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The Home Depot

The Psychology Of Room Colors

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Painting > The Psychology Of Room Colors
The Psychology Of Room Colors

As you peruse the color palette to choose the perfect colors for the rooms in your home, should you choose the colors you like the best – or is there more to the process? The human mind perceives and reacts to color with more than just a preference. In fact, color evokes powerful emotions and sensations that may be beyond the ability to control.


The Utah Valley University provides interesting information about the power of color on the human psyche. One example of the way humans perceive and react to colors is the words often chosen to describe them – “warm” for red and “cool” for blue, for instance.


Take a quick peek into the psychology of room colors before you buy your paint to make sure you create the feelings you want in your interior rooms.

  1. 1.Overview of Colors

    Overview of Colors

    The color wheel suddenly has a deeper impact when you consider how color affects mood, emotions and overall feelings of wellbeing. Without even being aware or understanding the effect, colors can bring you up or calm you down. These effects may impact not only you, but your family and friends as well.


    When you have a focus on emotional health and wellbeing, using colors can help make this happen. Take the time to determine how you use a room and the feelings you want people to have when they’re using a room. For example, most people use bedrooms for resting, relaxing and sleeping. With this in mind, it would be advantageous to apply restful and relaxing colors to bedroom walls. Conversely, in a home office, you may want to feel energized and productive. With this goal, energizing colors would be appropriate for home office walls.

  2. 2.Bedroom Colors

    Bedroom Colors

    When relaxing and kicking back is the goal of your bedroom, focus on cool and relaxing colors that bring about a calming effect. Greens, turquoises and blues help calm the psyche and center your emotions. Although blue has been cast as a masculine color, it appeals to both genders. Darker hues produce greater effects and lighter hues have a lesser effect. Try a combination of all three for a beneficial color scheme that should help you relax.


    Don’t overlook using purple on bedroom walls, too. Although traditionally royal and regal, purple also promotes spirituality when used on walls. With a wide range of density, the darkest purples can have a strong impact while lavenders can be exceedingly neutral and pleasing to the eye.

  3. 3.Kitchen Colors

    Kitchen Colors

    If you’ve ever paid attention to the color scheme in restaurants, you may have noticed that red is a predominant color. The reason is simple – red can have a powerful effect on the appetite and restaurant designers know this. In addition, red may even increase respiration rate and blood pressure. If you want to avoid overeating in your own kitchen, you might avoid using red on kitchen walls. Instead, try yellow in the kitchen because it’s just warm enough to evoke comfortable feelings without stimulating the appetite. On the other hand, if you want to suppress your appetite, blue may be a suitable kitchen color because it can have this effect on some people.

  5. 4.Dining Room Colors

    Dining Room Colors

    A formal dining room begs for a bold color statement that will energize and excite diners. Reds and oranges can be ideal on dining room walls because they will enliven and stimulate people. In addition, orange often feels welcoming to people and they may feel more comfortable and relaxed within orange walls and accents. Conversation may seem to flow better and people may even enjoy your food more in a red and orange dining room.

  6. 5.Bathroom Colors

    Bathroom Colors

    Traditionally, white has been a popular bathroom color because it has a clean feel and appearance. White certainly works for bathrooms, but you might want to look deeper into the color palette if you use your bathroom in other ways. For example, if your bathroom has spa features such as a Jacuzzi or sauna, calming and relaxing colors might be appropriate. Consider blues and greens – or a combination of both – in the bathroom to produce both a calm and clean effect.

  7. 6.Living Area Colors

    Living Area Colors

    Think warmth and comfort when you’re choosing the colors for your living area walls. Earth tones such as brown and honey, as well as warm tones such as red, orange and yellow, can create a comfortable and warm feeling in a living room, family room or den. In addition, these warm tones may even help stimulate conversation and connection between the people sitting in the room. Earth tones also create feelings of security and reassurance when used on walls.

  8. 7.Home Office Colors

    Home Office Colors

    As you sit working in a home office, you’re probably hoping to finish your work as quickly as possible so you can spend more time with family and friends. With this goal in mind, colors that incite energy and productivity will be beneficial in a home office. Gray may increase creativity, so using gray on the walls of a home office may be beneficial. Gray often finds its way onto the walls of executive suites because of its neutrality and ability to complement many different colors.


    Green colors have a healing effect and they also help people focus and concentrate more on the tasks at hand, so consider a shade of green in the home office. As you consider various shades of green, neutral hues such as sage and olive can work well without seeming overpowering. Darker greens such as lime or chartreuse may be so bold that you dislike them after a short time.


    Once you realize the power of color, you can use color effectively to promote feelings of wellbeing in your home. Your choice in paint can soothe the savage beast, incite stimulating conversation or motivate creative ideas. Your family may not even realize how the walls affect their moods and emotions, but you can watch and feel satisfied that your color choices were correct.

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