The Psychology Behind Your Paint Color Choices

Your pick shows your true colors.

The Psychology Behind Your Paint Color Choices
Photographed by Stephen Busken.

Have you ever thought about what draws you to particular colors? Well according to a new study by Sherwin-Williams, it looks like quite a bit of psychology is involved. In fact, where you live, your age, and your gender can totally change your opinions about different colors!

Take green for example. Millennials are 9% more likely than baby boomers to associate green with energy, while boomers are 6% more likely than millennials to associate it with calmness. Curious why? Dr. Sally Augustin, PhD, an environmental design psychologist has some answers.

"People have favorite colors and colors they link to positive, milestone events in their lives, like their wedding colors for example," says Dr. Augustin. "Seeing those shades generally has upbeat emotional implications. Interestingly, no matter where on the planet you go, people are most likely to say that their favorite color is blue, which makes this a great color to consider in a home.”

The new study proves her point. 62% of respondents chose blue as a favorite color, while surprisingly black was chosen 32% of the time. Wonder what 42% of Americans think is the happiest color? Sunny yellow of course. Curiously, one stat we found super interesting is men are more than twice as likely as women to associate yellow with weakness. Who knew?

Color preferences can also be regional too. Midwesterners like green, pink, and red more than other colors while Southerners love that classic blue. Now if only they tested out to see if all millennials really love pink...

I am Lonny's Senior Associate Editor. You can find me writing about interior tips, scouting out the coolest new spots, and rallying behind amazing female entrepreneurs. You can reach me at or on Instagram @shelbywax.
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