It’s well-known and documented that colors can heal and improve your life and your living space. Therapeutic color palettes are being embraced more often now as a way of not only uplifting the aesthetic value but also the energy of both residential and commercial dwellings.
In this blog post, I discuss how certain colors can be healing and how to use them to enhance and elevate the energy in your home, simply by reconfiguring your color usage.
This therapeutic color palettes guide is intended for those with a basic understanding of how color works or at least some familiarity with using a color wheel.
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You can follow along and then make sure to play around with the Coolors app afterward. Here you can get comfortable with using a popular and highly effective color palette generator.
It’ll give you a taste of what it’s like working with professional color palettes.
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- Colors renowned for their therapeutic and healing qualities
- How to create an extended color palette for each therapeutic color
- Using therapeutic color palettes for choosing wall art
- Therapeutic color palettes for your home decor – new or existing
- How to create therapeutic color palettes:
- How to reconfigure your current color palette to incorporate therapeutic colors
- Therapeutic color palettes – Conclusion
Colors renowned for their therapeutic and healing qualities
Certain hues in the color spectrum are famous for their therapeutic qualities.
I’ve been using certain colors based on their chakra healing qualities and because the benefits are widely accepted.
The colors are also relatable and easy to derive an extensive color palette from. In fact, you can really have some fun with it without getting overly technical or complicated with the science behind it.
Hues – Therapeutic colors you can use to create palettes:
This color is known for its association with wealth and royalty and for its association with the Amethyst crystal, in particular its healing qualities.
The crystal and the color purple itself are used in Feng Shui and energy healing to attract and draw in a sense of calm and sharpen one’s intuition.
It’s excellent for countering anxiety and depression.
Sleeping with a small amethyst crystal under your pillow or placing a raw, freestanding one on your nightstand can suppress anxious thoughts and bring a sense of tranquility or serenity to you and the room itself.
Turquoise, Aqua, and blues like Cobalt are associated with the throat chakra or energy center. It’s renowned for promoting self-confidence and healing the voice, allowing you to fully express yourself. If you love royal blue, then you’ll love the intense color of Lapis lazuli. It’s a beautiful stone to decorate with.
The crystals and their colors are excellent for those wanting to counter shyness and use their voice more and with greater confidence.
These colors are not only soothing to the eye, but it’s also versatile and well-loved in any interior living space as well as outdoors.
Most people love the opportunity to express that soulfulness and self-awareness through art, decor objects and furniture. Whether it’s a modern, ceramic, freestanding vase, an aqua blue couch, or a visually stunning, abstract, contemporary wall art piece. The possibilities are both exciting and healing for the soul.
This gorgeous, uplifting color is unsurprisingly associated with the heart, alongside the color green.
Pink may not be for everyone, but it certainly is a romantic and optimistic color to work with. It’s no wonder that so many romantic clichés and narratives involve the color pink.
The therapeutic meaning of the color involves not only giving and receiving love outwardly but also fostering love within oneself.
That’s why it’s a great color for decorating with and no doubt a wonderful, healing color to include in art you either create yourself or invest in.
This color in popular culture is associated with money and wealth. But, it also has an association with the heart in metaphysical philosophy.
It can draw in luck and dissolve anger and stress. Even helps you move on from a traumatic situation.
So if you’re embarking on a life-changing journey like moving on from a break-up or moving house, this is a good colour to use. In particular, using a beautiful and elegant crystal-like Malachite is very good to work with as it is famous for this transformative quality.
Carnelian and Citrine are famous orange crystals known for courage, creativity, and attracting wealth.
It’s been my color of choice for my design business which thrives on deadlines and a high level of continuous creativity and passion.
If you have an offbeat aesthetic, this is a joyful color to use in your interior and if you create art, it’s no doubt a color that will inspire feelings of self-confidence and assuredness in all who look at it.
In this context, red is associated with the healing benefits that foster a feeling of being grounded. Use it to promote a sense of stability and security. It’s also excellent for reducing symptoms of anxiety.
Aesthetically this is a great opportunity to use reds in the form of its tints and shades.
So, if you’re already a fan of grape, wine, and burgundy types of deep reds, here’s your opportunity to hone the therapeutic color qualities of it.
How to create an extended color palette for each therapeutic color
You can use the above section as a reference for which colors you’d like to use for its healing qualities.
But, to demonstrate this section, I’m going to use the color purple and then you can apply the technique to whichever color you like.
Wheel with indicators for complementary, split complementary and triad color schemes; how to tint and shade, primary, secondary and tertiary references, and more.
Therapeutic Purple colour palettes
The range of colors in the palette below includes the actual hue plus its tints and shades.
Here, I’ll show you how to create this extended color palette from this single hue:
- The easiest way to derive a color palette from a single hue is to take the solid color and decrease the opacity or value by percentage increments. For instance, reduce the opacity of the hue by 25% each time to produce 4 tints. If you’re working electronically, you can just reduce by using the transparency or opacity slider in your graphics app of choice. If you’re working manually with paint – whether as an artist, designer, or decorator – you can simply add percentage increments of White.
- Another method is to use a color palette generator like Coolors. This is just one example and there are many others out there, so do experiment and have fun with it. All you do is insert the solid color (hue) into the generator and specify a color palette with tints of it. Or you can do it manually as well by spot-selecting and as the saying goes “eyeballing it”. This way is purely intuitive and it does help if you have some experience and confidence with knowing how to create colour harmony.
