Wish you felt more awake during the daytime?
Well, the difference between waking up exhausted versus well-rested may actually depend on the color of your bedroom walls, says a new study by Travelodge UK.
Looking for new color options for their hotel chain, Travelodge UK discovered that the best quality sleep can be induced using soothing, calming color choices with blue being at the top of the sleep color chain.
Yellow and green also received high marks for creating a restful environment. The warm, life-giving quality of yellow is one of the things that make it a very healing hue. Green is a balance of both ends of the color spectrum. It evokes both warmth and coolness. A color ever-present in nature, it nurtures both body and soul.
Large doses of reds or purples would not be useful when trying to design respites for the end of your day. These colors are far too stimulating. Thinking warm browns in your sleeping space? Think about adding tan, aqua or another inviting color. Too much brown can create sad, depressed feelings according the study– the antithesis of the mood you are trying to achieve.
Ellen Kennon, creator of Full Spectrum Paints agrees, “ Nature-based colors are the most restful”. Her paints are “blended from the 7 colors of natural sunlight and closely mimic nature’s elements such as sky, water and stone, with infinite color and variation.” Here are a few full spectrum bedroom-perfect blues and greens.
Mary Lawlor of Kelly-Moore Paint added, “Soothing greys that mimic moonlight are said to cue the brain to know that it’s nighttime, and time for sleep have been found to promote good sleep and motivate exercise too.” She recommends these five sleep-inducing colors from their The ColorStudio Collection.
Wondering why color would have an affect on you even when your eyes are closed?
Human-based researcher, Deborah Burnett, a member of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine wondered the very same thing. She has been studying cases to identify why color and light have such a strong effect on both our quality and quantity of sleep. She suggests that there is a process of getting to that deep restful zone – the time the body preps itself for sleep. During this ‘prep stage’ our body uses its “external or environmental cues including color and light, to synchronize, our biological rhythms to the earth’s 24-hour light/dark cycle”. Research also shows that our bodies respond differently to light, and thus color at different times of day. When we are in sync with the rhythms of the earth, known as circadian rhythms, our body is energized by the bright white of early daylight. We then respond with relaxation to the dim evening lights. By the time we are ready to lay our head on a pillow, our body is already craving darkness.
How do you create an environment that supports the darkness your body desires and helps you to begin your day with a bright, energetic start?
Burnett thinks green is a ideal choice in the bedroom. She suggests deep Sage. Mid-tone neutrals are good color options for your sleeping space, as well. She suggests avoiding high contrast colors in your space. Paint ceilings a shade lighter than walls, rather than stark white. These same rules apply for trim on walls and windows.
Whatever color you choose for tranquility in your bedroom, keep the design quiet, calm and soothing. Pay close attention to your body’s natural reactions to color and light then follow its lead.
You might also like: Infographic: Missing Out On Sleep? Your Bedroom Wall Colors Could Be To Blame