Colour psychology: best bedroom colours for sleep
5 min read
Last Modified 16 August 2023 First Added 28 October 2022
Tranquil navy blue, peaceful forest green and soothing shades of sandcastle yellow – they all have the power to influence our emotions, atmosphere, and sleep.
Understanding colour psychology allows you to design a space that helps you relax and unwind. A happy place. A retreat. A sleep haven. Together, let’s look at the meaning of colour and how to apply it in your own bedroom. With the right palette, you’ll be able to drift off into a peaceful slumber.
The colour of our bedrooms can make a real difference in how we feel, but why?
Colour psychology experts have found that some hues make us feel relaxed, while others make us more alert. They can be carefully selected to balance our emotions or to create different moods. In fact, temperature, sound, layout, lighting, and colours can all stimulate perceptual and emotional responses when designing a sleep environment.
Professor Anna Franklin, a leading expert in colour psychology, says “colour preference is driven by how colour is encoded by sensory mechanisms in the eye and brain”. Her recent study at the University of Sussex’s school of psychology found that dark blue is the world’s most relaxing colour.
Our 2022 sleep study revealed that 34% of people said stress is one of the main causes of a bad night’s sleep, but stress-busting colours don’t have to be boring. Let’s get creative with our bedroom palette and design a space that’s bursting with relaxation. Here are our favourite calming colours…
This sunshine tone can help lift your mood and alleviate stress. Yellow is the colour of happiness, warmth, and spring daffodils.
To bring cheerful pops of yellow to your master suite, play around with textiles such as throws, curtains and bedding. Look for muted shades of pastel yellow as vibrant tones can sometimes stimulate your senses.
Combine yellow with neutral walls to create a French country look or midnight blue for sophisticated drama. Paler yellows, which can be found in the natural shade of the Flaxby Hebden Headboard can be contrasted against darker greys and blacks. The variation in tone is daring and bold, building upon a contemporary design.
Blue, the colour of calm.
Blue is used to lower blood pressure while also slowing respiration and heart rate – it just may be the best colour for your bedroom. Deep shades of navy blue are ever so relaxing for walls, bedding, furniture, and accents. It will help you unwind after a long day and soothe your stress away into the land of nod.
Lighter shades of baby blue will evoke a fresh, airy atmosphere, working particularly well to style a modern space or coastal concept. You can also introduce moments of darker blue without committing to a full wall of colour with the Grove Velvet-Finish Ottoman Bed Frame and the bespoke matching Grove Velvet-Finish Bedside Table. Hints of blue furniture are the perfect way to introduce colour without redesigning your entire space.
Green open spaces make us feel more at ease and connected to the world. It helps shape a sense of calm in our busy lives.
Much like blue, green works well in our sleep space to create a snug atmosphere. With deep shades of forest green and seaweed to lighter shades of pistachio and sage – there’s a beautiful green palette for you to experiment with.
For a regal example, the TheraPur® Shallow Divan Base with matching headboard is a real eye-catcher adding a sense of class and sophistication to a space. The dark pine green upholstered twill will make an alluring contrast to striking white walls, or work in harmony with a feature wall behind it.
Pink combines the passion and energy of red with the purity of white to form the colour of romance, charm, and sweet playfulness.
From muted soft tones to cooler pinks, near whites to rosy tones, it can fashion a dreamlike space that oozes personality while also lulling us to sleep with tranquillity. It’s also perfectly versatile for accessorising.
For bolder pieces, the Sana Bed Frame will add a luscious pop of pink to your sleep sanctuary, combining an elegant velvety texture with a dynamic shape. For a touch of metal modernity, the matte tones of the Abbey Bed Frame help to bring light and minimalist design to your bedroom. It’s versatile and can also work with coastal and shabby chic interiors.
Browns with orange undertones give a calming, earthy feel to a room. In colour psychology, it’s considered a solid colour, much like our natural world.
Warm shades of brown can evoke a sandy, seaside feel or a rustic, homely countryside vibe. Choose natural tones such as terracotta, fire, and rust to compose a space that’s rich with comfort, aiding your slumber.
To bring a touch of brown to your bedroom, add wooden texture through furniture, subtle accents, and a feature wall. The Monet Four Poster Bed Frame has a down-to-earth feel, with its strong lines adding height and depth to your space. Paired with a strong pine wood in a dark satin finish, bring home warmth amidst stylish sharpness.