Do you feel stressed out in a yellow room? Does blue or green color seems soothing and relax you? Colors literally affect our moods! And that is not it. Colors affect one’s personality, health (in some ways), abilities and performance. History shows that people used colors to cure and prevent diseases. Now, some studies have shown that colors play a role in developing a person’s moods.
Studies have also shown that some colors can actually increase or decrease stress levels. Some colors are responsible for hypertension, vision problems etc. Though there is no extensive study in observing how colors affect us, but somehow they do affect and shape our personalities.
What is Color Psychology?
Color psychology can be summed up as how different hues affect and shape human behavior. It is shown that colors increase the effectiveness of placebos (pills or injections that are for psychological reasons, they are inert otherwise). Red or orange placebos are good stimulants. They represent effectiveness, energy and stimulation.
Color psychology is widely used in marketing, branding, cooking, medicine, designing etc. there is certain logic to use different color schemes to promote brands, websites etc. For example, it is seen that green and blue colored websites are visited more than others as blue and green colors are soothing and the text is more visible. So, the mind becomes more receptive.
Selection of colors can change and vary according to age, region and mood. A person can like bright hues in younger age and settle for less brighter shades when they become older. Likewise, a person can love wearing red short but does not like it as his car’s color. So, we cannot generalize the patterns that how colors are selected and affect the people. Yet, colors do change or affect the behavior in certain aspects which are discussed below.
Color therapy also called chromotherapy is another way to heal the body. It is a pseudoscience and those who believe in it present logic and reasons and demonstrate that hoe different colors can affect a person’s physical and mental health.
Colors have different frequencies and vibrations. They enter the body through skin also. When specific color is allowed to penetrate the skin, it can cause certain hormones to activate and thus chemical reactions can take place which in consequence affect the person’s health. Mind conceives different colors in different manners. It is observed that if an anxious or emotionally unstable person is subjected to blue light, it causes a soothing effect. Green light also has soothing effects. But, yellow light is sharp and can stimulate a person suffering from depression.
Though it seems interesting and studies also second this logic, but there are no real scientific reasons that show the pathway of how colors can heal a person. But there is no harm to try it. You can paint the bedroom with blue and green combination to sooth and relax. Similarly, schools and hospitals are (and should be) painted blue and green to help students and patients relax and feel more like home.
Colors and energy level:
Colors can enhance a person’s energy level. They boost one’s energy. If you enter a room filled with bright light, you will feel energetic. Again this ‘feel’ is not explained scientifically yet.
Seeing red color can make muscles move faster and thus strengthen one physically. That is why it is recommended to wear red color while working out! But it does not mean that one cannot work out wearing black or any other outfit. It is observed that warm tones (red, orange, yellow) evoke emotions and energy.
Colors and purchase:
Color psychology has a lot to do with the brand and customer’s purchase. Choosing an appropriate color for your brand is very important to attract the right customers. But does the choice of color can tell about your personality? Well, it can! In certain ways. We can take the example of a car purchase. It is observed that:
- Many people prefer white cars because they are simple and plain and they give fresh feeling to the owner.
- The Black color is often described as a powerful color. May be that is why many luxury vehicles are black in color. Black colored vehicles are often chosen by the people who like to dominate and are expressive.
- The Silver color is linked to modernity and balance. Many vehicles and gadgets are silver in color that reflect modernity, tech oriented and novelty.
- The Blue color shows safety and stability. The owner can be thought of a trustworthy and mature person who is trustworthy.
- The Red car shows the boldness and confidence of the owner.
The selection of color is often influenced by certain factors like choice, price, demand etc. People also choose cars according to the weather and region. Like people often choose warm shades in colder regions and lighter shades n warmer regions. So, it is not only the personality but other factors also that determine the purchase of certain colored product more.
Color and performance:
As said, some colors boost energy and so they enhance the performance at work. If you wear bright colors at work, you will feel energetic and fresh. It is observed that wearing grey color can make person feel down and imparts negative effects on the performance.
One study has shown that seeing a red color before taking an exam can affect performance in a negative way. While, seeing green color can enhance performance in an exam. No one likes to see red graded report card and exam papers. If they are marked with green pen, it imparts positive thoughts in the students.
Modern research on color therapy:
Most psychologists state that often color psychology exaggerates the effects of colors on one’s personality. But many are of the view that color really does effect the moods, personality and behavior but it is of short term.
Modern researches have shown some astonishing ways in which color affects us:
- It is studied that sports teams that are dressed in black often face more penalties.
- Blue street lights can decrease the crime rate in an area.
- Warm colored placebo pills have more effects than lighter or colorless placebo pills.
- Red color can induce speed and force in the athletes.
Colors does affects the personality and moods of a person but the effects are not obvious. Certain factors are also included like age, region, and weather etc. Modern researchers are intrigued to study more about the pathways in which colors affect us. So, we can hope for some major leaps in the field of color psychology in this century!