
Sherwin Williams Repose Gray Nursery via Katie Lamb

A gray nursery is a great gender-neutral color. Still, if you’re looking for a good color that will work in a boy nursery, you have to check out Sherwin Williams Repose Gray. It’s a neutral gray with no warm or cool undertones, so it is one of the best grays available for a paint color in a nursery.

Hopefully this has given you some new ideas for paint color choices! We think these are some of the best paint colors for nursery designs, but of course there are hundreds to choose from.

As parents, the most important thing we can do is create a safe and nurturing environment for our children, while also being able to keep it fun and fresh!

The best paint color is one that will last and compliment your child’s personality.

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