Our sex lives, moods, appetites and how well our brain works are all affected by different colours.
How it happens;
Billionaire Christian Grey may have his red room of pain in the saucy bestseller Fifty Shades of Grey. But it turns out that purple is actually the sexiest colour you can paint your bedroom in. A new survey has found that people with a purple colour scheme in their boudoir have the most sex — clocking up 3.49 intimate encounters each week. And despite the title of the EL James blockbuster, those with grey bedrooms notch up a paltry 1.8 weekly romps, according to an international web portal. But it’s not just our sex lives that are influenced by colour. So are our moods, our appetites and how well our brain works. Here’s how different hues affect us.
If you want to lose weight, try painting your kitchen blue. One study found that diners who eat in a blue room, compared to one painted red or yellow, eat a third less calories. Says Kenneth Fehrman, co-author of Color: The Secret Influence, “We have deep-seated instincts to avoid blue foods, or anything linked to them, as they tend to be poisonous.”
Studies have found the girly hue has a calming effect on the mind. Dr Alexander Schauss, director of the American Institute for Biosocial and Medical Research in Washington, was the first to discover how the shade dampens anger and anxiety in the late 70s. Dr Schauss explains: “Even if a person tries to be angry or aggressive in the presence of pink, he can’t. The heartmuscles can’t race fast enough. “It’s a tranquillising colour that saps your energy.” Perhaps it’s no surprise that women respond more positively to pink.
The colour red has been found to make men more attracted to the opposite sex, researchers at the University of Rochester, New York, found. Nearly 100 men were shown photographs of women in different-coloured clothes and those in scarlet were rated as much more desirable. In the experiment, women also rated men in red as more attractive. Scientists believe it is because the human mind unconsciously -associates red with arousal — as well as power.
Studies show that yellow improves concentration, because it literally “wakes up” the brain and nervous system. Smiley faces are also this colour because looking at yellow has been found to trigger the release of feel-good brain chemical serotonin. Colour -psychologist Kate Nightingale, who advises clients how to use colour to make the right impression, says how our bodies respond to colours depend on the emotions the shades evoke. “These reactions are often linked to our experiences of nature,” says Kate.
Green has a calming effect, which is why TV studios have “green rooms” to calm guests’ nerves before they appear on screen. Before the arrival of interactive classroom displays, blackboards were painted green because it was easier for students to look at them. And in one study, office workers who could see green out of the window liked their jobs more, were happier and healthier. Several other surveys have also found that green puts consumers in a more relaxed state.
Although white is associated with simplicity, tests by US space agency, NASA, found workers in white rooms work less well than those in pastel rooms, possibly because they find the stark contrasts around them distracting. However, white is also a calming colour. In one test, people with hand tremors were found to shake less in white rooms. Kate Nightingale says: “White implies honesty and purity, and wearing it has also been found to make people act in a more altruistic way, which is why doctors and nurses wear this colour.” Because black is often seen as a powerful colour, it can also be interpreted as aggressive. In one experiment by the University of Florida, two hockey teams were made to swap their black and white-coloured sportsuniforms. Whichever team wore the black jerseys saw their players penalised for more fouls.