The mind is incredibly complex and powerful. Neuroscientists are still learning what it’s capable of and it will be ages before we know everything about it. Take color psychology, for instance. It’s the study of color and hues to determine how it affects mood and behavior. It may sound a little like pseudoscience but it’s believed to be quite real. The colors you see have the ability to calm or excite you, to the extent that they can even affect how well you sleep. The next time you plan to repaint your bedroom, you might want to reflect on the color you choose.
We attach different meanings and even emotions to colors. This can differ from person to person depending on factors like upbringing, cultural differences, and personal experience. However, despite these differences, color psychology is used extensively especially in areas like marketing and branding. In a study called Impact of Color in Marketing, researchers found that as much as 90 percent of snap judgments about products can be based solely on color. This means that marketers can influence customer purchase if they use the right colors.
When it comes to sleep, similar principles apply. Certain colors are more soothing while others keep you alert. Some are jarring and you probably wouldn’t include them in your bedroom. Scientific explanations and in-depth studies for this change in mental state and behavior owing to colors are still lacking. However, there appears to be a connection. Even the ancient Egyptians knew this. They used chromotherapy wherein exposure to certain colors of light were believed to heal people. While it’s considered a pseudoscience, it’s still practiced to this day.
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Blue is the top color of choice for better sleep. A 2013 study by Travelodge found that people with blue bedrooms get the most sleep at night at 7 hours and 52 minutes. The study examined 2,000 British homes to investigate the influence of bedroom colors against sleep quality and quantity.
Blue is often associated with calmness and relaxation. Any shade of blue is considered to be soothing although light blue is linked with tranquility the most. Give your bedroom a wash of this beautiful color and you could find yourself sleeping a lot better at night!
If you don’t like blue, yellow is the second best color for your bedroom. The same Travelodge study found that certain shades of yellow can induce a good night’s sleep. The participants who had yellow bedrooms clocked in an average of 7 hours and 40 minutes of sleep each night.
Yellow is a cheerful color that creates a feeling of comfort and coziness. If it stimulates you too much, you can opt for a paler yellow like soft butter yellow for a more muted feel.
The Travelodge study found that green is the third-best color for the bedroom. The participants who were surveyed had an average of 7 hours and 36 minutes of sleep a night, just a little under blue color.
Green reflects the natural environment and is often used to represent tranquility and good health. To get the most out of it for sleep, choose hues that are muted such as moss green instead of true green, which is a very strong color.
Silver is the fourth sleep-friendly color and those who were surveyed received an average of 7 hours and 33 minutes of sleep. It seems an odd choice of color for a bedroom but there’s a reason behind it. Metallic silver reflects moonlight and tricks the eye into believing it’s night time. It also creates a soothing ambiance that’s important for sleep.
Travelodge listed orange as the fifth favorite color of the respondents with sleepers getting 7 hours and 28 minutes of sleep on average. The warm shades of orange create a reassuring atmosphere and relax the muscles of the body, which can promote sleep. Some believe that the color can also aid indigestion.
While we don’t yet know for sure just how far-reaching the effects of color are on sleep, it doesn’t hurt to try one of these sleep-promoting ones. Be sure to practice other sleep-friendly habits too such as exercising every day, eating healthy and avoiding stimulants like coffee and alcohol late in the day.
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Good sleep can be difficult to enjoy for some so it’s important to do all you can to get it. Whether it’s by painting your bedroom in a color that invokes calm or whether it’s by practicing relaxation techniques, there’s plenty that can help you sleep well. Starting today, make a promise to yourself to do all you can to get your share of sleep!