It’s a year-and-a-half since the COVID-19 pandemic started. For many of us, staying at home has been the best thing to do to help prevent the spread of the virus. It also means we’ve been staring at the same four walls for what seems like an eternity, which could be having an impact on our mental health. With awareness around the topic of mental health continuing to increase, we now know a lot more about the effect that a lockdown can have on our overall well-being. Which raises the question, is there something we can do about it by adapting our living spaces to better cope with being stuck at home?


Studies have shown that colours are an important factor when considering how our surroundings can affect our mental health. In essence, it takes into account how various colours can influence our state of mind – as well as our emotions and behaviours. When faced with a prolonged global pandemic, good health and well-being are of even greater concern, as reflected in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), one of which focuses on ensuring healthy lives and promoting well-being at all ages (SDG 3) as part of its sustainable development framework.

The study of colours shows that blue and green can create a calming atmosphere, orange and yellow can stimulate appetite, red and pink can inspire passion and energy, and purple can boost creativity and productivity. However, everyone’s feeling towards a colour is unique because it’s often rooted in personal experiences or culture. Given that colour can have such a powerful impact on our moods, feelings and behaviours, it’s well worth investigating which colours can positively influence our mental health during periods of prolonged isolation.


Dulux, the leading decorative paints brand from AkzoNobel, offers more than 2,000 colour choices. This kaleidoscope of hues and shades can help transform places into unique living spaces that meet people’s individual needs. Various products also offer enhanced functionality, such as the anti-bacterial and stain resistant properties in Dulux EasyClean™. When correctly applied, a protective layer forms which prevents the growth of bacteria and can effectively repel common household stains. Both the anti-bacterial and stain resistant properties are especially useful in households with younger children.

In fact, the study of colours aligns with the company’s own approach to sustainability. Known as People. Planet. Paint. it’s designed to ensure that AkzoNobel products have a positive impact. This includes caring for and prioritising the health and well-being of people everywhere, while delivering sustainable solutions through constant innovation. Meanwhile, the company’s global Let’s Colour initiative has been transforming lives and uplifting communities for more than ten years, using the power of paint to make living spaces more fun, liveable, and enjoyable.


To get more colour inspiration and creative ideas from Dulux, visit:

“Whatever shade you decide on, it’s important to remember that the colours we choose to surround ourselves with can play an important role in maintaining our overall mental well-being. And AkzoNobel is proud to help consumers create their perfect living space,” says Heleen van Gent, Creative Director of AkzoNobel’s Global Aesthetic Centre. “That is why AkzoNobel releases its Colour of the Year every year, to enable consumers to paint their homes with colours that are relevant and truly describe the mood of the moment,” she added.

When colours matter

When it comes to selecting colours, choosing earthy green tones and mixing them with blue tones can provide a relaxing and rejuvenating environment for the mind and body. Let’s look at the bedroom, for example. It’s where we sleep and revitalise ourselves. It’s a place that should embody peacefulness to enable better quality sleep. For example, a bedroom using a calming shade of cool blue like Brooding Storm (87BG 27/077) paired with a light shade of green such as Grey Jeans (45GY 55/052) can create a peaceful and serene space for the body to be at ease and reduce stress and anxiety.

Another area where many of us spend a lot of time and energy is the study or home office. This is a space where we tend to be our most productive, so it’s important to make this an environment that encourages creativity. The complementary pairings of light purple and off-white colours, such as Timescape (70YR 50/086) for the main wall and After the Rain (10YR 73/038) for the ceiling skirting is perfect for creating a calming and productive environment in which both adults and children can work and study. The elegant white complements the light purple and gives the room a timeless aesthetic, while also encouraging creativity and productivity.

Now let’s move to the living room. This should be an energetic and engaging environment, as the living room is where most people socialise and spend time together. Using earthy tones such as Dulux’s Colour of the Year, Brave Ground (also known as Wright Stone 10YY 30/106) can create just the right mood.

A calming study area painted with Timescape (70YR 50/086) and After the Rain (10YR 73/038)


Mental Health

How the colours on your walls affect your mental well-being

An open space living room painted with Brave Ground aka, Wright Stone (10YY 30/106)

A peaceful bedroom painted with Brooding Storm (87BG 27/077) and Grey Jeans (45GY 55/052)