NOTE: Apply either of the two methods above to produce shades. Except, where you have to reduce color to get a tint, conversely you’ll add Black to create a shade ie. to make the color darker. You can do this with both electronic and analog (non-digital) versions.
There are many ways to create a color palette, but for this exercise, I’ve selected 2 techniques you will find the most helpful:
- Monochromatic color palette – consisting of 1 chosen Hue (100% solid color); White; Black
- Simultaneous Contrast colour palette – consisting of 2 Hues and their Tints, and Shades
This is an example of a Purple Monochromatic Colour Palette:
This is the (purple) Hue at 100% solid color.
The image below is a range of Tints and Shades created by adding percentages of White or Black.
In the next section we take a look at Simultaneous Contrast which consists of two complementary colors.
Below is an example of complimentary colors on a color wheel.
I find Simultaneous Contrast more interesting in that it makes the colors ‘vibrate’.
It’s a great visual technique to use when you need to make either of the two complimentary colors the hero color, instead of both.
When two colors, even though complementary, are placed alongside each other, they can fight for center-stage. This is when implementing some form of simultaneous contrast becomes effective.
Normally you’d choose a primary and secondary colour as the complimentary color combo. But, I’m going to take it one step further and suggest using the tints and shades to create more visual harmony.
How to calculate simultaneous contrast:
- Choose two complimentary colors – Eg. Purple + Yellow
- Choose your ‘hero’ color – Eg. Purple
- Create Tints (see above how-to) of Yellow
- Place those Tints alongside the Purple – choose however many you want
In the first example below, you can see the Purple take centre-stage and the Yellow tints and shades are contrasting well and the effect is balanced.
You can see how the palette is visually stimulating yet completely harmonious because it’s still complimentary ie. technically ‘correct’.
Now, repeat the same process for the other colors using my examples (image below) as a guide.
Using therapeutic color palettes for choosing wall art
Here are examples of the above two types of color palettes used in wall art.
This is another way of looking at wall art when shopping for it and how you could create therapeutic color palettes in it.
Monochromatic color palette
Simultaneous Contrast color palette
Therapeutic color palettes for your home decor – new or existing
These examples perfectly demonstrate how therapeutic color palettes are used in home decor specifically ie. objects and furniture that are not permanently installed.
Monochromatic color palette
Simultaneous Contrast color palette
How to create therapeutic color palettes:
Have fun with this as it’s meant to be both beneficial and uplifting.
Use purple as the hero color to attract calm, and serenity and heighten your intuition. Combine it with yellow for health and that will not only promote but reinforce a calm and serene state of mental health.
Create a color palette that heals your heart and draws in romance, self-love, and a kind, generous spirit by contrasting it with green, also a heart-healing color.
Here, simultaneous contrast will work really well.
Use green to heal the heart, attract money, luck, and success, and couple it with orange for courage, strength, and a fearless attitude.
This color palette will promote being open to challenges and new opportunities. Great for attracting wealth and new business.
Aqua, Turquoise, and Blue are associated with self-expression, ‘speaking your truth’, and finding your voice.
Use this in combination with orange-yellows and you’ll have a powerful combination of courage, strength, optimism, and a sense of being fully expressed.
Truly a therapeutic color palette that heals the throat chakra and celebrates your ‘voice’.
Normally associated with ‘fire’ and ‘fearlessness’, this color in the healing and therapeutic context is synonymous with Red Jasper crystals, and its ability to ground you.
It’s connected to the Root Chakra which promotes a sense of grounding and a feeling of connection, and support.
If you’re interested in this topic, you can read more about it here.
Combine red with its complimentary color green and you’ll have a therapeutic color palette that promotes a strong heart and a grounded, fearless sensibility.
Simultaneous contrast works well here to balance out the intensity of these two colors. So, work the formula until you have a combo that is easy on the eye and doesn’t feel too ‘hectic’ in your environment or living space.
Color Scheme decodes the often overlooked color concepts that can be found in art history and visual culture. Color Scheme is the perfect book for anyone interested in learning more about, or rethinking, how we see the world around us.
How to reconfigure your current color palette to incorporate therapeutic colors
How to reconfigure your decor and wall art to include therapeutic colors:
- Choose a predominant color – one that is obvious or present in most of your decor items or wall art.
- You should have one of the healing colors present in this. If not, don’t worry. Spot your predominant color anyway.
- Now, choose a complementary color for it. Here’s your opportunity to pick a healing color, so choose one that just happens to be its complimentary color.
- Now implement the same formula as above but using tints and shades.
It’s easier and cheaper to work with two colors instead of adding a third or more. You are most welcome to do so and like I said at the beginning of the post, there are many other techniques for creating color palettes.
It contains 205 palettes with 975 different colors. Each has a HEX code, allowing you to quickly check and convert them into RGB, CMYK, and other formats.
Therapeutic color palettes – Conclusion
This post is a beginner-friendly guide for how to think about color palette creation in a simple and ‘manual’ way.
It’s good to get a grounding into how a basic color palette is created before diving into playing around with more complicated versions.
If you liked this blog post, you’ll love these:
- Olive Green Aesthetic – this color fosters growth, wisdom, and compassion
- Dopamine Decor Gift Guide – colorful gifts they’ll love forever
- 5 Pink Colour Palettes to use in your art or decor project right now
- Viva Magenta! 5 Hot Pink Art you’ll love forever
- Kelly Green Kelly-inspired art that will invigorate your home
When you don’t have time to read, simply watch the video below for more 2023 artful inspiration.
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