How Color Affects Your Mood - and What That Means for Your Interior Design Projects

Whether you're a professional interior designer with an art school degree or just an HGTV fan who likes to dabble in Pinterest-worthy projects, choosing the right color for your space should be at the top of your list of design priorities. Decorating trends come and go, but there's a science behind the psychology of color. Choosing the right shade for your room depends a lot on the mood you want to create: A restful bedroom, an energizing kitchen, and a cozy den all require a different color to create the feeling you're looking for. No matter what color you are looking for, be sure to use the COLOR MUSE color matching tool today! 

Color Basics

With the exceptions of pure white and black, all colors have a basic property of warmth and coolness. A warm color contains hints of red or yellow, while a cool color has a bluish cast. Even a color like pink can lean in either direction: Though the shade is basically a lighter version of warm red, it can have an even warmer salmon tone or a cooler, lilac one. Warm colors make objects appear closer, but cool colors will make your walls appear to recede into the distance. If you're looking to create a feeling of more space, colors with a cool undertone will do the trick; conversely, warmer shades will help bring a large room down to size and make it feel a bit cozier.

Likewise, a pastel version of any color will feel airy and light, while a deeper, more saturated shade farther down on your paint chip will inject more energy into your space. Colors that are toned down with a bit of gray or brown will add a layer of calm to any color as well.

Color and Mood

Though you can tinker with the version of the color you choose to make it somewhat more or less intense, each color has a general mood associated with it. Check out this list to see if your favorite color is right for the space you're trying to decorate based on the atmosphere you want to create:


Red is the ultimate power color. It's energizing, intense and urgent, encouraging people to move about. It also draws the eye and calls attention to itself. Red is a shout, not a whisper!


Yellow causes strong emotions. At its best, it's cheerful and clean, reminiscent of a sunny day. At its worst, it's too intense and can lead to feelings of anger or irritation. In the art of feng shui, yellow is associated with creativity as well.


Blue is a calming color that creates a serene spot wherever you use it. A perennial favorite, it's a reminder of clear skies and open space. Blue is a good choice for lowering stress levels and encouraging people to slow down.


Synonymous with nature, green is another calming choice. Green can create a tranquil environment where you can refresh and recharge. Green also helps create a feeling of balance.


White provides a sense of cleanliness and order, though you may have different feelings about it depending on your temperament. For some, white is irritatingly sterile, while others revel in its ability to accentuate clean lines.


Earth tones of all types are grounding and can help you feel centered. When paired with other neutrals, brown can provide a sense of stability. Darker tones of brown lend an air of seriousness to your space.



As a mix of energetic red and cheerful yellow, orange is an optimistic hue. It can stimulate the appetite as well as the desire to communicate and converse.


Long associated with royalty, deeper shades of purple feel rich and luxurious. Lighter hues, however, foster a sense of spirituality and creativity.

To get the perfect color for your room, consider the feeling you want to create in the space, then choose the color to match! If you need help choosing a good matching color, be sure to check out our color matching tool! COLOR MUSE is exactly what you need to transform your space into the perfect oasis.