Bedrooms are the most personal room in the home, and it can often be tempting to paint the room your favorite color. Studies have suggested, however, that certain colors should be kept away from the bedroom, with neutral schemes and earthy green tones preferred for their calming emotional effects.
When it comes to bedroom color ideas, if your favorite color is a bright or bold tone, it might be better to use this elsewhere in your home, argue paint experts, while sleep experts have strong opinions on what to choose if you want to sleep better.
‘The bedroom should be a relaxing oasis, and the colors you incorporate into the scheme will play a huge part in this,’ explains Helen Shaw, UK director at Benjamin Moore (opens in new tab). ‘Before you decide on a color, consider these basic facts: warm colors add energy; cool hues create a more calming atmosphere; saturated color will create a cozy environment; while pale shades conjure an airy feel.’
Although there are many colors you should never paint a bedroom, we have spoken to paint experts to find out which color is best for a bedroom for a great night's sleep.
Which color is best for a bedroom?
Earthy green tones
Decorating with green is popular throughout the home but experts suggest that this color could be ideal for a relaxing bedroom sanctuary.
‘The bedroom is a place for serenity and calm,’ explains the creative director of Little Greene (opens in new tab), Ruth Mottershead, ‘green tones such as 'Aquamarine' and 'Ambleside' are gentle and calming as they evoke our natural surroundings.’
Helen concurs, ‘the choice of color will depend largely on your own preferences, but green for example – which is currently a popular choice – will help connect your room to nature, and be both calming and energizing.’
When thinking about green bedroom ideas, you may wish to incorporate green in ways besides paint. If a full green bedroom is not for you, consider using the shade as a subtle complimentary shade in green artwork or decor, soft furnishings, or even through plants.
‘The finish is important too;’ explains Ruth, ‘the beautifully flat, matt finish of our Absolute Matt Emulsion provides an elegant look and is the perfect choice for a bedroom or any area of low traffic. It is available in all shades in the Little Greene color palette and appears especially rich and sumptuous in darker shades, such as ‘Obsidian Green’, as its flat matt finish affords a real depth to the color due to the subtle texture of its chalky surface.'
When planning your green room ideas, picking the right shade can make all the difference. Studies have suggested that yellow–greens could invoke stress due to their negative connotations, whereas a dark bedroom idea grounded in dark forest greens could provide a cocooning environment and could be a great consideration for luxury bedroom ideas.
Pair green with neutral schemes
Because decorating with one color can overwhelm a room, pairing green with neutral shades can help to balance the space while maintaining the calming allure.
'Bedrooms are the best rooms in the house for you to follow your heart and create a truly personal space. Comforting natural tones are perfect for bringing warmth to bedrooms and can be used in an all-over scheme to create a cocooning feel,’ offers Ruth. ‘Colors like Portland Stone and Rolling Fog can be paired with cleaner whites for a sophisticated contrast or provide a backdrop to bold color highlights.’
When decorating with neutrals, beige is a more soothing alternative to a stark white and balances well with other colors. It can also create a distraction-free space, making it easier for you to fall asleep. Green is also one of many great accent colors for beige, so adding this earth shade to your neutral bedroom ideas acts as a calming yet visually interesting pop of color.
You may also want to pair green with other earthy shades, Ruth adds. ‘Consider pairing with a deeper warm red such as ‘Nether Red’ to create impact with a sophisticated and nurturing feel.’
What is the most relaxing color?
One of the most relaxing colors aside from green is blue. Sitting beside one another on the color wheel, these analogous colors produce a calming effect when paired with one another, rather than produce a bold statement. Studies have shown that blue and green shades can have a calming effect on stress, lower blood pressure and even reduce anxiety. When used in softer shades, these refreshing colors can have a positive effect on both your physical health and mental wellbeing.
Chiana is a junior writer for Homes & Gardens having joined Future plc as a new graduate in 2022 after achieving a 1st class degree in Literature at university. She first became interested in design as a child after spending her summers helping her parents redecorate her childhood home. As a long-time reader of Future’s homes titles, Chiana is constantly finding new inspiration at work as she focuses on emerging trends, how-to’s, and news pieces.
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