Colors play a hugely significant role in our lives. They play a big part in what we wear and how we decorate our homes. They can dictate whether we like something or not. They affect our choices in so many ways. It’s only logical therefore that because there’s no escaping color, it can also affect our mood. And, we react consciously and subliminally to colors. Want to learn more about the significance of colors and how they affect your moods?
The effect that green has on your mood is highly dependent on the shade or tone of green. Light green, dark forest green and teal shades tend to induce feelings of calm and relaxation. This is one reason hospitals often use the color green in their decor. Emerald green feels luxurious and upscale, while foliage green feels healthy and restorative. Bright greens like chartreuse and lime green feel bold and energizing, and are good colors to use where the environment is fast-paced. Olive green might be a good color to use in a utilitarian environment since it feels more regimented.
It’s no wonder that red is the color of love, because it invokes intense feelings is people. It carries sensual overtones of sexual attraction, fear, anger, and other extreme and primal feelings. According to a study conducted in China, men found that women wearing red were more sexually appealing. Wearing red can make you feel confident and powerful. However, the color red seems to reduce the ability to think analytically, which may explain why red cars cost more to insure. It is not a soothing color; it’s one that gets the adrenaline going!
The color gray an invoke feelings that seem like they are on the opposite end of the spectrum. Gray seems devoid of interest, and therefore may make people feel detached and uninvolved. On the other hand, it is a very conservative color and can create feelings of stability and impartial decisiveness. Soft dove-gray can help you feel rested and calm, while dark gray might invite feelings of steely resolve.
White, above all, makes things feel clean and pure. It’s very calming, airy and bright, like soft white curtains floating on a light breeze. Brides traditionally wear white because it at one time represented virginity. Medical staff often wear white to project a feeling of sterility and cleanliness. On the other hand, sterility may not be desired, and if not, white can incite feelings of boredom and lack of interest.
Yellow is associated with sunshine, and sunshine is associated with happiness and optimism. Surrounding yourself with yellow will pump up the feelings of energy and renewal, inspiring you to get things done. However, it can also be exhausting after a while. Painting a room bright yellow may make you feel overpowered. Pale yellow, on the other hand, tends to invite the same optimism without the exhaustion.
There are many shades and tones that bear the name blue and each may invoke different feelings. It’s often associated with peacefulness and tranquility, but can also make you feel physically cold. People who wear darker shades of blue tend to be thought of as loyal, authoritative and strong - people wearing blue to an interview may increase their chances of getting hired. Light blues help people feel calm and quiet. Painting rooms blue, however, often make them feel cold.
Orange, similar to red, may invoke intense feelings. It’s an invigorating color, and people who are stressed or unhappy may benefit from exposure to orange. It also suggests endurance, reasonableness, and friendliness. It’s often used in advertisements or on product labels to suggest good value and trustworthiness. Companies such as Howard Johnson used to capitalize on this with their orange roofs. Orange is the color of choice when red seems too intense.
The color black carries much symbolism, and depending on the context in which it’s seen, it can invoke a wide range of emotions. Black clothing, accessories or décor often suggests power, elegance and sophistication. Both men and women often have wardrobe staples in black, such as a little black dress or a black suit, which gives the wearer feelings of confidence. However, black is also worn at funerals and can make people feel sad or despondent in these circumstances.
The feelings associated with purple depend on the shade or tone. Deep purple is luxuriant and feels indulgent, and can also represent wisdom and introspection. Lavender is more lightweight and can make you feel romantic and playful, while mauve suggests thoughts of simpler days. Purples with blue undertones feel more introverted and cool than those with reddish undertones. Purple is also associated with royalty due to the rarity and cost of producing the dye at the time. In fact, Queen Elizabeth I forbade anyone but close members of the royal family to wear purple.
Pink is all about romance, innocence and often, femininity. It is calming, playful and youthful. Bright pinks can be very theatrical and festive. Female babies are often dressed in pink, announcing to the world their innocence and their girlish cuteness. However, because it’s so calming, it can be somewhat draining when more energy is needed. Some sports teams paint the opposing team’s locker rooms pink. They may be thinking of draining the other team’s energy. However, although considered sexist by modern society, pink locker rooms may allude to the suggestion of femininity, and as an extension, delicateness.
Brown is an earthy color and makes you feel grounded and sensible. People who wear brown are seen as reliable and dependable. Different shades can evoke different feelings. Terra cotta, for example, feels warmer and more open while taupe feels more classic and practical. Browns that are chocolate or coffee-colored browns feel richer and more robust, while tan has an outdoorsy feel. Earth-brown feels grounded and earthy.
I’ve often woken up and thought to myself “it’s a red day today”, or “today I feel like wearing blue” which is one reason I’ve never decided the night before what to wear the next day. Do you think like this too? Do you have go-to colors but didn’t realize it until now that you’ve thought about it?