Snowbound vs. Alabaster: Which One Is Perfect for You?

Whether you’re renovating your home or sprucing up a room, you’ll likely have to incorporate white into your space’s color palette. 

Now it’s easy to confuse one white paint color for another, especially when you’re choosing between seemingly similar options like the ever-popular Snowbound and Alabaster from Sherwin-Williams. 

White Interior decoration plan with printed paint samples

So if you want to learn more about the differences between Snowbound vs. Alabaster so you can determine which one works best for your space, read on! 

We’ve created the ultimate guide to these two paint colors, giving you an in-depth look at their characteristics and exploring how they affect different spaces. 

Snowbound vs. Alabaster: A Quick Comparison

ColorA cooler white with subtle gray and pink undertonesA warmer white with neutral beige undertones
AestheticMakes a space feel fresh, modern, and clean; goes with minimalist Gives a room a classic, warm, and cozy feel
LRV (Light Reflectance Value)8382
Suitable For Interior and exterior applications, including walls, trim, and cabinetryInterior and exterior applications, including walls, trim, and cabinetry
Best Used InBedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms, home officesBedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms, nurseries, entryways with less natural light
Coordinating ColorsGrays, light and dark neutrals, and bold and cool colors like green and purpleWarm neutrals like brown and tan colors and soft or dark cool colors

Comparing Snowbound vs. Alabaster

Let’s dive deep into the similarities and differences between these two timeless and versatile white paint colors. 

a realistic image of a small modern house, exterior large walls painted in Alabaster paint, with trees and plants, windows

Color and Undertones

Sherwin-Williams describes Snowbound as a cool white, but many say it’s actually slightly warm when applied. 

What lends some coolness to it is its gray and pink undertones, which can become more pronounced in certain lighting conditions.

Compared to Snowbound, Alabaster is warmer and creamier. It has a pronounced greige undertone that leans more toward beige or yellow. 

Light Reflectance Value (LRV)

Alabaster and Snowbound also differ in light reflectance value but not by much. 

Light reflectance value (LRV) measures how much light a color reflects and ranges from 0 (black) to 100 (white).

Alabaster has an LRV of 82, while Snowbound has an LRV of 83. So they’re both very close to true white, although Snowbound is just a tad brighter. 

Response to Light

It’s important to note that the undertones of Snowbound and Alabaster can affect how they look in different lighting conditions.

  • South-facing rooms or any room with plenty of natural light — Under ample natural light, Snowbound reveals more of its warmth, looking even softer while maintaining its bright, clean appearance.

    The opposite is true for Alabaster. This paint color can appear excessively yellow in rooms that get a lot of sunlight.

    So Snowbound is usually better for south-facing rooms than Alabaster. 
a realistic image of a farmhouse inspired bedroom, large walls painted in snowboard colored paint, white paint
  • North-facing rooms or any room with dim or indirect natural light — Snowbound’s gray undertone becomes more prominent in dimmer lighting, which — in some cases — can result in a somewhat muddy look.

    On the flip side, Alabaster’s warmth and lightness can come through in any room with weak or cool light, brightening up the space. 


As white paint colors, Snowbound and Alabaster are both adaptable to a wide variety of interior styles. 

But because of the slight distinctions in their undertones, Snowbound and Alabaster may lend a somewhat different feel to and create a distinct aesthetic in certain spaces. 

Since Alabaster looks creamier, it tends to give rooms a cozier vibe than Snowbound. So it’s ideal for organic or rustic styles like farmhouse and Bohemian. 

Snowbound, on the other hand, has a crisp, fresh look. It’s often described as a less stark or harsh alternative to true white, so it’s suitable for a softer take on minimalist and contemporary styles. 

Using Snowbound vs. Alabaster in Different Rooms

When it comes to choosing between Snowbound and Alabaster for your home, it’s important to consider which rooms you’ll be using them in. 

Here are some tips for using these colors in different areas of your home:

Exterior Walls

When using Snowbound for your home’s exteriors, remember that pairing it with crisp white or dark-colored trim can bring out its subtle warmth and prevent a drab appearance. 

You can also use Snowbound for the trim itself, especially if you want to steer clear of overly harsh whites. 

