Is your living room painted the wrong colour? Frenchic reveals the ideal colour for every room

Leading paint brand looks at the science behind key colours and where best to use them

Paint colours play a huge role when it comes to decorating our homes, probably more than you'd think! Because colours have the power to trigger emotions within us, and these reactions are rooted in psychological effects, biological conditioning and cultural imprinting.

That’s why it’s so important to understand a bit about colour psychology, to choose our paint shades wisely.

Certain paint colours can be used to create a lively and energetic mood, most ideal in say a kitchen or living room. While other shades can evoke more of a serene, calming vibe perhaps better suited to bedrooms and bathrooms.

Related: Can’t sleep? Then this is the best colour to paint your bedroom

Leading chalk paint brand Frenchic has analysed the psychology behind the most popular paint colours – offering advice on which rooms are best suited to each colour.

Paint colours explained – and the ideal room for each

Green paint colours

bedroom with green colour with drawers

(Image credit: Future)

'As one of the most natural pigments, green is the easiest on the eyes. It represents balance and harmony, as well as growth and renewal. Lighter shades of green with a mix of yellow are cheerier and lighter. Darker and deeper greens represent stability, safety and wealth. Greens tend to work best in bedrooms, bathrooms, living rooms and other spaces where you want to promote comfort and peace.'

More: Bedroom colour schemes to brighten & lift your home – from serene green to bold combinations

Blue paint colours

blue colour wall with wooden flooring and drawers

(Image credit: Future PLC/Mark Scott)

'The calming light blue sky, the depths of the oceans, the sparkling lakes and streams – blue hues remind us of natural elements. This colour is often touted to have calming psychological effects and to slow down respiration and blood pressure.'

'However, a pastel blue that reminds us of the clear sky can come across as unpleasantly cold on walls and furnishings. Light blues tend to work best in a room that receives ample natural light. If that’s not possible, then balance the coolness within the blue with warm hues in furniture and fabrics. Darker blues emit feelings of knowledge, power and trust and can work well as a dominant pigment in a space. Navy blue works best in home offices to evoke an air of professionalism.'

Red paint colours

living room with wooden table and shelves

(Image credit: Simon Whitmore)

'Red is the warmest and most dynamic colour, and it can trigger emotions easily because of its boldness. While it can make you feel passionate and energised, it also has connotations of danger and anger. Red paint works best in dining rooms, living rooms and other spaces where people gather.'

Yellow paint colours

whitew kitchen with yellow wall and dining table

(Image credit: Futujre PLC/Fraser Marr)

'Yellow is simply happy. It’s been long associated with positivity, laughter and sunshine. This hue is stimulating and makes everything feel light and sunny, for a calming psychological effect. On the flip side, it can also be perceived as abrasive when used in the wrong context. While soft yellows work best to convey a cheery atmosphere, bright yellows or too much yellow can trigger caution.'

'Work to find the right shade of yellow, use it sparingly and consider combinations with other complementary colours. This hue tends to work best in kitchens, dining rooms and bathrooms.'

Black paint

bedroom with black door with wooden flooring

(Image credit: Future PLC/Brent Darby)

'Black absorbs all light on the colour spectrum and represents the absence of colour. Generally, the colour black is associated with power, elegance and mystery, but it can lend different meanings in different contexts. For example, it can trigger emotions of fear and the unknown, or it can be used to create drama and elegance.

'Black is best used in small doses to prevent a room from creating a dark and melancholy mood. Use black paint for showcasing accent pieces, highlighting other colours in the room and to give depth to your colour scheme.'

First taste of colour: Hallway colour schemes – the combinations that make an ideal first impression

Frenchic Paint is available from £6.95 online and stockists nationwide.


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.