A first-class black paint color with enchanting warm notes; one of the truest black shades and a trendy color choice that shows status, luxury, and sophisticated style.


They say black is the new black. Indeed, the demand for black in interior and exterior design knows no borders with the comeback of the favorite dark paint colors. Especially for lovers of bold and dark, Sherwin-Williams introduced one of the best black paint colors, Black Magic, into its 2023 collection of trendy colors. 

Known in the past as 2015 October’s color of the month and 2018 April’s color of the month, SW 6991 tops the list of the most popular black shades alongside Tricorn Black SW 6258 and Caviar SW 6990, all three known as the truest black tones at SW. How does Black Magic manage to keep pace with such strong competition? Let’s find out!

Black Magic Paint Color Features

One of the most accurate black shades at SW, Black Magic, is a very dark and neutral paint color reading slightly warm. It has been part of the trendiest color palettes over the past years due to its dramatic sophistication, empowering status, formal elegance, and luxury personality. Colorists claim that a true black paint color is a dangerous tool in interior and exterior design. You can easily end up with an enclosed or devoid-of-taste effect when not used appropriately, yet nothing compares with the perfection of a balanced use of a dark color that roars royalty and drama. 

If your personality is defined by a strong character, willingness to go after what you want, and respect for such values as self-control and integrity, you should go for the trendy black paint color that will emphasize these features. There are many ways to reveal your personality to the world, and speaking through color is one of them.

Black Magic: Is It Warm or Cold?

Experts from Sherwin-Williams state that Black Magic “has a slight warmth that feels deliciously enticing.” At first glance, BM may seem a neutral dark shade. Compared to its counterpart Tricorn Black, a true neutral black, Black Magic seems warmer. If we were to compare the RGB (Red, Green, Blue) values, we would notice a value of 50 for Red at Black Magic in contrast to 47 at Tricorn Black. This slight difference has a lot to do with the temperature of those colors. 

How Does Lighting Affect Black Magic?

When reviewing paint colors, we explain what they look like in rooms with different exposures and light temperatures. We won’t do the same with Black Magic, as we didn’t do it with Tricorn Black. Such dark and true black shades are hardly affected by lighting. Although, one thing cannot go unnoticed. Small spaces with poor light conditions will create the perfect circumstances for Black Magic to make your room feel too dark and intimidating. You better opt for an accent wall, or furniture piece painted this way or avoid the paint color entirely. A different situation develops in large and well-lit spaces where you have more design options with the warm black paint color.

Black Magic LRV

Similarly to Tricorn Black, BM has a Light Reflectance Value of 3. Quick reminder: 0 for true blacks and 100 for true whites. You may wonder why 3 when both colors are true shades of black. We will reveal a secret. No paint manufacturer has developed so far a truly true shade of black or white with LRVs of 0 or 100. Nonetheless, this is the closest colorists could reach. In plain words, Black Magic simply absorbs light without bouncing the smallest amount back, and professionals suggest using it in combination with lighter colors to compensate for it. 

Black Magic Undertones

Since SW 6991, like Tricorn Black, has a clean black base, we would say there are no visible undertones. Yet, something makes Black Magic feel warmer. The thing is that Tricorn Black is close to the blue-purple family, while Black Magic shows its respect to the red-purple group of colors. The latter has more red in it and reads warmer. By the way, this is why SW 6991 feels so enchanting and alluring. Or should we say magical?

Similar Colors

Do you want more true black options? Besides its besties – Caviar and Tricorn Black from the same brand, Black Magic has other similar paint colors to share. Discover the true or almost true black shades from Sherwin-Williams, Benjamin Moore, and Behr:

  • Caviar SW 6990 by Sherwin-Williams – the closest black tone with a similarity of 99.7% to Black Magic, and although sharing the same LRV, they don’t share the red undertones;
  • Tricorn Black SW 6258 by Sherwin-Williams – with a 99% similarity to Black Magic, this true shade of black feels slightly more neutral;
  • Domino SW 6989 by Sherwin-Williams – pretty close to Black Magic, yet a bit lighter and not as neutral; a few drops of unnoticeable purple-blue seems to have been diluted with black;
  • Black 2132-10 by Benjamin Moore – a true-by-definition shade of black devoid of pretentious undertones and perfect to use as an alternative to Black Magic;
  • Jet Black 2120-10 by Benjamin Moore – a slightly lighter black than SW 6991, yet it would look almost the same in particular light conditions;
  • Black Black 8341 by Behr – a considerably lighter black that would receive a subtle gray cast when bathed in direct natural light;
  • Black Watch C60-35 by Behr is even lighter than the previous shade yet not far enough to stand out near BM.

