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Shelley Ferguson's top white paint picks

Whites with Resene from Good magazine

White paint creates a fresh foundation for any interior but choosing the right one can make you go cross-eyed. I've chosen my favourite white Resene paints for three interior styles.

Shelley Ferguson

Pro Tip — Paint your entire interior the same white, including ceilings, skirtings, architraves and doors to create a more high-end, modern look. Vary the sheen levels for practicality, like Resene Lustacryl semi-gloss for frames and doors and Resene SpaceCote Flat tinted to your chosen white for ceilings.

Contemporary whites

These are whites with a black base that are very crisp and cool, suit interiors with white, grey and black accents, and help tone down warm bright light.

Complementary accent colours: blues, purples, greens.

Natural whites

These are almost-whites that have a subtle warm undertone and suit modern interiors with lots of natural tones and textures.

Complementary accent colours: sand, ivory, taupe, dusky pastels.

Modern Classic whites

These are whites with warm undertones and suit cosy interiors that have lots of rich, natural furnishings, or cooler spaces that need warming up.

Complementary accent colours: coral, peach, terracotta, mustard, ochre, rusty reds.

How to test white paints:

  1. Start by selecting a few whites you like from a collection like the Resene Whites and Neutrals palettes.

  2. Pick up A2 cards, testpots and testpot paintbrushes from your local Resene ColorShop.

  3. Paint two coats of each white on a different card, leaving a white border to create visual separation from any other colours when you hold it up to the wall.

  4. Place the cards in different rooms at different times of the day and night to see how the white varies.

  5. Check how the white looks with your furnishings – are the undertones off or just right?

Photo credits: Kate Sylvester Meg top,; and Knuefermann 'Sandra Weil' pants,

Good magazine. May 2023

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Colours shown on this website are a representation only. Please refer to the actual paint or product sample. Resene colour charts, testpots and samples are available for ordering online.   See measurements/conversions for more details on how electronic colour values are achieved.

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