What Paint Colors Are Relaxing? Paint often serves as the guide for a room's design and overall feel. Particularly for bedrooms or sitting rooms, you may wish to use paint to set a tranquil and relaxing canvas for the room's decor. Whatever the style and color of your furnishings, a wide range of tones--including pastels, neutrals and deeper shades--can provide a relaxing backdrop.
As evidenced by their popular use in babies' nurseries, pastel wall colors bring a soothing calm to any space. My Perfect Color.com recommends pastel shades of blues, violet, pinks and grays for an overall calming effect. Instead of opting for beige or off-white neutrals, selecting an understated blue or rose-tinted neutral will give a slightly softer look, either cool or warm. Pastel greens are popular, relaxing wall colors, borrowing from the soothing palette of nature. According to the online decorating advice resource, Apartment Therapy.com, Sherwin Williams' "Ryegrass" balances yellow and blue for an ideally calming effect. Pastel blues conjure up a relaxing expanse of sky or sea, with blue tones generally creating a refreshing and relaxing effect.
If you prefer something deeper than pastels or neutrals, opt for colors that evoke nature for the most soothing effect. Relaxing blues may include sea-greens and ceruleans, deep maritime shades and even robin's egg blue. Since the personal definition of "relaxing" may vary, consider whether you want a space where you feel alert but tranquil, or a space that will lull you to peaceful sleep. A fresh color like robin's egg blue might seem too energizing for a bedroom, while a deep blue with hints of gray, combined with furnishings in a limited color palette, including whites, creams or grays, may seem relaxing and restful.
While blues and greens are most commonly cited for their relaxing properties, warm colors may also create a restful effect in the room. Feng shui, a tradition prescribing harmonious design, generally advises warm colors in bedrooms. Terracotta, peach or rose are all cheerful and relaxing. Avoid any primary colors like fire engine red or extremely sunny yellow, as they tend to be too enervating. If using deep shades, such as a rich terracotta or a warmly enveloping rose, select simple furnishings that harmonize with the colors' calming properties. For example, very busy patterns or excessive accent colors can easily turn a red wall from soft and cozy to harshly dramatic.
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