Backdrop Paint brings us an insanely convenient online model to buy paint in 65 curated colors and supplies delivered right to your door. FREE shipping is a bonus.
They offer a range of options including interior, Exterior and Cabinet paint all available in their Standard Finish and Semi-Gloss.
In my opinion, what they call their standard finish is similar to matte in other brands. Semi-gloss is just what you’d expect a semi to look and feel like.
As far as curated palettes go, it’s a meandering spectrum of very lovely and livable colors. Each one has a pitch of nuance that makes it uniquely Backdrop. Keep this in mind as you scroll through the chart of Backdrop paint color dupes at the end of this post.
I feel I’m qualified to make that analysis since I’ve curated over 10,000 paint colors in The Paint Color DNA Table. I literally analyze paint colors for a living.
Backdrop Paint was acquired in May 2021 by F. Schumacher & Co., the parent company of the heritage fabric brand. F. Schumacher.
CEO Timur Yumusaklar told Business of Home, “The mission and ambition of FSCO is about the feeling of home. Paint is one of the highest impact products for that—there’s a huge difference between having ‘landlord white’ and a nice, warm off-white. We want to play in areas that have a strong emotional impact.”
Backdrop isn’t the only brand to offer this type of online paint buying model.
The problem – or in marketing speak, the barrier – stopping many consumers from pushing that submit order button is they’re afraid of choosing the wrong color.
Why Do Paint Colors Online Look Wrong?
At this point, there is mass awareness that color online is not the same as color in real life.
As a color expert with more than 25 years working in graphic design, print, publishing, and architectural color, I can assure you that there is no way to make online color look – and feel – the same as color in real life.
What you need to know is the computer parts inside your device determines how to display color for you. And each device does that differently: your phone, your tablet, your laptop, your computer at work, all display color differently.
In color jargon terms it’s called device dependent color – because how color shows up on your device depends on the color rendering capability of the device itself.
Those that have been there done that – and got burned – when they trusted pictures of paint colors online, will instead search Google for “Backdrop paint color reviews” and hope something useful comes up.
But, there is a better way to predict how a paint color could actually show up in your house.
How to Order Paint Colors Online
The Paint Color DNA Table is the solution to help you make paint color decisions confidently whether you’re ordering online or in person.
Because The Color DNA Table is where you will find factual descriptions of what paint colors look like under a standard D65 light source to human eyeballs with normal color vision.
The D65 illuminant strives to mimic indirect daylight around noon. It’s comparable to interior spaces with abundant to moderate quality/quantities of natural light.
I have a one-minute video tutorial for you on the table page but here’s a brief summary of how the notations describe paint colors:
Hue Angle and Family – defines the parent hue the color belongs to. Not the same as “undertones”.
You need to know that when it comes to categorizing color by undertones that people are making it up as they go. What a controversial thing to say, right? But…. prove me wrong.
All they’re doing is telling you what they think a color looks like under whatever random light source and context they have – has nothing to do with any kind of standard viewing conditions, or your lighting, or your space.
If you’ve ever wondered why the color reviews you find online all say something different about a color’s undertone, this is why.
Value – how light or dark a color looks
Chroma – how strong/clean or weak/dirty a color is
LRV – brightness, how much light a color reflects.
Why Do I Need a Hue, Value, Chroma, LRV Color Notation
Think of hue, value, chroma and LRV as shorthand for communicating the most important attributes of a color’s appearance.
Imagine shopping for shoes or clothes from a store that doesn’t use tags or signs of any kind – no sizes, no prices. You’re just supposed to guess what’s gonna fit and you’ll find out when it’s time to pay if it’s the right price or not.
That’s an insane scenario. You’re thinking, “Ridiculous, I would never shop there!”
Yet we put up with something similar. This is essentially what paint brands are doing; you have to eyeball color chips and samples and then make your best guess.
If you have a color notation, like the example below, which is an at-a-glance shorthand description, you don’t have to guess about color attributes. Simply read the notation and know what to expect.
Now, imagine what this feels like. You no longer have to:
- slog through an 8-minute color review video on YouTube
- read a 2,500+ word affiliate links mine-field masquerading as a paint color review
- try to decipher abstract paint color blurbs from the paint brand
- shuffle paint chips hoping the idea of “undertone” jumps out
… all in an effort just to get your head around the essence of a paint color.
You absolutely do not have to struggle through any of that because we have the shorthand descriptions for more than 10,000 paint colors. Including all 65 from Backdrop.
You can search, sort, save and compare paint colors in all sorts of ways in the Table – I encourage you to head over there when you’re done here and spend some time experimenting.
BEWARE! The Paint Color DNA Table is addictive because there are SO MANY ways to organize and order paint colors.
Backdrop Paint Dupes
I want to be clear that I recommend buying your color in its home brand.
But I also understand that’s not always possible for everyone for different reasons; which is why I have done the work for you and found dupes for Backdrop colors in the chart at the end of this post.
Let’s clarify that a paint color dupe is different from a match. With paint dupes, what we’re doing is looking for existing stock colors in other brands that are as similar as possible.
The dupes might be great, just okay, or barely-marginally in the same ballpark as the inspo color.
A paint match is when a pro takes a sample and uses all of their color magicianing to match it using that brand’s product. This may or may not work out so well due to the fact that brands have their own proprietary paint bases and colorant systems.
With that sorted out — I found dupes – not matches – dupes for you.
At the bottom of this post is a mini Color DNA Table with the best Backdrop paint color dupes I could find in major brands: Benjamin Moore, Magnolia Home, PPG Paints and Sherwin-Williams.
With a little practice using the filters in the Table, you too can find dupes for any paint color by comparing hue, value, chroma and LRV. Then choose colors that are similar in whatever brand you want. I have a couple examples in the next section.
However, again, dupes aren’t the greatest solution unless close enough is good enough for you.
Because every paint brand has their own recipes for bases and colorants. In order to get the best and authentic version of a paint color, your best bet is to buy it in its home brand.
Is Backdrop Paint Worth It?
Here’s a dupe example. The closest Backdrop paint dupe for their Road to Todos Santos is Sherwin-Williams SW 6185 Escape Gray.
Since we all know that color doesn’t render accurately online, here are the color data profiles from the Color DNA Table so you can compare and see exactly where and how they differ.
Are they similar?
Not just similar. They’re so close you could call it a match, not a dupe.
This next example is a super-hot trend color right now. It’s a Backdrop paint dupe for 36 Hours in Marrakesh. I’m not usually a fan of terra cotta but I have to say I’m slightly obsessed with 36 Hours in Marrakesh – it’s stunning.
The closest stock color you’re gonna find in any major paint brand is Benjamin Moore’s 1200 Mesa Peach. It’s pretty and it is VERY close to 36 Hours but it has a smidge more Value and Chroma so it’s not as soft and muted.
In a word nuance. The nuance between the original colors and dupe colors is not always guaranteed to be the same.
If you’re looking to add to your color term glossary, here’s the definition of nuance: Nuance is when we consider a color’s lightness/brightness (Value/LRV) and colorfulness (Chroma) at the same time.
You could go down the rabbit hole of taking a sample to a paint store and trying for a custom match but honestly, I think the easiest and cheapest way to get your color is to buy the original in its home brand of paint.
Because why complicate things when the whole point of buying paint online from brands like Backdrop is ease and convenience?
If you’ve ordered paint online before, let us all know what you thought of the experience in the comments below.
Watch this short video for tips on how to use this mini dupes table. Enjoy scrolling through the colors; it’s kinda fun to compare how the colors are the same but different.