SW Dover White Vs BM White Dove: What’s the Difference?

SW Dover White Vs BM White Dove

When selecting the perfect crisp, clean white paint color, subtle differences between shades can be hard to discern. Two popular classics are Sherwin-Williams Dover White SW 6385 and Benjamin Moore White Dove OC-17. At first glance they appear nearly identical, but there are some key contrasts between the two off-whites.

In this article, we’ll thoroughly compare Dover White vs White Dove. We’ll analyze undertones, light reflectance levels, real life photos, best rooms to use, and more. Read on to determine which white is the right fit for your space.

Key Differences Between Dover White and White Dove

Before diving into greater detail, here is an overview of the main distinctions between Dover White and White Dove:

  • Undertones – Dover White has a warm undertone, White Dove is a true neutral
  • Light Reflectance – Dover White has an LRV of 83, White Dove has an LRV of 83.16
  • Use – Dover White suits traditional homes, White Dove fits all styles
  • Rooms – Dover White excels in cozy spaces, White Dove brightens any room
  • Availability – Dover White comes in fewer finishes

Now let’s explore Dover White and White Dove more thoroughly.

Sherwin-Williams Dover White SW 6385

Sherwin-Williams Dover White SW 6385

With its subtle warm undertone, Sherwin-Williams Dover White SW 6385 provides a gorgeous soft white backdrop. This welcoming paint color creates coziness without sacrificing cleanliness.

Here are some details about Dover White:

  • LRV: 83
  • Undertones: Subtle warm
  • Finish: Eggshell, satin, semi-gloss
  • Rooms: Bedrooms, living rooms, dining rooms
  • Pairs Well With: Warm neutrals, wood tones

Dover White has a barely noticeable warm undertone. This gives the white a natural, inviting sensibility rather than a stark clinical feel.

The 83 light reflectance provides ample brightness, though a touch less than the truest whites. The subtle warmth creates softness.

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With its barely-there warmth, Dover White beautifully complements traditional and transitional design styles. Use it alongside natural textures and materials like wood furniture and greenery accents. Ideal Dover White rooms include:

  • Bedrooms and nurseries
  • Living rooms and dens
  • Dining rooms
  • Offices, studies, libraries
  • Entryways and halls

Benjamin Moore White Dove OC-17

As Benjamin Moore’s most popular white paint color, White Dove OC-17 works beautifully across styles from modern to farmhouse. This versatile all-purpose neutral brightens up any space.

Here are some key details about beloved White Dove:

  • LRV: 83.16
  • Undertones: True neutral
  • Finish: Available in all paint sheens
  • Rooms: Suitable for any room
  • Pairs Well With: All color schemes

With its perfectly balanced undertone, White Dove reads as a true white that complements any design aesthetic. The 83.16 light reflectance provides sufficient brightness without starkness.

As a true neutral, White Dove pairs nicely with absolutely any color scheme. Its versatility makes it foolproof for every room in homes of all styles. Popular uses include:

  • Living rooms, bedrooms, and nurseries
  • Kitchens, baths, laundry rooms
  • Doors, trim, moldings, ceilings
  • Dining rooms, offices, hallways

Comparing Dover White vs White Dove

Now that we’ve examined Dover White and White Dove individually, let’s compare them directly:

Light Reflectance

Dover White has an LRV of 83 compared to White Dove’s 83.16. This means Dover White reflects slightly more light. However, they are quite close in illumination power.


Here is where the main difference lies. Dover White has the slightest warm undertone, while White Dove is a true neutral white.

The faint warmth gives Dover White a natural, inviting sensibility perfect for traditional spaces. White Dove’s neutrality offers flexibility.


Due to its subtle warmth, Dover White excels in cozier living areas like bedrooms, dining rooms, and lounges.

White Dove’s neutrality allows it to brighten up any room in the house beautifully.


Dover White comes in 3 finishes – eggshell, satin and semi-gloss. White Dove offers the full spectrum from matte to high gloss.

Dover White vs White Dove Comparison Chart

Here is an overview of how Dover White and White Dove compare:

Paint Color Dover White SW 6385 White Dove OC-17
LRV 83 83.16
Undertones Subtle warm True neutral
Use Cozy living spaces Suitable for all rooms
Sheens 3 sheens All sheens
Style Traditional, transitional Versatile for any style

Real Life Photos – Dover White vs White Dove

Let’s look at real life spaces painted in Dover White and White Dove to better evaluate how they compare in actual room settings and lighting.

