We’ve talked about the use smell in your home before, how it affects the mind and body, and the way you can benefit from it. Our minds are influenced by everything around us, and why not use what we know to create a warm, cozy, fun home. Color can be used in the same way, though it works a little different than smells do.
Color psychology is the study of how colors can affect and determine human behavior and the power of color is something that everyone should use in their interior décor.
But how do you use it? Which colors evoke which emotions? We’ll walk you through the color spectrum and fill you in on these interior design secrets. Bonus: we’ll even recommend rooms where each color works best.
Some believe red to be a color of passion, and it has been proven to raise the heart rate. However, this isn’t a color you want in areas where you unwind and relax (bedroom, bathroom). It promotes energy, which is completely the opposite thing you’re going for when you wind down for the night.
The color red stimulates conversation, so you might consider using it in your dining room. Just be aware that this color can prompt you to eat more, so use with caution in areas where you wine and dine.
Vitamin C gives you energy, we all know this. But did you know the color orange can boost energy, too? Another conversation-promoting color, orange can be used in a number of rooms, and it doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
With this color, choose any shade and you’ll achieve the same effects. From pale to deep shades, this color has the potential to make any room brighter and warmer and stimulate creativity.
There’s no denying the yellow is a happy color. It’s the color of sunshine! This hue is believed to promote creativity and conversation as it stimulates the nervous system, but it can also cause you to eat more (I see what you’re up to, Mr. Fast-Food-Chain!).
Yellow is best complimented by white or black. Bringing other colors into the mix can be overwhelming. You really want this color to shine on its own, but if you do combine colors, use it as an accent color to brighten things up a tad. You can do this in a neutral or even a blue room.
Green(ery) is the 2017 Pantone Color of the Year.
Green—for many of us—means growth and freshness. This color is another that helps improve concentration and energy, and there are truly no limits as to where you can use this color.
As with orange, choose the shade depending on the room and its use. Bright green accents are great in a living room where people gather and soft greens are beautiful in a bathroom.
You can also use this color to bring the outside inside. Green is great in small rooms with a view of the backyard, as you can create an illusion by using the same shades of green that are outside to make the room feel bigger.
Blue and indigo are calming, soothing colors. They bring a feeling of peace and coolness to any room you bring them to. This color, in all its shades and tones, can really work in any room. Go with brighter tones in rooms where you want a higher level of energy and with lighter tones in rooms where you want peace and relaxation.
Blue, like green, is a clean and natural color that we associate with the sea and the sky. It’s a color that can bring memories of cloud gazing with your grandmother or vacation on a beach with your partner, so keep the feelings you associate with it in mind when decorating. It can really affect the feeling you personally have within the room.
This color promotes creativity and creates an air of luxury and power. It’s a dramatic addition to a room when you use a bright or dark shade, but a calming color when used in pastels.
No matter the shade, this color always makes a statement.
These colors—including white, beige, and brown—are best as a backdrop in any room with a pop of any color. You can use any of the colors above in a room painted a neutral color to bring about the same feelings and atmosphere the colors bring without going over the top.
Your house and the way you decorate it is an extension of you. It reflects your personality just as much as your wardrobe does. Colors affect people of different culture, genders, and ages differently, so it’s important to keep yourself and your tastes in mind when choosing color pallets for each room.
More importantly, have fun when choosing the colors for every room in your home, and don’t feel like you’re limited by standard color pairings and expectations. Try something new!
Kayleigh is a content writer with a BA in technical writing/literature and an MA in creative writing. When she’s not at work writing, she’s at home writing, reading, or binge-watching television shows… for research, of course. A big do-it-yourselfer and crafter, Kayleigh loves testing out projects and gifting them to friends and family—all in preparation for when she owns her own home one day and decorates with her own personal creations. Her work has appeared on The Writing Cooperative and as an Honorable Mention in East Meets West American Writers Review.