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Colors Associated With Stress


Colors Associated With Stress

14 Apr 2022
by Dhanya Parameswaran

It comes as no surprise that the state of our vicinity can affect our mood and stress levels. In fact, a study conducted by Minnesota State University discovered that the combinations and saturations of certain colors being paired together can cause a stressful response in our minds and pituitary glands. To combat this, we have prepared a simple guide below to walk you through the rule of colors and keep your stress levels contained:


Although classified and marketed as a statement-making color in advertising props, it is not exactly the most calming color in the color wheel. Red is a stimulating color that heightens our heart rates and signals rapid breathing. Studies have shown that people generally perform worst in cognitive tests when surrounded by the jarring hue. You might want to think twice before painting your accent walls fire engine red and opt for pink instead to decrease feelings of agitation and anxiety.


Are you convinced that white is remarkably calming and dubbed the most soothing color in the color wheel? Think again!

At odds with popular belief, white can trigger anxiety when you are being surrounded by too much of it as spaces with no variation in this hue can elicit the opposite response. Anyone who has ever worn a crisp white dress shirt, skirt or shoes would be incredibly familiar with the trembling fear of spilling anything on their pristine clothes. Just imagine the concerns you would have if your entire room was painted in white!

Instead, you should opt to pair white walls with beige accents or fill the empty room with furniture of different shades of white to create contrast and monochromatic color schemes. Adding gray as a palette cleanser or backdrop also makes it easier on your eyes to look at if you are stationed there for a long period of time.

Bright hues

Subconsciously your penchant for bright and bold colors could be causing unnecessary stress. Studies show that saturated hues paired with multiple shades of contrasting colors can be great for creating energizing effects in humans. However, this concoction of colors could be hard to be around with for an extended period of time and ultimately leads to anxiety and stress. This frightful plot only thickens when you group several bright colors in the same space. Apart from promoting stress, this combination of many colors in a cluttered space can be a complete headache!

The key to resolving this issue is to strike a fine balance by selecting a color just a few squares in the lighter direction on the paint deck.