Color Psychology For Your Baby Room

We tend to decorate with colors by what we prefer, our favorite colors or shades, rather than taking into consideration how we as human beings react mentally and emotionally to different colors.

Not that there is anything wrong with just going with our favorites, however, for your baby room, you may want to understand a little about color psychology.

There’s been quite a bit of research and testing done around how we react to colors.  Marketers have used color to influence our buying habits for quite a while now.  They know that certain colors tend to make us feel hungry or influence us to spend a little extra money.

So let’s take a look at how color influences child behavior and development to help you select the best colors for your baby room.

Warm Colors

We took a look at warm colors previously in our series of articles on Planning Your Nursery.

Warm colors usually stimulate and energize us.  They tend to make rooms feel cozier and comfortable.  However, a lot of warm color in a nursery may not be relaxing enough for a little one to chill at bedtime.

A closer look at warm colors and their color psychology may help you determine how much you want to use warm colors in your baby room.


Red is great for a bit of energizing.  It tends to increase breathing and heart rate when the environment is heavily this fiery warm color.  It’s recommended that you not use too much red in a baby nursery.  It may increase levels of aggressiveness and decrease focus and concentration. 

As an accent color in a baby room, red can have the positive effect of energizing the body and increasing athletic abilities.  Just be careful to not overdo it, especially with a very active little one.


Yellow tends to be one of the colors used for a gender neutral nursery.  There is nothing wrong with that idea.  Just be sure to use a soft creamy yellow.  Bright bold yellows tend to be too harsh unless used in small doses, such as an accent color.

Too much of a bright yellow tends to make babies cry more.  A soft yellow is more calming while still making the room a bit brighter.

Yellow is cheerful and energetic, often it is associated with happiness and positive energy.  Subtle shades of yellow can stimulate concentration and focus.



Orange is often overlooked for a baby room.  This warm, comforting and friendly color stimulates social interaction and communication.  But again, as with the other warm colors, don’t get carried away with it as too much bold orange can be overstimulating for little ones.

The social nature of orange helps to put children at ease, encouraging confidence, extroversion, independence and cooperation.   



Pink universally is interpreted as a feminine girly color.  In it’s dark hues it can have an agitating effect, even increasing anxiety.  It’s recommended to not go heavy on bright, dark hues of pink.

Pastel pinks on the other hand can be more relaxing and calming while inviting empathy.


In conclusion for warm colors, used in their more subtle hues, they can be wonderful for creating cozy, inviting spaces. 

When used in their bright hues, be careful to only use as accents and not entire rooms or walls so as not to overstimulate your precious little ones.


Cool Colors

Cool colors tend to have a calm and relaxing effect on us.  They tend to make a room feel more spacious and relaxing.

In selecting hues or tones, be cautious to not go too dark as it may create a more gloomy impact rather than a calming effect.

Let’s take a look at the psychology of cool colors and see the possible impacts in your nursery.



Blue is the opposite of red on the color wheel.  Same holds true for blue’s effects on our minds and bodies.

The color blue has a calming, healing effect on us.  It decreases the feelings of anxiety and aggression.  It’s known to decrease one’s heart rate and lower blood pressure.

A blue baby room tends to have a soothing effect on little ones.  This can be a good color for a baby that has trouble resting and calming itself down.

You may want to be careful to not get too much grey in your blue tones, as this can be a bit depressing and sad.  It can also reduce one’s appetite.

For a nursery it is recommended to use warm hues of blues.  If you love navy blue, use it as accent colors rather than the whole room.



Green has a calming, refreshing and nurturing impact on babies.  It’s a wonderful color to promote learning, concentration and calmness of thought.  It has a soothing effect on babies.

Scientists have found that green may improve a child’s reading speed and comprehension.  It also reduces anxiety.

Since green is so abundant in nature, it promotes a serene and calm environment.  There are a lot of positive effects from using green in a baby room.



Purple is the color of passion, creativity, wisdom, and spirituality.  It reflects a feeling of dignity, royalty, luxury and mystery. 

For children, purple tends to inspire sensitivity and compassion.  Purple tends to be ambitious and self-assured.

Because purple is a blend of blue and red, it can take on the attributes and impacts of those colors depending on its shade.  The lighter purples like lavender and lilac are calming and serene, where the darker hues pack a bit of a punch.


Cool colors are a wonderful way to bring calm and quiet to a baby room.  Just be careful to not choose hues that are heavy on the gray side as they tend to be a bit gloomy and depressing.


Neutral Colors

Neutral colors tend to be the great balancing acts when pulling together a room.  Due to their warm and cool tendencies they are flexible compliments to the other colors in a room.

Here are a few things about the psychology of neutral colors that will help you determine what’s best for your baby room.



White promotes a calm and breezy atmosphere and is often associated with innocence and purity. 

White is the ultimate neutral color as it will compliment any color that you want to put with it.

A totally white room can be uninspiring, disorienting and lack stimulation.  It’s best to use white so soften brighter colors.

If you prefer white walls, then be sure to use splashed of other colors to evoke emotions and openness.  The starkness of a totally white room can promote secretiveness.

And of course, white is prone to stains.



We tend to think of gray as a gloomy, sad color, but it does have other effects as well.  Gray has a calming and relaxing effect.  It can inspire contemplation and thoughtfulness.  This can lead to a bit of seclusion and loneliness.

Gray is great in warmer hues and complemented with brighter colors.  Yellow and pink are great colors to warm up gray.



The color black tends to inspire authoritativeness and power.  It is a strong color that should be used in moderation in a baby nursery.   A lot of black in a room can be draining and depressing. 

Keep in mind that black walls are a nightmare to repaint and change colors. 

In bedding, furniture or accent pieces, black can be a wonderful neutral for your baby room.



Such an earthy and natural color as brown can create a warm and grounded room. 

Browns tend to work best in the extremes of a dark rich chocolaty brown or a very light tan.  The in between shades of brown tend to look a bit dirty.


While scientists have studied how colors impact our lives, emotions and physical well-being, they are still generalizations. 

We don’t all have the same reactions to the same color.  Hence, why yellow maybe your favorite color, but detested by your best friend.

As we grow up, colors may remind us of a particularly happy or sad event in our life.  We feel differently about colors based on our own histories, cultural and personal preferences and so much more. 

That’s all perfectly OK.  Our brain is able to identify what it needs, what it wants and what it likes.  So while the scientific information is helpful to give you some ideas, follow your heart when choosing the colors you want for your baby room.


Quilted Rhymes Team
   Made for Cuddling!