Coordinating Colors

When in doubt which color works better with black, in our case – true black, remember that every and each color looks stylish when paired with such a dark and sophisticated shade like BM. As usual, those tones are divided into contrastive and monochromatic color schemes. Lighter grays, whites, saturated peach, gold, clay, brown, and beige with warm undertones will do.

  • Pure White SW 7005 – a classic white with a clean surface devoid of noticeable undertones, perfect for the trim;
  • Snowbound SW 7004 – a crisp yet not cold shade of timeless white that would perfectly harmonize with the black shade from SW;
  • Dovetail SW 7018 – a warm and soft mid-tone gray that pairs well with any color due to its versatile approach to color combination;
  • Dorian Gray SW 7017 – another exceptional warm shade of gray whose charming notes doesn’t allow it to fade even when paired with more intense colors;
  • Repose Gray SW 7015 – a genuinely light gray with a subtle beige trace, a perfect neutral companion for accent paint colors;
  • Homburg Gray SW 7622 – a deep and cool gray with organic green undertones that reads statement and style;
  • Lemon Meringue SW 7561 – a very light yellow with pink undertones fading into a soothing peach shade, warm and relaxing;
  • Anjou PearSW 6381 – a saturated and warm orange-gold tone as if worn-out or polished with the delicious beauty of a very ripe pear;
  • Quinoa SW 9102 – a charmingly warm and soft shade of pinkish beige, creamy, and full of body;
  • Farro SW 9103 – a very light and warm terracotta shade that would skillfully contrast the dark and cool Black Magic paint color;
  • Wheat Penny SW 7705 – a medium-to-dark vibrant shade of orange-brown with a very creamy and alluring earthy note.

Use of Black Magic in Interior

The top design choices for a true black paint color are Scandinavian, Modern, Mid-Century Modern, and Minimalism. Designers don’t recommend painting all walls black, yet an accent wall will work. White pairs with black, like Yin and Yang. Gold, in terms of color and texture, underlines the luxury side of black, while warm and lively hues smooth the stark and formal feature in Black Magic. Put your designer mark on the interior design with the top black paint color from SW.

Black and White

The timeless contrast between black and white will never be out of date. Designers apply it in family rooms, bedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms, dining rooms, and hallways. As of late, experts like to decorate white walls with thin black-painted wood panels. It looks impressively modern and with style. Generally, you can opt for an accent wall painted in Black Magic, a black bookcase, the fireplace surrounding, or ceiling wood beams in the living room and black cabinets in the kitchen or bathroom. 

Luxury Black Canvas

Although black is not the best choice to paint all walls, we’ve seen many design concepts with a dark black background, and we liked the effect. Still, you should mandatorily pair Black Magic with leather furniture, wood texture, light-colored organic textiles, and gold accents. Other dark colors are also acceptable, such as dark green upholstery for furniture. Painting all walls black will add a mysterious note of luxury to your interior, regardless of how traditional or modern the design style is. 


In the sleeping space, the black shade SW 6991 works its magic and ensures a serene environment for you to relax and enjoy your personal space. Black Magic is a first-class solution for Industrial-style apartments. It combines well with wood and concrete. Wall-black bedrooms with a minimalist layout are another contemporary approach. No less stylish are traditional bedrooms with black accent walls and cheerfully colored textiles.

Kitchen and Dining Room

Black is a classic paint color for the kitchen cabinets. White-washed walls are preferred. The dark and enchanting black shade from SW pairs perfectly with white marble, untreated wood, and silver or gold hardware. In the dining room, designers suggest Black Magic for an accent wall, a large round dining table, wood chairs, and a sizable centerpiece chandelier. If you opt for a rather minimalist design, you can safely consider the black paint color for the chairs around a similarly round dining table. 


Black Magic can be used on walls or the vanity cabinet in the bathroom. You should mandatorily add a lighter beige color or gold accents to avoid a possible dull ambiance because of the dark paint color. Play with contrast and opt for authentic expensive stone or quality alternatives since a dark black bathroom is primarily a luxury space, and this feature should draw your eye as fast as you enter the room.

Use of Black Magic for House Exterior

Black Magic is a versatile neutral paint color. It suits exteriors of different styles, from the most traditional house with natural wood trim to the most contemporary exterior with intricate architectural design. What they have in common is a trendy black paint color that shows formality and taste. SW 6991 suits both the exterior house walls and the front or garage door if paired with white. 

The Black Magic SW 6991 paint color by Sherwin-Williams is one of the high-rated dark paint colors that come back in trend repeatedly. If exclusive designs suit your taste and you wouldn’t mind a touch of scented drama and elaborate sophistication for your interior and exterior, save this paint color in your list of future design plans.

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