How injecting colour into your home can affect your mood

Colour is something we take for granted each and every day, but it works wonders in elevating our mood and wellbeing

Colour can make us feel motivated, fill us with confidence, calm us or even spark romance. It affects our attitudes and our minds and is an important thing to consider when making your decorating choices for your home.

Here, the experts at Vanessa Arbuthnott have listed 8 of the most popular colours people choose when decorating their homes, and the fascinating science behind them.

Related: Bedroom colour schemes to brighten your home


living room with couch and flower vase

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Brittain)

Represents serenity, intelligence and protection

It has been proven that students exposed to blue before undertaking an exam were more successful and achieved greater results making it the perfect colour to paint your bedroom or office. Too much blue however can make a room feel cold and people feel unwelcome – be sure to balance this colour with warm undertones such as yellows and creams.


green walls with wooden table and chairs

(Image credit: Future PLC/Max Attenborough)

Represents nature, balance and wealth

Green is often used in bedrooms due to its natural calming nature. It is also said that green can prevent nightmares! In large doses it has been shown to make us experience feelings of envy and jealousy – the infamous green monster.


living room with floral curtains and sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Brittain/Country Homes & Interiors)

Represents energy, happiness and attention

Yellow is the best colour to create enthusiasm and can awaken greater confidence and optimism. Too much yellow can cause distress and is best avoided in bedrooms, it is known that babies can cry more in yellow rooms. It is however perfect for creating sunny kitchens and bathrooms.


orange wall with bed and lamp

(Image credit: TBC)

Represents reassurance and warmth

Orange is a social colour often used in gyms and active wear brands due to its motivational, get up and go qualities. It is however seen as a negative colour in America and is often related to prison uniforms and Halloween! It is a great colour to use in your living and dining rooms.

Related: How to add captivating colour to a dining room


living room with fireplace and round table

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Brittain)

Represents passion, optimism and adventure

Red is the colour of passion and is guaranteed to spark romance! It is also used a lot in food and drink branding across the world as it is known to stimulate appetite (think coca cola!) Works well in bedrooms and dining rooms.


bedroom with wooden flooring and flower vase

(Image credit: Future PLC/Vanessa Arbuthnott)

Represents calm, sweetness and love

A lovely colour to use in bedrooms, pink can counteract anger and violence. In fact, a study at a US state prison showed that inmates were significantly calmer when exposed to Baker Miller Pink. However, in society pink can also represent a sense of immaturity, a lack of will power and self-worth. This can be easily balanced with an injection of black and grey which work well with the lighter colour.


bedroom with lilac curtain and flower vase

(Image credit: TBC)

Represents creativity, spirituality and mystery

Lilac is proven to be the most spiritual colour, often linked with the area between earth and heaven and used a lot by spiritualists and mediums. Use it in your bathroom or bedroom for a calming space but remember to add in some other brighter tones as too much lilac can promote a feeling of depression in some.

Grey and Black

dinning table with chairs and frames

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

Represents protection, formality and strength

Although it might not be the first colour that comes to mind, black implies self-control and discipline. It also symbolises independence and a strong will and gives an impression of authority and power. However, it is worth remembering that too much black can cause depression and a negative environment so be sure to use in moderation! Grey is a very popular choice at the moment due to its versatility and works well in any room. Yellow work particularly well with grey as a contrasting bright.

Which colour will you be including in your decorating scheme?

Deputy Editor

Jennifer is the Deputy Editor (Digital) for Homes & Gardens online. Prior to her current position, she completed various short courses a KLC Design School, and wrote across sister brands Ideal Home, LivingEtc, 25 Beautiful Homes, Country Homes & Interiors, and Style at Home.