The Psychology behind Choosing Paint Colors for Your Custom Home
Trying to decide on paint colors for your new custom home? Don’t overlook the psychological impact of color. Studies have shown that different hues create different moods, and can even affect behavior, says Debbie Zimmer, paint and color expert at the Paint Quality Institute.
“There are lots of good reasons to select a particular paint color, including personal preferences and design considerations, but often overlooked is the psychological power certain colors exert on mood, attitude, and outlook,” says Zimmer.
“Even before you go to the paint store or start to look at color cards, think about the mood you’d like in your surroundings,” continues Zimmer. “Do you want the space to be relaxing or invigorating? Once you make that decision, the color choice becomes easier.”
If your goal is to create a tranquil space, then look for a soft green or pale blue. These are the most calming colors, so they’re ideal for rooms where you rest and relax, such as the family room or bedroom.
Other go-to colors for rooms where you rest include certain beiges, browns, and taupe. More enveloping than blues and greens, these quiet tints and shades impart warmth and coziness to a space.
At the other end of the psychological spectrum are paint colors that can inject energy into your surroundings. Yellow is the best example. Like a splash of sunshine, yellow walls can lift the spirit and brighten your outlook. What better color to use in a kitchen or breakfast area where you start the day?
Shades of orange—tangerine and apricot, for example—are also energizing, so they too are good choices for rooms where you spend your mornings.
Reds are energizing, too, but they need to be used sparingly, since their bold appearance can literally increase heartbeat. But if you’re seeking a great dining room color, look no further: studies show red can actually increase appetite, which is why it is used in so many restaurants.
Aside from the color of the paint you choose, keep in mind that tone also plays a role in setting the mood. Brighter tones invigorate, while those that are muted (“toned down”) tend to be more relaxing.
After choosing the perfect color, make sure it continues to look just so by applying the highest quality paint. Products that are 100 percent acrylic resist fading, so the color you apply is the color you’ll continue to enjoy for years to come, says Zimmer.
Source: Paint Quality Institute
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