White is a very popular color choice and always has been. But there are circumstances when white might not be the perfect fit. Therefore it’s good to have some alternatives you can use to replace white in your design.
Why you want to use white
As said above, white is very popular and not only since minimal design has become a trend. The first reason to choose white is the flexibility of this non-color. White goes with every color. It’s neutral enough to let other colors take the role of prominence.
The color white is usually brought in relation to positive aspects. Being the color of calmness, simplicity, and clarity it can add its meaning to your design. White is used wherever you don’t want anything to distract from your main design elements. That’s why it’s perfect for backgrounds and to create white space around other elements. Typography is better readable. A photo can draw the attention in if put on a white background. In relation with other colors, white creates contrast. Simply put, why would anyone not want to use white?
Related post: Color meaning and symbolism
Why consider an alternative to white
There are certainly situations when white isn’t the best choice. As much as we love bright white for all the reasons above, at times, your design might need something different. White can easily be too much.
It can be too harsh when you are in need of something soft. Out of the same reason you might choose a color combination which creates less contrast. Pure white has often a very cold effect. If this causes a problem in your design you might want to consider some alternatives.
Related post: 6 colors to use instead of black
8 colors to use instead of white
The best alternatives for white are also called off-white. They are generally shades or tones of pure white. This means you add a tiny bit of black or a touch of color to white to make it more subtle, soft or warm. Try one of the following colors.
Ivory | #FFFFF0
for a light touch of yellow
Baby Blue | #F7F9FE
to add a bit of blue
Blush | #FFF0F5
if you need a soft pink
Mint Cream | #F7FEFC
if green is your thing
Smoke | #F5F5F5
a very light gray
Magnolia | #F8F5FA
to add a touch of purple
Alabaster | #F2F0E6
for a greenish yellow effect
Champagne | #F7E7CE
to add a bit of orange