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Neutral, Warm, or Cool Colors: Which Are Best for Your Home?

As you pick out furnishings, accessories, flooring, etc. for your home, there are a lot of decisions to make, including what colors you may want to use. Following are guides to three of the general categories of colors: Neutral, warm, and cool.

Different neutrals offer different advantages

Brown is a neutral color that brings to mind nature, wood, and stability. It can be very grounding when used in accents, but overusing it can make a room seem monochromatic. This doesn’t mean you have to add bright colors though – bright white accents will work. White is another popular neutral color and brings to mind purity, cleanliness, and goodness. That said, if using too much white can make a room seem sterile. When used in moderation, white is a neutral that can help open up a room. White walls are especially helpful in making a room feel larger than it is. Finally, though black is a neutral color, it’s not typically a good choice as a dominant color, unless you’re decorating a home theater. Why? Because black is powerful and that power should be used in moderation. It is better used to ground and balance light colors.

Warmer colors have their purpose

When a room is decorated with warm colors, psychologists say that those warm colors can both energize people and make them hungrier. Red in particular reminds people of fire, anger, and love. It’s been shown to raise both a person’s metabolism and their blood pressure. We recommend using red sparingly. Interesting as well is that red is the color of good fortune according to Feng Shui. Pink, which is also a warm color, gives off the feelings of peace, happiness, and love. As a result, it’s often a top choice for a child’s bedroom. Fans of red who want a similar color without the bold effects may pick pink too.

Cold colors do something else entirely

Colder colors have been shown to relax people and to make them less hungry, which can be good or bad depending on a particular person’s situation. Blue, one of the more popular cold colors, gives off feelings of stability, confidence, and openness. Light blue is a great choice for a living room or bedroom because it can be calming, but dark blue colors can actually make people feel sad. Purple gives the feeling of luxury, wealth, creativity, and ambition. Fewer decorate with purple but it’s actually a very versatile color.


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