Gray Owl vs Classic Gray: What’s the Difference?

Gray Owl vs Classic Gray

Benjamin Moore offers hundreds of gorgeous gray paint colors. Two of their most popular are Gray Owl 2137-60 and Classic Gray OC-23. At first glance, these two medium grays can appear quite similar. But upon closer inspection, there are noticeable differences in their undertones and aesthetics.

In this article, we’ll compare Benjamin Moore’s Gray Owl vs Classic Gray. We’ll analyze undertones, LVRs, real-world photos, and best room applications. By the end, you’ll understand how these two grays differ and which Benjamin Moore gray is the best choice for your space.

Key Differences Between Gray Owl and Classic Gray

Before examining all the details, here is a brief overview of how Gray Owl and Classic Gray differ:

  • Undertones: Gray Owl is a green-gray, Classic Gray is a blue-gray.
  • LRV: Gray Owl has an LRV of 64.51, Classic Gray is darker at 73.67 LRV.
  • Use: Gray Owl works well whole-home, Classic Gray better as an accent.
  • Rooms: Gray Owl suits living rooms and bedrooms, Classic Gray excels in bathrooms.

Now let’s explore Gray Owl vs Classic Gray more in-depth!

Benjamin Moore Gray Owl 2137-60

Gray Owl 2137-60 is a gorgeous green-gray paint color with worldwide popularity. Its versatility and adaptability has broad appeal.

Here are some key details about Gray Owl:

  • LRV: 64.51
  • Undertones: Green-gray
  • Sheen: Available in all paint finishes
  • Rooms: Living rooms, bedrooms, dining rooms, offices
  • Pairs With: Greens, blues, browns, whites

Gray Owl is a medium-dark gray with subtle green undertones. The green influence injects a sense of warmth and nature that prevents Gray Owl from looking too cold.

With an LRV of 64.51, Gray Owl reflects a moderate amount of light. It avoids appearing too dark and somber in a space. The green undertone helps maintain an uplifting vibe.

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This versatile gray pairs beautifully with a wide color palette. Especially pleasing combinations include:

  • Benjamin Moore October Mist
  • Benjamin Moore Hale Navy
  • Benjamin Moore Oxford White
  • Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray

Gray Owl works wonderfully across many rooms. It excels when used as the main color in:

  • Living Rooms
  • Bedrooms
  • Dining Rooms
  • Offices/Studies
  • Entryways

Benjamin Moore Classic Gray OC-23

Classic Gray OC-23 is a gorgeous blue-gray paint color with timeless sophistication. Its neutrality has broad appeal across styles from traditional to modern.

Here are some details about Classic Gray:

  • LRV: 73.67
  • Undertones: Blue-gray
  • Sheen: Available in all finishes
  • Rooms: Bathrooms, kitchens, accent walls
  • Pairs With: Whites, blues, grays

Classic Gray is a medium blue-hued gray. The subtle blue tones provide a crisp, sharp look without appearing too stark or cold.

With an LRV of only 73.67, Classic Gray reflects less light than lighter grays. This gives it more contrast against surrounding colors. The blue undertone maintains an open vibe.

Some pleasing color combinations with Classic Gray include:

  • Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace
  • Benjamin Moore Hale Navy
  • Benjamin Moore White Dove
  • Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray

This cool blue-gray excels when used judiciously as an accent hue in:

  • Bathrooms
  • Kitchens
  • Entryways
  • Accent walls
  • Home offices

Comparing Gray Owl vs Classic Gray

Now that we’ve explored Gray Owl and Classic Gray individually, let’s directly compare the two Benjamin Moore grays:

Light Reflectance

At 64.51 LRV, Gray Owl reflects notably more light than the 73.67 LRV of Classic Gray. Gray Owl will feel brighter and less somber.


The main difference lies in undertones. Gray Owl is a green-gray while Classic Gray is a blue-gray.

Gray Owl’s greenness gives it a natural, relaxing vibe. Classic Gray’s blue tones feel sharper and crisper.


Gray Owl’s versatility makes it great whole-home, especially living rooms and bedrooms. Classic Gray excels as an accent in bathrooms, kitchens, and with dark trim.

Paint Finishes

Both Gray Owl and Classic Gray are available in any sheen from matte to high-gloss. They provide beautiful soft gray finishes.

Gray Owl vs Classic Gray Comparison Chart

Here is an overview of their major differences:

Paint Color Gray Owl 2137-60 Classic Gray OC-23
LRV 64.51 73.67
Undertones Green-gray Blue-gray
Use Whole-home color Accent color
Sheens All finishes All finishes

Real Rooms Painted in Gray Owl and Classic Gray

To better visualize Gray Owl vs Classic Gray, let’s look at real rooms painted in the two Benjamin Moore grays:

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Gray Owl 2137-60

Classic Gray OC-23

The images showcase how Gray Owl takes on a more relaxed, inviting vibe than crisp Classic Gray. But lighting can make them appear somewhat similar at times.