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Dover White SW 6385

Real Life Photos Sherwin-Williams Dover White SW 6385

White Dove OC-17

White Dove

The real life photos demonstrate how Dover White typically reads as slightly warmer and softer than the brighter White Dove. However, depending on lighting they can appear quite similar.

Should I Choose Dover White or White Dove?

So how do you decide between Sherwin-Williams Dover White vs Benjamin Moore White Dove for your space? Here are some factors to guide your decision:

Consider Dover White SW 6385 if you want:

  • A white with the subtlest hint of warmth
  • A soft, inviting backdrop for traditional decor
  • A comfortable feel for cozy living areas
  • A versatile neutral that pairs well with oak

Consider White Dove OC-17 if you want:

  • A true neutral white with zero undertones
  • Maximum brightness and light reflection
  • Benjamin Moore’s most popular versatile white
  • A white that works beautifully in any room

Always get paint samples before fully committing. View large swatches on your walls in different lighting at different times. This will give you the best sense of which white you prefer before deciding.

While Dover White suits traditional cozy spaces, White Dove’s neutrality gives it wider appeal. Choose the one that best matches your goals.

Ideal Rooms for Dover White and White Dove

Though they work well throughout homes, here are some spaces ideally suited to Dover White and White Dove based on their traits:

Dover White SW 6385

This soft white with subtle warmth excels in cozier living areas. Use Dover White in:

  • Bedrooms and nurseries
  • Living rooms, dens, family rooms
  • Dining rooms, kitchens
  • Offices, studies, libraries
  • Entryways, halls, foyers

White Dove OC-17

This universally flattering neutral brightens up any space beautifully. Ideal rooms for White Dove:

  • Kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms
  • Living rooms, bedrooms, playrooms
  • Dining rooms, offices, libraries
  • Entryways, halls, staircases
  • Moldings, ceilings, doors

Both can work as all-over whites. But the above applications optimize each based on strengths.

Decorating Ideas and Color Pairings

On their own, Dover White and White Dove create peaceful backdrops. Paired with colors and materials, you can design gorgeous spaces:

Dover White SW 6385 Ideas

  • Cozy living room with white shiplap walls and stone fireplace
  • Warm white kitchen cabinets with natural wood counters
  • White wainscoting against sky blue upper walls
  • Crisp white paneled doors in an entryway

White Dove OC-17 Ideas

  • Bright white open concept kitchen/living area
  • Vivid green accent wall against pristine white backdrop
  • Modern white kitchen with black island
  • Farmhouse bathroom with classic white shiplap
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Color Pairings for Both

  • Navy blues, grays, greens, browns, wood tones
  • Black and white graphic prints and patterns
  • Metallic finishes like brass, silver, gold
  • Bold accent colors like red, orange, teal

Keep walls bright white to let accent colors truly pop. Easily change accents seasonally for fresh looks.

Dover White vs White Dove – Which is Best For You?

So what’s better for your home – Sherwin-Williams Dover White or Benjamin Moore White Dove? The right choice depends on your goals:

Pick Dover White SW 6385 if you want:

  • Subtle warmth for a welcoming backdrop
  • A comfortably cozy feel for living spaces
  • A soft versatile neutral for traditional decor
  • To complement oak wood tones

Choose White Dove OC-17 if you want:

  • A true neutral white with zero undertones
  • Maximum light reflection and brightness
  • Benjamin Moore’s beloved versatile white
  • A foolproof white for diverse rooms and styles

Get large in-home paint samples before deciding. While flexible White Dove works almost anywhere, Dover White’s subtle warmth gives it an advantage in traditionally styled homes seeking a welcoming soft backdrop.

Select the white that best suits your lighting, furnishings, and interior design vision. Either will serve as a gorgeous foundational color.

Frequently Asked Questions

Still trying to choose between Dover White and White Dove? Here are some commonly asked questions:

Is Dover White warm, neutral or cool?

Dover White SW 6385 is on the warm end of the color spectrum. It has the slightest hint of warmth that provides a welcoming backdrop.

What undertone does White Dove have?

White Dove OC-17 is a true neutral white, meaning it does not lean warm or cool. The perfect balance provides maximum versatility.

Can you use Dover White on ceilings?

Yes, Dover White can work well on ceilings. Despite the subtle warmth, the 83 LRV still provides good brightening.

What sheens is White Dove available in?

White Dove comes in Benjamin Moore’s complete line of paint sheens from matte flat to high gloss enamel. This makes it easy to get any desired finish.

Which white would look best with maple cabinets?

Dover White’s barely-there warmth would complement natural maple cabinetry nicely for a cohesive, welcoming look.

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