How To Use Paint To Transform Your Home – And Your Mood!

Did you know that the colours that you use on the walls of your home can have a huge impact on the way you feel?


by Rachel Loos |
Published on

According to the colour science (called colour psychology), some colours make us feel calm and relaxed while others are stimulating and exciting. So before you start looking at paint colours, first consider how you want a room to make you feel when you're in it, and then choose the colours that match. Here's how…

Which colours are best in a bedroom?

The bedroom is primarily the space for sleeping, something that is hugely important to our health so a bedroom really needs to help us unwind. According to the principles of colour psychology, blue is the colour that most makes us feel calm as it stills the mind, making it easier for us to fall asleep; a soft shade such as Wickes Sky is an ideal choice.
Shades such as Wickes Sage or Wickes Willow Tree are also perfect for the bedroom as greens help is feel connected to nature and this, too, helps us to feel relaxed.
Avoid stimulating colours such as bright red or yellow. Go for pastels instead – a subtle shade such as Wickes Blush creates a lovely soothing mood.

How do you create a cosy feel in a room?

Use warm colours – those that feel mellow and comforting. Go pale using a warm creamy shade such as Crown's Toasted Almond or go for something bolder such as Wickes Mustard Yellow. If you have a room that doesn't get much light, the popular option is to use pale shades to accentuate what light there is but consider going with the lack of light and painting the room a darker shade such as Wickes Admiral, for the ultimate cosy space. That's what presenter and singer, Kimberley Walsh did in her dining room. 'Instead of trying to brighten it, I went with the lack of light and painted the room a dark blue which has created a really nice, cosy vibe,' she says.

How do you use paint to create a luxe feel?

Colour drenching is the hot new way to decorate a space that oozes elegance and luxury – and makes a room feel larger. This style is about painting the same colour on the ceiling, walls, skirting, details such as cornicing along with doors, windows and their frames. It works beautifully with mid blues and greens such as Wickes Turkish Blue and Wickes Estate Green, and an elegant pink such as Wickes Marshmallow. Keep furniture in the same tone to accentuate the look but introduce a few accent pieces in contrasting colours that really pop.

How can I zone my WFH office space?

Paint is an easy way to zone a space in a room, creating an area that is marked out as separate. One way to do it is to paint the entire wall behind your WFH space or be a little more creative and colour block just the section of the wall behind it. A broad stripe is a straightforward but effective option or try a solid arch. Choose a colour that inspires you to work – according to colour psychology, stimulating and energising shades are reds, oranges and yellows; Crown's Mustard Jar, a warm yellow, will have you beavering away in no time!

How do you transform a space for less?

You don't need to paint an entire room to give it a lift. Doing just a section can add a splash of interest and colour – try adding colour to a door, frame and skirting or a window frame and ledge. Painting half way up the length of a wall in a bedroom looks sophisticated and is also a clever way to create a bed headboard effect. A ceiling painted in a colour different to the walls also looks brilliant – go pastel for a more subtle look or darker for a more dramatic vibe. You can either paint only the ceiling, or for a beautifully finished look, bring the colour about 30cm (or more in a room with a higher ceiling) down the wall.

The DIY basics you'll need

Once you’ve chosen your colours, you’ll be raring to go. But take time to get the prep done first. Painting is a relatively easy and cheap way to transform your home, but it’s not something you can rush into if you want a professional-looking result.
First of all you’ll need to prime the surface of the wall so it absorbs the paint properly. Specialist primers are needed for wood and metal surfaces, and on newly-plastered walls. If your surface has been painted before, give it a good wash (ensure it’s clean and free from dust, grease, and flaky plaster or paper), and when dry apply a matt undercoat of paint – white or off-white is usually best.

Make sure you calculate how much paint you’ll need (measure ceilings and walls to get the total surface area) and allow for two coats of paint. Buy the amount you need in one go to ensure it’s all from the same batch and the exact same shade.

For more advice, inspiration and DIY tips head to

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us