Sleep experts reveal 5 colours to avoid when buying bedroom furniture

If you're after a restful night's sleep, there are a couple of hues you might want to steer clear of

White bedroom with exposed brick wall, sheer curtains and rattan mirror
(Image credit: Future PLC/James Merrell)

Sleep experts reveal the colours you should avoid buying bedroom furniture in if you're trying to promote a calmer environment and improve your sleep.

We've long known that there are certain bedroom trends that not only work in an interiors and styling aspect but also when it comes to the matter of helping you sleep better.

Choosing a bedroom colour scheme is something that should be thought through thoroughly because the choices you make can potentially act as a factor impacting your sleep, so what colours should you opt for to ensure a restful night?

White bedroom with exposed brick wall, sheer curtains and rattan mirror

(Image credit: Future PLC/James French)

5 colours to avoid when buying bedroom furniture

'When it comes to creating a peaceful sleep environment, the colours you choose for your bedroom furniture and decor can have a significant impact on your overall sleep quality,' says Hayley Thistleton, bedding and sleep expert at Sleepseeker.

'While personal preferences may vary, there are certain colours that are generally recommended to promote a calming and restful atmosphere in the bedroom.'

Bed inside bedroom with pinstripe feature wall and art prints

(Image credit: Future PLC)

1. Bright or vibrant colours

'Avoid furniture and decor in vibrant hues such as bright red, neon green, or electric blue. These colours are stimulating and can create an energetic or agitated ambience, which may hinder your ability to relax and fall asleep,' explains Hayley Thistleton at Sleepseeker.

Elaborating further on the colour red, Martin Seeley, sleep expert and CEO at MattressNextDay adds, 'While red is the colour of love and, therefore, seems like a good shade to have in the bedroom, it’s too overpowering for bedroom furniture.'

White painted bedroom with red headboard and furniture

(Image credit: Future PLC/Carolyn Barber)

'Studies have shown that the colour red has such a powerful pigment that it can even provoke aggression or anger, which is the opposite of what you want when falling asleep. Instead, you want feelings of tranquillity and for your heart rate to be slowing down.'

If you want to explore that feeling of love and passion that red invokes, Devin Shaffer, lead interior designer at Decorilla suggests exploring with the red colour family, 'working with muted pinks, coral, and magenta.'

2. Grey

This one might come as a surprise to many, considering that grey feels like such a safe staple for many. However, Martin Seeley at MattressNextDay says, 'While Mrs Hinch may have made grey the go-to colour for many modern-day homes, unfortunately, this is one of the worst colours to pick for bedroom furniture.'

'Grey is a suppressive colour and lacks warmth, which can have a depressive effect on the brain due it its dreariness. It’s also a colour that is associated with rainy days, making it the worst colour for those that suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD).'

Dark grey bedroom with double bed with leather headboard and bench

(Image credit: Future PLC/Davide Lovatti)

3. Yellow

'Yellow, especially a lively, sunshine yellow, is too much of stimulating colour to be considered for decorating your bedroom. In small doses and light pops of colour, it can work but should be avoided in large quantities,' warns Martin Seeley at MattressNextDay.

'While it’s perfect for a cheerful wake-up, colour psychology has shown that this shade can put you on a state of high alert, meaning you’ll struggle to get to sleep beyond turning the light off. This is because it’s not only an attention-grabbing colour but because it evokes feelings of excitement and energy.'

Yellow bedroom with rattan bedroom and pink details

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

However, don't let that get in the way of exploring with colour. Devin Shaffer at Decorilla says, 'I'm always amazed by the way yellow can work as an accent in a bedroom – as it's oftentimes only associated with daylight and energy. But by having a few yellow pillows versus a bright yellow bed frame, the colour is able to playfully blend with the neutral colours in the room.'

4. Overuse of dark shades

'While dark colours like charcoal grey or deep navy can create a cosy atmosphere, using them excessively in your bedroom can make the space feel gloomy and oppressive. Dark furniture and decor should be balanced with lighter colours to maintain a sense of tranquillity,' says Hayley Thistleton at Sleepseeker.

Dark grey bedroom

(Image credit: Future PLC / Dominic Blackmore)

5. Bold patterns

While this one isn't directly a colour, the intention remains all the same. Sleepseeker's Hayley Thistleton says, 'While patterns can add visual interest to a room, it's best to avoid bold and busy patterns in your bedroom furniture and decor. Intricate designs or large, contrasting patterns can be visually stimulating and may disrupt the calmness needed for a good night's sleep.'

White painted bedroom and window with white bedframe and decorative cushions, bedside table with flowers

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dan Duchars)

As always, take these with a pinch of salt and ultimately, stick to whatever colour scheme works for you and your tastes. If you want to keep things neutral and stick to a grey bedroom idea, then go for a grey bedroom. Similarly, if you want a bold bedroom, then go for that and go experiment with bright colours and patterns.

At the end of the day, advice without seeing what you're already working with in your current bedroom design can only go so far. Only you'll know what fits best for your bedroom in relation to your overall living space.

Jullia Joson
Junior Writer

Jullia Joson is a Junior Writer at Ideal Home. She's always loved all things homes and interiors, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Nottingham where her love for journalism blossomed following her internship at ArchDaily. Now focused on home tech, Jullia works on writing features and explainers to help people make the most of their home appliance investments. When she isn't writing, she loves exploring the city, coffee shop hopping, and losing hours to a cosy game.