Collingwood vs Balboa Mist: What’s the Difference?

Collingwood vs Balboa Mist

Benjamin Moore offers gorgeous cool-toned gray paint colors perfect for creating serene, relaxing backdrops. Two of their most popular are Collingwood OC-28 and Balboa Mist OC-27. Both are beautiful, versatile grays that suit a wide range of home décor styles. But what’s the difference, and which one is right for your home?

In this guide, we’ll break down Collingwood and Balboa Mist paint colors in depth. We’ll compare undertones, light reflectance values (LRV), aesthetics, real-life photos, and ideal room applications for each gray. Read on to determine whether soft blue Collingwood or airy Balboa Mist is the best light gray paint color for your interior design needs.

Key Differences Between Collingwood and Balboa Mist

Before diving into specifics, here is an overview of the main differences between Benjamin Moore Collingwood OC-28 and Balboa Mist OC-27:

  • Undertones – Collingwood has blue-gray undertones, Balboa Mist has purple-gray undertones
  • Light Reflectance – Collingwood has an LRV of 61.52, Balboa Mist has an LRV of 65.53
  • Use – Collingwood complements traditional styles, Balboa Mist contemporary spaces
  • Rooms – Collingwood excels in cozy rooms, Balboa Mist open floor plans

Now let’s explore Collingwood and Balboa Mist more closely.

Benjamin Moore Collingwood OC-28

A gorgeous neutral gray paint color, Collingwood OC-28 creates a soft, relaxing backdrop for any space. This versatile color complements styles from modern farmhouse to traditional.

Here are some key details about Benjamin Moore Collingwood:

  • LRV: 61.52
  • Undertones: Blue-gray
  • Finish: Available in all sheens
  • Rooms: Bedrooms, living rooms, offices
  • Color Pairings: Tans, blues, whites

Featuring light blue-gray undertones, Collingwood has a slightly hazy, ethereal appearance. Depending on lighting conditions, it can read as a very light sky blue-influenced gray or deeper slate blue-gray. This chameleon-like ability makes Collingwood highly versatile.

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At 61.52 light reflectance, Collingwood reflects enough light to keep rooms feeling open without being too stark. The soft blue-gray tone creates a peaceful, relaxing ambiance perfect for bedrooms and other intimate spaces.

Collingwood works well across many interior design aesthetics. Use it to create a serene, welcoming backdrop for living spaces including:

  • Bedrooms
  • Living Rooms
  • Bathrooms
  • Offices
  • Dining Rooms

Some colors that pair beautifully with Collingwood include:

  • Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace
  • Benjamin Moore White Dove
  • Benjamin Moore Gray Owl
  • Benjamin Moore Desert Twilight

Benjamin Moore Balboa Mist OC-27

A bestselling gray paint color, Balboa Mist OC-27 is a gorgeous pale blue-gray that creates an airy, tranquil backdrop. This versatile color complements styles from modern to coastal.

Here are some key details about Benjamin Moore Balboa Mist:

  • LRV: 65.53
  • Undertones: Purple-gray
  • Finish: Available in all sheens
  • Rooms: Whole home color, open concept spaces
  • Color Pairings: Whites, grays, blues

Featuring soft purple-gray undertones, Balboa Mist has a relaxed yet refined appearance. Depending on lighting it can read as a clean light gray or take on a slight airy blue cast. This adaptability makes the color highly versatile.

With a 65.53 light reflectance value, Balboa Mist reflects considerable light to keep rooms feeling open and ethereal. The pale blue-gray tone provides a soothing, tranquil feel.

Use Balboa Mist OC-27 to create a gorgeous backdrop that transitions seamlessly between traditional and contemporary styles. Its versatile pale gray works beautifully across home areas including:

  • Living Rooms
  • Kitchens
  • Bathrooms
  • Dining Rooms
  • Open Concept Spaces

Some colors that complement Balboa Mist perfectly include:

  • Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace
  • Benjamin Moore Coventry Gray
  • Benjamin Moore White Dove
  • Benjamin Moore Hygge Gray

Comparing Collingwood vs Balboa Mist

Now that we’ve looked at Collingwood and Balboa Mist paint colors individually, let’s compare them directly:

Light Reflectance

Balboa Mist is noticeably lighter than Collingwood, with LRVs of 65.53 vs 61.52 respectively. Balboa Mist will make spaces feel more bright and airy.


While both are blue-toned grays, Collingwood has a true blue-gray base while Balboa Mist has subtle purple-gray influence.


The soft blue tones of Collingwood complement traditional and transitional spaces beautifully. Balboa Mist’s purple-gray pops in modern contemporary rooms.


Collingwood’s warmth excels in cozier bedrooms and private offices. Balboa Mist’s brightness shines in open concept kitchens, living rooms and baths.

Paint Finish

Benjamin Moore offers both Collingwood and Balboa Mist in any sheen from matte to high-gloss.