Should You Choose Gray Owl or Classic Gray?

So which Benjamin Moore gray is the better choice for your home – versatile Gray Owl or accent Classic Gray? Here are some tips for deciding:

Pick Gray Owl 2137-60 if you want:

  • A medium green-gray with warmth and versatility
  • Relaxed, livable feel for living and bedrooms
  • Available in any paint finish and sheen
  • A soothing backdrop that calms and uplifts

Choose Classic Gray OC-23 if you want:

  • A medium blue-gray with sharp crispness
  • Cool accent color for bathrooms and kitchens
  • Significant contrast against lighter walls
  • A neutral that adds definition and clarity

If still unsure between the two grays, get samples to paint large swatches on your walls. View at all times of day before deciding. Also pair with your existing furnishings and decor.

Either Benjamin Moore gray you select will provide beauty and adaptability. But the minor contrasts mean one likely suits your goals better.

Ideal Room Applications

Here are some rooms that typically suit Gray Owl and Classic Gray best:

Gray Owl 2137-60

  • Living Rooms
  • Bedrooms
  • Dining Rooms
  • Offices
  • Libraries

Classic Gray OC-23

  • Bathrooms
  • Kitchens
  • Foyers
  • Doors and trim
  • Home theaters

With their versatile grays, Gray Owl and Classic Gray can work in any space. But the above applications tend to maximize their individual strengths.

Design Ideas and Color Pairings

On their own, Gray Owl and Classic Gray create peaceful backdrops for any home style. Complement them with other colors and decor for gorgeous rooms:

Gray Owl Color Pairings

  • Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace (trim/ceilings)
  • Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal (accent wall)
  • Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter (furniture)
  • Warm wood tones

Classic Gray Color Pairings

  • Benjamin Moore Linen White (trim/cabinets)
  • Benjamin Moore Gentleman’s Gray (accent wall)
  • Benjamin Moore White Dove (furniture)
  • Brushed nickel fixtures

Gray Owl vs Classic Gray – Which Gray is Best for You?

When choosing between Gray Owl and Classic Gray, consider your home goals and style:

Pick Gray Owl 2137-60 if you want:

  • A relaxed green-gray suitable for whole-home use
  • Gentle warmth perfect for living rooms and bedrooms
  • Available in any finish from flat to high-gloss
  • A soothing backdrop with natural green tones
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Choose Classic Gray OC-23 if you want:

  • A crisper blue-gray used judiciously as accent
  • Cool sophistication for baths, kitchens, and doors
  • Significant contrast against surrounding colors
  • A neutral that adds clarity and definition

While the two grays share similarities, the minor differences mean one likely suits your space better. Get color samples before deciding between warm Gray Owl and cool Classic Gray.

Frequently Asked Questions

Still trying to decide between Gray Owl vs Classic Gray? Here are answers to common questions:

Is Gray Owl suited for kitchen cabinets?

Definitely! Gray Owl provides a relaxed sophistication for kitchens. Its green undertones give warmth to balance cool countertops. It works beautifully on cabinets.

What colors complement Classic Gray walls?

Classic Gray looks gorgeous paired with crisp whites, navy blues, and charcoal blacks. Its blue-gray coolness also complements warm woods, tans, and cream tones beautifully.

Which gray paint has more green undertones?

Gray Owl has distinct green-gray undertones while Classic Gray leans blue-gray. The subtle greenness of Gray Owl gives it more natural relaxation than sharp Classic Gray.

Can you use Classic Gray in a bedroom?

Yes, Classic Gray can work well in bedrooms, but is better suited to accent walls. Paired with light airy walls, its crisp gray provides nice contrast without feeling too bold and dark.

Is Gray Owl suitable for bathrooms?

Definitely! While Classic Gray may be a more popular bathroom choice, Gray Owl also works wonderfully. Its relaxing green-gray vibe provides a spa-like retreat.


When comparing Benjamin Moore’s Gray Owl vs Classic Gray, the main differences come down to undertones and aesthetics.

  • Gray Owl is a green-gray with warmth ideal for whole-home use in living and bedrooms.
  • Classic Gray is a blue-gray that excels as an accent in bathrooms, kitchens, and with dark trim.

While the two grays share some similarities, the contrasts in undertone and formality help one likely suit your goals better. Consider your space and needs when deciding between versatile Gray Owl and crisp Classic Gray. With large samples, you’ll discover your perfect Benjamin Moore gray with ease!

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