I’m red with anger!

In 12th grade honors english class, each term had a different topic, and every Tuesday and Thursday rotated through each student. Who ever was up that day had 2 minutes to talk about that topic in whatever way could get them through those 2 hellish minutes. The second round of questions required each student to write a question, as random and ridiculous as possible. After I fought my way through a horrible 2 minutes, my good friend was up and ready…or so she thought…

“Why do you hate the color yellow?”

“……… yellow reminds me of sickness and makes me want to puke.” she responded.

As I reminisced on my last year in high school, my mind came across this entire weird term, as the questions only got more random from there, and decided that although very random, I would look into the effects that colors have on our thinking, moods, and attitudes.

Colour mood chart

Looking into how room color changes mood, how colors effect feelings and how colors effect behavior I have found that this subject although not wildly popular, is actually something people do look into and use regularly.

According to Mihai, room color to begin with can actually give a look into your personality. Although color effects may vary between age, sex, and ethnic background, colors usually spark a pattern in feelings and emotions in different parts of a house. The colors on your walls have three options: they can either be passive, active or neutral. On a more basic level, light colors open a room making it airy and calm, where as dark colors are more sophisticated in a space and create a more intimate feeling.

More specifically colors should be chosen carefully as the following effects have kept a pattern that’s hard to ignore:

Red: a very intense and loud color, red brings up energy in the room and creates a sense of togetherness that easily sparks conversation.

Yellow: yellow is a strong symbol of happiness and is best placed in a kitchen or bathroom where it is welcoming, and in smaller spaces yellow creates a larger more excited feeling.

Blue: blue is perfect and relaxing for bedrooms and bathrooms especially. Light blues are the best for calming where dark blues tend to evoke sadness.

Green: being the most restful color to the eye, green is suited for just about anywhere and allows for a sense of togetherness.

Orange: very energetic and enthusiastic, great for exercise spaces.

Purple: in light shades purple has a similar effect as light blue, whereas in dark shades, purple is the symbol of luxury and sophistication. (2015).

As Mihai points out, some other important color schemes to consider include a green desktop wallpaper to increase productivity and an orange workout room to bring about the passion of red and the joy of yellow. When going on a date, women are encouraged to wear red to display passion, and men are encouraged to wear blue as it is seen as stable and can calm the nerves of both. Black is seen as an aggressive color and especially is seen with sports teams who tend to show more pent up aggression when wearing their black away jerseys. Last and certainly not least, grey should be avoided when getting dressed to head to work and a green and blue workspace should be looked at as desirable.

In a recent study, Gruson (1982) writes of a large group of juvenile detention centers that began placing those who were manic and rowdy in rooms with walls of bubble gum pink. Rather than the long used restraining they once did, the “passive pink” room helped calm the children and eventually put most to sleep. Colors can be used in restaurants as red increases appetites and ultraviolet rays are used in dentist offices to help reduce cavities. Blue has had a huge impact as it was said to have influenced chinchillas to breed more female offspring than males and has even been the color painted on London’s Blackfriars Bridge in order to decrease the number of people who attempt suicide off of it.

Truly amazing, although not 100% guaranteed, colors have the ability to influence simple parts of everyday whether we allow them to or not. Here is an even more specific breakdown of each color and the feelings each one evokes!

3 thoughts on “I’m red with anger!

  1. Rebecca Aronow

    I’ve always found colors and their effect on people to be so interesting. I always ask people what their favorite color is because I think it can give you a small glimpse of their personality and mind state. My favorite colors have definitely changed as I’ve grown up, and I wonder if there’s a reason physiologically or mentally as to why that is. I used to really like navy blue and neon green—two colors that are now two of my least favorite colors—and I now enjoy lavender, khaki/olive green, yellows, and black (which has stayed a favorite of mine). Also, my high school had a dress code where you had to wear a polo shirt that was either navy blue, white, black gray, or red. I realized one day that on any given day, at least 50% of the students were wearing a red shirt. I don’t know if that’s because people are just drawn to the color red because it’s bright or if there’s a mental connection with it that maybe makes people more engaged in learning or happier. I would love to study color and its effects further though because it’s just so interesting to me, so thanks for this blog post!

  2. Cristen Heaton

    Just about a year or so ago I changed the color in my bedroom at home because it was giving me a negative vibe so it is actually really cool that you did a blog post about this. I had a boyfriend at the time when my room was an aqua color and it was a very abusive relationship and after I ended things, every time I stepped into my room it was an awful feeling. My parents and I ended up making the switch to a light coral color and my room is so much vibrant now. I love it! I also was just talking to some people about how living in a residence hall and having such a small space to set up a condensed version of your life is quite interesting. It really shows you who people are when you see their side of the room. I think it is so unique. I found this article from Huffington Post and I thought it was a great way to look at the different colors and see how they affect our moods.


  3. Wesley Scott Alexander

    Ive heard of this before but had not really done much research into it. It seems very interesting and is used in the world around us more often than I originally knew. I thought this article was interesting as it examines the psychology of color from a marketing perspective.

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