Psychology is becoming a very popular major at universities around the U.S. It’s an interesting subject involving the single most complicated known object in the universe: the brain. Colors are not only essential to our daily lives, but they also evoke emotion and associate moods.

Color psychology is prominent in advertising and media design, for obvious reasons – they make you want to buy their product! To get a sense of the colors and what they represent, here’s a rundown of the rainbow:

Red is a bright, warm color that evokes passion and strong emotions. Red is associated with love, warmth, and comfort. It’s also considered an intense, or even angry, color that creates feelings of excitement and sometimes danger. Bright red should be used sparingly and as a highlight, or for furniture color. Dark red tones produce a nice, romantic glow.

Orange brings out excitement and intense wants & likes / disgusts & dislikes. It’s considered an energetic color and brings out feelings of enthusiasm. Orange should also be used sparingly, because of its brightness & flashiness. It goes well as accents on furniture or on accessories. Dark orange becomes akin to brown, which we all know and love.

Yellow is the brightest of them all and is often described as cheery and warm. Because of its intensity, however, it can become fatiguing to the eyes due to the amount of light that gets reflected off of it. A pale yellow can be the best way to go. Some psychologists say that the color yellow can also create feelings of frustration and anger – babies tend to cry more and people are more likely to lose their tempers. Yellow is a good attention grabber, as it’s the most visible color. Use it in small amounts to help draw attention to certain aspects of your home.

Green is said to be the most calming color. Large patches of green, such as green carpets or walls, can make a relaxing room. In film, they have actors wait in a green room before stage as the color is supposed to calm them down. It symbolizes nature and represents tranquility, good luck, health, and jealousy. Psychologists have also found that green can improve reading ability.

Blue is also calming, but also represents loyalty in color psychology. Pale blue is caring and welcoming – it’s a wonderful, versatile color. And darker blue is also useful for many different areas in the interior, including both highlights and main areas. In general, the color blue can bring out feelings of peacefulness, security, but some have said that it creates feelings of sadness or confusion. Some say that the color helps lower body temperature and pulse rate. In fact, workplace offices are often painted blue because research has shown that people are more productive in blue rooms.

Purple signifies wealth, power, royalty, fame, wisdom, and spirituality. A purple carpet in a bedroom gives a nice romantic feel, as well as a powerful aura. Although bright purple walls can be distracting and intense, a nice pale purple can be perfect. Because purple does not often occur in nature, it can sometimes appear exotic and can be a good choice for children who want something “different.”

Brown is one of the most versatile colors. It’s earthly and natural and can evoke a sense of strength, reliability, comfort, and security. It’s great for walls, floors, ceilings, furniture, highlights, and decorations. While it may seem conventional, it can also bring a sense of sophistication to your home.

Black is used for authority and power. It absorbs all light and can sometimes create a slimming image when worn as clothing. Black inside the house should generally be applied sparingly. Although not always signifying authority, black is a strong and deep color and can darken a cheery room. In many cultures, black is associated with death, mourning, evil, unhappiness, sexuality, and treachery. Though, in ancient Egypt, the color black represented life and rebirth.

White is the color of purity and innocence. It adds a sense of space and can highlight your home. It goes great in bathrooms, keeping the area looking clean & tidy. White works well as a base and goes well in conjunction with most any color. However, white is also described as cold, bland, and sterile. Rooms painted completely white can seem spacious, but empty and unfriendly.

paint chips

Color psychology in your home’s interior is not always the first thing you consider when decorating. But it’s important to recognize how colors can influence emotions and affect how each room “feels.” When choosing colors for each room, consider the room’s purpose and choose accordingly. Knowing ahead of time which colors evoke certain senses, you can efficiently apply them and add an extra flair to your home.