4 Colors You Should Never Paint Your Bedroom, According to Color Experts

published Jul 14, 2019
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ICYMI: There’s a lot more to decorating your bedroom than picking out a set of nice sheets. (Though let’s be clear: Quality sheets are a must.)

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Your bedroom is the one place in your home that is totally dedicated to you—not hosting your friends and family or reheating leftovers—so it’s important to create a space that feels like a slice of solace.

Sure you can layer on the throw pillows and add some soft light bulbs, but few things can ruin your bedroom’s laid back vibe like a less-than-soothing paint hue. 

When it comes to your bedroom, beauty lies in the eye of the beholder— and your paint choice is no exception. If you really like a paint color, we say go for it no matter what. But if you want to design your bedroom with only the sweetest of dreams in mind, check out the hues color experts suggest staying far away from. (Hint: Bright hues are a no go.)

1. Red

“I’d avoid painting a bedroom red. Although you may love an old-fashioned, Parisian boudoir, remember that those rooms weren’t primarily intended for sleeping! Red is an energetic color which advances to the unpleasant sensation that the walls are coming towards you as you’re trying to sleep – not conducive to a calm and peaceful mood!” — Annie Sloan, color expert and creator of Chalk Paint

2. Bright Green

“Bedroom paint colors to avoid: Any neon colors or bright colors. Bedrooms are a place to relax and be serene, as you’re there to sleep in the space most of the time. But have you ever seen a bright, highlighter yellow bedroom? Or what about Lime Green? You walk into a room like that you wouldn’t want to sleep in—and won’t be able to! It would keep you up at night even if the lights were turned out.” —Linda Hayslett, principal at LH.Designs

3. Orange

“There is quite a bit of science behind how color affects the brain. If you’re choosing a paint color for a bedroom and actually want to sleep, I would stick with muted blues and greens.  Colors to be sure to avoid are bright yellows, reds, and orange.”—Lisa Rickert, founder and creative director of Jolie Home

4. Anything Saturated

“Color plays a big role in creating the overall ambiance of the room. It’s no wonder Smoke 2122-40, Collingwood OC-28, and Wickham Gray HC-171 are some of Benjamin Moore’s popular bedroom color choices. These light, muted hues promote relaxation and comfort, setting the mood for a good night’s sleep. Bright, saturated colors, on the other hand, can trigger a sense of alertness. Reserve the vivid hues for statement walls or for rooms that require high energy instead.” —Hannah Yeo, Benjamin Moore Color and Design Expert

5. Anything that doesn’t work for you

“I don’t think there are any hard or fast rules for choosing a bedroom color. Everyone is different, and a color that might give you a headache could make someone else super happy. I would generally shy away from anything too bright though. I believe that the bedroom should make you feel calm and cozy.” — Jamie Davis, co-founder and owner of Portola Paints & Glazes