These 9 Gray Tones Are No-Fail Colors for a Baby or Child's Room

Nifty Shades of Gray for Nurseries

Pouf and rocking chair in grey baby's bedroom interior with ladder next to cabinet. Real photo
KatarzynaBialasiewicz / Getty Images

When it comes to picking the perfect nursery neutral, gray is an easy win with a modern twist. It’s clean and versatile and will stand up to just about anything your toddler can dish out. But when it comes to choosing that perfect shade of gray for your space, the process is anything but black and white.

Colorful undertones, such as blue, green, and even pink, give gray its surprising depth and versatility but can result in color clashes if not considered carefully. Natural light can also significantly affect gray paint, bringing out certain tones while burying others. This factor can mean the difference between a cool, soothing space and a dark, dreary one.

  • Color Family: Neutral
  • Complementary Colors: Neutrals do not have complementary colors; they usually work well with most other colors
  • Pairs Well With: Yellow, mint, pink, and blue in nurseries
  • Mood: Dark gray is dramatic, while light gray is soothing
  • Where to Use: It works well in all rooms of the house and is popular in nurseries for its modern, clean aesthetic

Here are the top ideas for the best gray nursery paint colors.

  • 01 of 09

    Best Multipurpose Gray: Sherwin-Williams Repose Gray

    Sherwin Williams Repose Grey SW7015

    The Spruce

    If you need a gray that does it all, Repose Gray by Sherwin-Williams is precisely what you're looking for. Not quite brown enough to be considered greige, this light gray shade boasts very subtle brown and purple undertones—just enough to soften the color, adding depth and warmth. This warm and cozy neutral works particularly well in bright and airy nursery rooms, where light exposure tends to blanch out cooler grays, exposing cold, gloomy tones. That said, it is soft and bright enough to work even in smaller, darker spaces.

  • 02 of 09

    Best Greige: Valspar Gallery Gray

    Valspar Gallery Grey 2006-10B

    The Spruce

    If you are looking for the perfect greige for your nursery, Gallery Gray by Valspar is the perfect shade. This warm, milk chocolate-washed hue looks oh-so-sweet with sandy pinks, pale blues, and creamy white accents. This soothing tone gives off a tranquil, calming vibe—perfect for a child's naptime and bedtime.

    For a DIY paint job that looks like the experts did it, use blue painter's tape. Apply this wax-coated tape along all the baseboards, windows, doors, and the edge where the ceiling meets the wall.

  • 03 of 09

    Best Neutral Gray: Benjamin Moore Stonington Gray

    Benjamin Moore Stonington Grey HC-170

    The Spruce

    In search of something more neutral? Benjamin Moore's Stonington Gray is a passive shade with a “cool gray” look, despite some subtle stormy blue undertones. It looks clean and beautiful against cool white walls and pastel accents, and it's an excellent choice for a modern nursery. It can work well with patterns, textures, and almost everything you want to pair it with.

  • 04 of 09

    Best Cool Gray: Glidden Cool Metalwork Gray

    Glidden Cool Metalwork Grey 50BG 33/025

    The Spruce

    If you think you want a vintage blue-gray meshing well with lace and quilts from a bygone era or an industrial-themed nursery with gears and clockworks, Cool Metalwork Gray by Glidden is your go-to. This striking hue is a medium, ash gray with a definitive blue-gray wash. It works well by itself, set against a lighter gray, and pairs well with dark woods and metal accents.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Best Gray Paired With Navy: Valspar Gravity

    Valspar Gravity 4005-1B

    The Spruce

    If the navy nursery trend has caught your eye, and you’re looking for the perfect gray to help you pull off a dramatic navy accent wall, you can’t go wrong with Gravity by Valspar. This popular gray has the perfect combination of cool blue and green undertones to meld well with a rich navy or a slate blue. Try pairing with Valspar’s Royal Navy or even Smoky Pitch for an easy, no-fail nursery palette you’re practically guaranteed to love.

  • 06 of 09

    Best Warm Gray: Benjamin Moore Balboa Mist

    Benjamin Moore Balboa Mist 1549

    The Spruce

    Need the perfect gray for your little girl’s room? Try Balboa Mist by Benjamin Moore. This romantic gray boasts faint feminine undertones of pink and purple, softening the tone and creating a warming effect without making the shade seem muddy or gloomy. It’s a great choice for lightening darker rooms that may be overwhelmed by a more traditional greige.

    As you prepare the room for painting, begin by unscrewing all electrical light switch and outlet covers from the walls. On the outlet cover's underside, write the brand, name, and model number of the paint you use for when you want to touch up your walls.

  • 07 of 09

    Best Soothing Gray: The Spruce Best Home Calming Gray

    The Spruce Paint swatch in Calming Gray

    The Spruce

    If you're looking for a soothing shade for the nursery, try The Spruce Best Home Calming Gray. This medium silver gray boasts a bevy of calming blue undertones, giving it a clean, almost iridescent quality. Pair with soft pastels and metallic silver accents for a nursery that stands out.

  • 08 of 09

    Best Soft Gray: Valspar Notre Dame

    Valspar Notre Dame 5006 1B

    The Spruce

    On the hunt for a true “neutral” nursery gray? Valspar's Notre Dame is about as neutral as they come. Not too light and not too dark, this simple shade has very little in the way of noticeable undertones. It’s a soft, somewhat cool gray that will work with anything—frankly, this color will work in any room.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Best Light Gray: Sherwin-Williams First Star

    Sherwin Williams First Star 7646

    The Spruce

    If you’re looking for a beautiful, understated shade, Sherwin-Williams' First Star might be the color for you. This soft and versatile gray offers cool undertones that can flex blue or blue-green while maintaining its subtle, barely-there charm.