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Benjamin Moore Pale Oak: a complete color review

Looking for the perfect light neutral paint color? Let’s talk about Benjamin Moore Pale Oak – undertones, coordinating colors, and trim colors – and if it might be right for your home!

Picking paint colors is tough! Even if you want something simple – a white, a gray, a neutral – there are SO MANY CHOICES!

Today we are going to talk about Benjamin Moore Pale Oak, and my Pale Oak paint color review.

Pale Oak is a versatile neutral paint color. It is super popular because it is light and bright but still warm toned, making a space feel cozy and inviting.

This color is a warm gray-beige (greige) that reads a touch more beige than gray.

Click here to get a peel and stick sample of Pale Oak.

Benjamin Moore Pale Oak paint color guide

Benjamin Moore Pale Oak OC-20

Color Family

The Pale Oak paint color is in the warm neutral gray or greige paint color family.

Light Reflectance Value

69.89 – Pale Oak has an LRV that makes it light and bright, but definitely darker than white (LRV 80 or above).

Light Reflective Value is the measurement of how much light a color bounces around. This is on a scale of 0 to 100 with 0 being pure black and 100 being pure white.

benjamin moore pale oak color swatch

RGB Colors

R:222 G:216 B:205

RGB describes the amount of each color – red, green, and blue – present in a color. This is on a scale of 0 to 255 for each color. This is basically the color mix to make the color!

Hex Code


Pale Oak Undertones

Pale Oak has warm, yellow undertones.

In rooms with bright, south-facing windows and a lot of natural light, the color will be more washed out. Pale Oak will appear more like a creamy off white paint color.

On the other hand, north facing rooms without much natural light will appear darker and more gray due to the cooler light (or lack of warm, yellowed light coming in). This can lead to pink or even purple undertones in darker rooms.

Click here to get a peel and stick sample of Pale Oak.

benjamin moore pale oak living room

Best uses for Pale Oak

This color is universal enough that it could definitely be used as a whole house paint color. However, it is important to remember that the lighting of each room can effect how the color looks on the walls. So, you could use this color in your whole house and it look different in different spaces.

Always swatch colors in every room before committing to them.

This color also works great for:

  • Living rooms
  • Bedrooms
  • Furniture – pair with white walls for soft contrast
  • Exteriors
  • Kitchen or bathroom cabinets

Similar Colors

  • Benjamin Moore Balboa Mist
  • Benjamin Moore Athena
  • Behr Misty Cove
  • Sherwin Williams Riverstone
  • Behr White Cloud
  • Valspar Woodlawn Snow

Coordinating Colors

You have a few options for Pale Oak Color Schemes!

Other soft, creamy paint colors pair nicely for tone-on-tone layered looks.

Or, for contrast, consider a deep, rich accent color.

Click here for all of my favorite colors to pair with Pale Oak.

Creamy Whites:

  • BM White Dove
  • BM Cloud White
  • SW Alabaster
  • BM Healing Aloe
  • BM Ivory White

Deep Earth Tones:

  • BM Hale Navy
  • BM Red River Clay
  • BM Chelsea Gray
  • BM Newburg Green
  • BM French Beret

Click here to get a peel and stick sample of Pale Oak.

benjamin moore pale oak kitchen

Trim Colors

Pale Oak pairs well with a soft white paint color for trim. This will bring out the creaminess in the color without creating too much harsh contrast.

Soft white trim colors:

Benjamin Moore Pale Oak Color Palette

Want to use this paint color in your home? Instantly upgrade your home’s aesthetic with our exclusive paint color palette. Unlock the perfect trim color and six stunning accent colors, a combination of neutrals and bold hues for an instantly harmonious space!

Get your perfect paint color palette by clicking here!

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Pale Oak FAQs

Is Benjamin Moore pale oak a popular color?

Yes – this color is very popular! It is a creamy off white with a hint of gray to it – making it super versatile and universally appealing!

Is Benjamin Moore pale oak warm or cool?

Pale Oak is a very neutral paint color, with hints of both warm and cool tones. However, due to the prevailing golden yellow undertones, it is considered a warm toned paint color.

