Paint Color Review: Sherwin-Williams Iron Ore 7069

Sherwin-Williams Iron Ore 7069 is a soft, warm black that is definitely on-trend right now for everything from accent walls, cabinets, and exteriors. Wondering if it’s right for your project?

Does Iron Ore Have a Color or “Undertone?”

When most people ask about “undertones” what they’re actually referring to is a color’s hue family. Hue family describes a color’s location on a specific segment of the color wheel (red, yellow, blue, etc.). Hue family is not subjective or based on opinion; it can be objectively and scientifically calculated. A color’s hue family is determined by the measurement of that color’s dominant hue angle using color measurement tools, like colorimeters and photospectrometers.

Iron Ore has a hue angle of 131.887° which puts it in the Green-Yellow hue family. All colors, even those that seem neutral, belong to a hue family.

Determining a paint color’s hue family helps us better understand and predict how that color will render on the wall and interact with nearby colors. This is why Iron Ore may flash slightly green when used on exteriors where there’s tons of light. This oh-so-subtle green can also show up just a bit on interior walls that get direct hits of bright sunlight or when used on cabinets or trim painted with a more reflective sheen. But in most cases, people just see a nice soft black paint color.

You must sample this color in the space you intend to use it before you start putting it on your walls and trim! (We mail 8″ x 10″ paint swatches of our recommendations to our Virtual Color Consultation clients.)

Hue family is not always obvious, especially when it comes to neutrals colors. In our Virtual Color Consultation Reports, we use spectral data, like hue angle and chroma, to give you an objective, scientific read on color. No random, subjective guessing about “undertones!”

What is the LRV of Iron Ore?

Light Reflectance Value (LRV) is a measure of how much light a paint reflects back into a room, with 100 being highly reflective and zero being not reflective at all. Iron Ore’s LRV is 6, so it’s super dark (but not the darkest on the market, if you can believe it). This helps it feel a bit softer than a true black (which would be an LRV of 0 and isn’t really available when it comes to architectural paint anyway). If you’re looking for a color that’s a bit “blacker” or darker in value, take a look at Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black 6258 (LRV 3).


Which White Trim Color Goes with Iron Ore?

You’re pretty safe with most white paint colors since they’re such a stark contrast in value (lightness/darkness) to Iron Ore. Bear in mind, however, that whites from the Yellow hue family may emphasize Iron Ore’s green a bit more. I like Sherwin-Williams Pure White 7005 for a soft, clean trim color. For a bit more crispness, try Sherwin-Williams Extra White 7006.

In my online course, Color By The Numbers™, I teach you how easy it is to find hue, chroma, and other spectral data and how to use it to evaluate colors.


What Other Paint Colors Go Well With Iron Ore?

Iron Ore looks great when paired with other colors from similar hue families (the Yellow-Green, Yellow, and Green hue families). Many popular near neutrals and earth tones fall into these categories! Don’t pair Iron Ore with colors from the Blue hue family. This includes cool, blue-toned grays and other tricky near-neutrals in the Blue family.

What Other Paint Colors are Similar to Sherwin-Williams Iron Ore?

Sherwin-Williams Rock Bottom 7062 is very close in terms of value and chroma but leans a tiny bit more green (hue angle = 157°). Benjamin Moore Nightfall 1596 is similar but has even less warmth compared to Iron Ore (hue angle = 189°, Green hue family). Behr’s Peppery MQ2-62 is also comparable but looks a bit warmer than Iron Ore (hue angle = 84°, Yellow hue family)

I never, ever recommend color matching between brands. I have seen clients do this for any number of reasons (to save a little money, their contractor will only work with a specific brand, lack of access, etc.). But the bottom line is that you cannot color match between brands and expect to get identical results.

You may get really close. You may even get a color you can live with if you’re lucky. But with color matching, there are no guarantees because different brands use different formulas, bases, and proprietary pigments. Ultimately, it will be a different product.

Need Help Choosing a Color?

Need help finding the right paint color? Order a Virtual Color Consultation Report from the color professionals at Three Bears Home Staging to get a custom, curated palette and guidance for your next painting project.

one room paint color report

One Room Paint Color Report | Virtual

Need help choosing the best paint colors for your room? Then this is the (virtual) service for you! Based on your questionnaire responses and uploaded photos, we’ll create a personalized digital Paint Color Report just for you. We’ll also send you paint swatches! Click below to learn how it works or to get started!


exterior paint color

Exterior Paint Color Report | Virtual

Ready to give your home exterior a fresh new look, but feeling overwhelmed with the decision? Get a little virtual help from the color experts at Three Bears Home Staging! Based on your questionnaire responses and uploaded photos, we’ll create a personalized digital Paint Color Report just for your home’s exterior. We’ll also send you paint swatches! Read below to learn how it works…


About Vannessa Rhoades
About Vannessa Rhoades

Vannessa Rhoades is the author of Just Right! Easy DIY Home Staging: Second Edition and founder of Three Bears Home Staging®. She is an HSR Certified Professional Home Stager™ and Certified Expert E-Designer™ and has staged and consulted on hundreds of properties in person throughout the Houston metro area and virtually across the country.


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