Choose Your Interior Paint Colors with Certainty

If you’ve ever painted the inside of your home or office, then you know that choosing interior paint colors is tricky. You may think you’ve found the perfect color, but then when it’s on the wall it looks completely different that you thought it would. It can be downright maddening. Is there a way to choose paint colors with certainty?

As experts in electrostatic spray painting, we wanted to help you understand how light influences the appearance of interior paint colors, and what to keep in mind when choosing paint colors for your next project.

How Sunlight Affects Colors

Natural light should always be considered when choosing the color for a space. As the amount of sunlight and the angle at which it enters the room changes throughout the day, so will the colors in the room.

  • North-facing rooms: Light that comes into north-facing room is cool and bluish. This is the ideal backdrop for using bold colors. Strong, vibrant colors will pop, while lighter colors and muted tones will be washed out.
  • South-facing rooms: The light that enters south-facing room is high and bright. This type of light brings out the best in cool and warm colors, so it’s hard to make the wrong choice. Dark colors will look brighter and lighter colors will virtually glow.
  • East-facing rooms: Light that comes into east-facing rooms changes throughout the day. It starts out warm and yellowy before noon, then turns bluer later in the day. Red, orange, and yellow paint colors are ideal in east-facing rooms. Avoid blues, greens, and purples.
  • West-facing rooms: West-facing rooms are the most challenging rooms to paint. There’s very little morning light so colors may look dull and shadowy. In the evening, the light becomes beautiful and warm, which enhances colors. Pairing complimentary colors from the color wheel is a good technique to use in these rooms. That way, there is always an area of the room that is being shown in the best light.

How Light Bulbs Affect Color

The type of bulb you use can alter the colors in a room, as well.

  • Incandescents: The warm, yellow-amber light of these bulbs will make reds, oranges, and yellows more vivid, while muting blues and greens.
  • Fluorescents: This flat and cool light enriches blues and greens.
  • Halogens: These white lights resemble natural light and make all colors look more vivid. Using halogens would make the shift from daylight to artificial light less jarring.
  • Compact fluorescent lights (CFLs): CFLs can produce either a warm white, neutral, or bluish-white light. Choose vibrant colors if you have this kind of light.
  • Light-emitting diodes (LEDs): You can buy warmer or cooler LEDs, and even “smart” LED bulbs that you can control wirelessly. This gives you the flexibility to choose the interior paint color you want and find the bulb to enhance it.

More Tips for Achieving the Perfect Color

Here are some additional tips for choosing the right interior paint colors for your space.

  1. Paint squares of primed drywall with samples of the colors you’re considering, and then move them around the room during the day as the sun shifts.
  2. Natural and artificial light will work together during certain times of day, especially in summer when dusk lasts a long time. Turn on artificial lights even during daylight to see how that affects the color.
  3. Remember that glossy finishes reflect light and change the way the color looks, whereas flat finishes are less reflective and allow colors to look truer under bright light.
  4. Your carpet choice can have an impact on walls too. A bright blue rug, for instance, can cast a bluish tone on a white wall.
  5. Check out Spray Finishes’ color matching services. We have the ability to custom match physical samples of existing colors as well as a wide array of manufacturers’ standard colors. It is our job to match what you have in mind and bring your vision to life.

Spray Finishes, a division of Stone Services, has been in the electrostatic spray painting business since 1938. They specialize in on-site painting, and also have a 10,000 square foot shop for large off-site jobs. Spray Finishes’ friendly and knowledgeable staff is ready to serve you at any of their five tristate area locations, including New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Long Island, and Westchester. Contact Spray Finishes today for an estimate on your next painting project.

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