Is pale oak more gray or beige?

Pale oak is more beige than gray. However, if you have very bright natural light, that can make it look off white. On the other hand, low light rooms will look more cool and gray toned. Always swatch paint in your actual room!

Egret White vs Pale Oak

egret white vs pale oak

Egret White are both shades of creamy off white and are both very popular neutral paint color options.

These colors both have an LRV of 70, which makes them almost the same darkness. Combine that with them both being in the warm, creamy, off-white category and there’s no wonder the colors are considered so similar!

Since these colors have the same color depth and color family, their main difference is in undertone.

Egret White has a lot more pink or purple to it. On the other hand, Pale Oak’s warmth comes from yellow and golden tones.

Read my complete comparison of Pale Oak vs Egret White here!

Accessible Beige vs Pale Oak

SW accessible beige vs BM pale oak

Accessible Beige is much more of a true beige paint color, while Pale Oak is a creamy, off white. They are really quite different!

Click here to read my full comparison of Accessible Beige vs Pale Oak!

Agreeable Gray vs Pale Oak

agreeable gray vs pale oak

Agreeable Gray and Pale Oak are both, light, bright, and warm toned neutral paint colors. Agreeable Gray is quite a bit darker than Pale Oak and has more pink undertones, while Pale Oak is lighter and more yellow.

Click here to read my full comparison of Agreeable Gray vs Pale Oak here!

Edgecomb Gray vs Pale Oak

edgecomb gray vs pale oak

These colors are nearly identical at a glance! Upon further inspection, Pale Oak is airier while Edgecomb Gray has more color depth (is darker). Pale Oak is also slightly more muted and occasionally reads as lavender (in Northern light) while Edgecomb Gray is more yellow and warmer.

Click here to read my complete comparison of Edgecomb Gray vs Pale Oak.

What Colors go with Benjamin Moore pale oak?

Pale Oak pairs nicely with light, creamy white or off white colors. For more contrast, pair it with a deep, full toned accent color.

benjamin moore pale oak exterior

Is pale oak too gray?

If your room doesn’t get much natural light, Pale Oak might look too gray for you. In well lit rooms, it is not too gray at all.

Is pale oak a taupe?

Pael Oak is technically a greige paint color. It has more gray to it than your traditional taupe or beige color has.

Is pale oak purple?

Pale Oak can have slightly purple undertones in low-lit rooms (or rooms with the overhead lights on at night). Always test swatches and look at them day and night!

Does Benjamin Moore pale oak look pink?

Pale Oak can also have slightly pink undertones in low-lit north facing rooms (or rooms with the overhead lights on at night). Always test swatches and look at them day and night!

Does pale oak go with beige?

Pale Oak is a shade of beige, so you want to be careful pairing it with other beiges. They sometimes can clash. I prefer to go with something with a LRV at least 10 different (lighter or darker) for more color depth contrast.

What is lighter than Benjamin Moore pale oak?

Pale Oak is Benjamin Moore OC-20. So, OC-19, Sea Pearl, is one shade lighter on the color strip than Pale Oak.

Is pale oak lighter than Balboa mist?

Balboa mist has a LRV of 67 while Pale oak is 70. They are almost the same, but Pale Oak is slightly lighter than Balboa Mist.

Does pale oak go with Chantilly lace?

Chantilly lace is a great clean, bright white color that pairs very nicely with Pale Oak.

Does pale oak go with white dove?

Yes – White Dove and Pale Oak have similar undertones but different LRVs (White Dove 85, Pale Oak 70) making them perfect for tone-on-tone contrast.

Is pale oak darker than classic gray?

Classic Gray has a LRV of 75 While Pale Oak is 70, so Pale Oak is darker than Classic Gray!

Click here to get a peel and stick sample of Pale Oak.

Still not sure what paint color to choose?

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My Paint Color Formula ebook walks you through the painless process of expertly testing paint swatches to ensure you have the perfect color for your home.

Learn more about the Paint Color Formula here!

The best way to sample paint? Samplize!

Get peel-and-stick removable and reusable paint samples here!

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Thanks for reading!

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