Meanwhile, Alabaster also makes for an excellent choice for exterior walls! In fact, it won’t look as yellow or creamy when used on exteriors as it does when painted all over your interior walls.

a realistic image of a small modern house, exterior large walls painted in Alabaster paint, with trees and plants, windows

Interior Walls

We can confidently say Snowbound and Alabaster can beautify any space in your home, including your kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, living area, or home office!

So what you’ll have to consider when choosing between the two is the look you’re aiming for and the decor and furniture you have. 

Snowbound, with its brighter and more neutral white color, can contribute to a clean and modern but still homey aesthetic. It pairs well with sharp lines, metallic finishes, and cool colors to enhance a contemporary space.

On the other hand, Alabaster, with its creamy warmth and subtle beige undertones, gives spaces an inviting appearance. It complements rich textures like wood, natural fibers, and warmer color palettes.

Furniture, Cabinetry, and Other Uses

If you want a bolder or darker color than white for your home, you can instead use Snowbound or Alabaster to paint your furniture or cabinets.  

For example, in a sunlit kitchen with ample natural light, Snowbound could give a crisp, clean look to the cabinets. 

Now in a living room with dimmer, warm-toned lighting, drawers painted in Alabaster can add to the room’s welcoming ambiance.

Snowbound vs. Alabaster: Coordinating Colors

Have you decided which between Snowbound and Alabaster better suits your needs? Awesome!

The next thing you need to do is find the right coordinating colors. The good news is that both Snowbound and Alabaster are flexible enough to pair with a wide range of hues. 

Below are some color pairing recommendations from Sherwin Williams:

Ideal Color Pairings for Snowbound

  • Blues: Consider soft blues like Misty Or Rain by Sherwin Williams to complement Snowbound’s equally soft hue and cool undertones.

    For those who dare to go bold, Naval (a chic navy) from Sherwin-Williams can be a daring yet delightful choice.
a realistic image of a beautiful bedroom, large walls painted in Snowbound paint, snow white colored walls, light blue colored ceiling, light blue colored bed frames
  • Greens: Sea Salt, Comfort Gray, and Rainwashed are harmonious choices, imparting a refreshing aura to spaces painted in Snowbound.
  • Neutrals: Neutral grays such as Repose Gray, Agreeable Gray, or Mindful Gray can beautifully accentuate Snowbound’s brightness.

    If you’re inclined toward slightly warmer neutrals, Perfect Greige, Anew Gray, or Warm Stone are great picks.

Ideal Color Pairings for Alabaster

  • Yellows: For a cohesive color palette, pair Alabaster rooms with Daybreak or Dakota Wheat. 
  • Oranges: Add some zest to Alabaster-dominant rooms like Copper Harbor, Cayenne, or Tangerine.
  • Blues: To maintain a serene vibe, go for Languid Blue or Wishful Blue. These cool hues offer a contrast to Alabaster that’s striking but never overwhelming.
  • Neutrals: Light, warm neutrals like Crushed Ice and Ethereal Mood can complement Alabaster’s airy appearance. If you want deeper neutrals to contrast with the brightness of Alabaster, consider grays like Urbane Bronze.  
a realistic image of a breakfast nook, large walls painted in alabster paint, windows, orange tables and chairs, orange curtains, plants

FAQs About Snowbound vs. Alabaster

What Colors Should I Avoid Pairing With Snowbound and Alabaster?

Cool whites may make Alabaster look a little too yellow, while warm whites can bring out too much of Snowbound’s gray undertone. 

Which Paint Sheen Should I Choose for Snowbound and Alabaster?

This will depend on how and where you want to use the paint colors. 

If you want to use them for the walls of your living room, dining room, or bedroom, eggshell or satin is ideal. It offers a slight shine, and it’s easy to wipe clean.

But if you want to use them for your trim, semi-gloss and high gloss may be better options. They can deemphasize imperfections and withstand mold or mildew.

Can You Use Snowbound and Alabaster Together?

The undertones of these two paint colors may clash, so it’s not ideal to pair them together in most cases.

a realistic image of a farmhouse inspired bedroom, large walls painted in snowboard colored paint, white paint

Snowbound vs. Alabaster: Which White Paint Do You Prefer?

With this guide, you can now distinguish more easily between Snowbound and Alabaster and understand their differences! 

This means you can choose the right white Sherwin Williams paint color that suits your home’s color palette and matches your style preferences. 

Whether you choose Snowbound or Alabaster, you can be confident that both colors can create a beautiful and timeless look in your space!

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