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Collingwood coordinates well with tans, light blues, and warm metals. Balboa Mist pairs nicely with grays, blues, and cool metallics.

Collingwood vs Balboa Mist Comparison Chart

Here is an overview comparison between Benjamin Moore Collingwood OC-28 and Balboa Mist OC-27:

Paint Color Collingwood OC-28 Balboa Mist OC-27
LRV 61.52 65.53
Undertones Blue-gray Purple-gray
Use Traditional, transitional Modern, contemporary
Rooms Bedrooms, offices Open concept living areas
Sheens All finishes All finishes
Pairings Tans, light blues Grays, blues, cool metallics

Real Life Photos: Collingwood vs Balboa Mist

To give a sense of how Collingwood and Balboa Mist compare in actual spaces, let’s look at real life photos of the paint colors:

Collingwood OC-28

Balboa Mist OC-27

Balboa Mist

In real world spaces, Collingwood appears softer and slightly deeper than the lighter, cooler Balboa Mist. But different lighting can impact their look. Overall, Collingwood is more relaxing while Balboa Mist feels brighter and more refreshing.

Should I Choose Collingwood or Balboa Mist?

So how do you choose between Benjamin Moore Collingwood or Balboa Mist for your home? Here are some tips:

Consider Collingwood OC-28 if you want:

  • A soft, soothing blue-influenced gray
  • A relaxed, peaceful ambiance for bedrooms
  • To complement traditional and boho aesthetics
  • To coordinate with tans, light blues and warm metals

Consider Balboa Mist OC-27 if you want:

  • A brighter, paler blue-gray
  • To make the space feel more open and airy
  • A backdrop suitable for modern coastal styles
  • A light alternative to cool harsher grays

To decide, get samples and paint large swatches in your actual space. View at different times of day when lighting changes. See how the undertones come across and affect the mood of the room.

While both are stunning grays, Collingwood leans traditional for cozy retreats and Balboa Mist modern for open airy plans. Choose what best suits your goals!

Best Rooms for Collingwood and Balboa Mist

Here are rooms that tend to be perfectly suited to Collingwood OC-28 and Balboa Mist OC-27:

Collingwood OC-28

  • Bedrooms
  • Offices
  • Living Rooms
  • Dining Rooms
  • Bathrooms

Balboa Mist OC-27

  • Living Rooms
  • Kitchens
  • Bathrooms
  • Open floor plans
  • Dining Rooms

Of course both grays can work in any space. But the above applications maximize their unique strengths – Collingwood’s coziness and Balboa Mist’s airy brightness.

Design Ideas Using Collingwood and Balboa Mist

On their own, Collingwood and Balboa Mist create simple backdrops. Use other paint colors, textures and decor to make complete room designs:

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Collingwood Color Pairings

  • Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace (trim/ceiling)
  • Benjamin Moore Gray Owl (accent wall)
  • Brass light fixtures
  • Light oak wood furniture

Balboa Mist Color Pairings

  • Benjamin Moore Oxford White (trim/cabinets)
  • Benjamin Moore Hale Navy (front door)
  • Quartz countertops
  • Navy and gray textiles

Collingwood vs Balboa Mist: Which is Better for Your Home?

Is cozy Collingwood or airy Balboa Mist the better light gray paint color for your space? It depends on your goals and style:

Consider Collingwood if you want:

  • A soft, relaxing blue-influenced gray
  • A peaceful ambiance for bedrooms and offices
  • To complement traditional and boho styles
  • To coordinate with tans, light blues and warm metals

Consider Balboa Mist if you want:

  • A brighter, paler blue-gray
  • An ethereal backdrop for open modern spaces
  • A light alternative to bolder gray tones
  • A tranquil feel for whole home use

Collingwood excels in creating cozy retreats in bedrooms and smaller rooms. Balboa Mist shines in airy kitchens, living areas, and whole home plans.

Be sure to get large in-home paint samples before deciding. Both provide gorgeous light gray versatility – choose the one that fulfills your goals!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about Benjamin Moore Collingwood OC-28 and Balboa Mist OC-27:

What are the main differences between Collingwood and Balboa Mist?

The main differences are their undertones and lightness. Collingwood is a darker blue-gray while Balboa Mist is a lighter purple-gray.

Does Collingwood have any green or brown in it?

No, Collingwood does not have noticeable green or brown undertones. It reads as a true blue-influenced gray.

What colors complement Balboa Mist?

Colors like white, light gray, navy, and even pale greens complement Balboa Mist well. Its purple-gray tone provides great versatility.

Is Collingwood suitable for a nursery?

Yes, the soft blue-gray Collingwood is perfect for a nursery. At 61.52 LRV it provides enough light without being too bright and stimulating.

Can you use Balboa Mist in a bathroom?

Definitely. Balboa Mist’s 65.53 LRV prevents bathrooms from feeling dark while still providing a relaxing ambiance. Its blue-purple undertone is soothing.

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