The Surprising Truth About Productivity and Paint Colours


Everyone always tries to be productive at work, but sometimes it isn’t your fault when you struggle to focus in your office. Colour theory has determined that different colours affect mood and attitude differently. Painting your office a colour that helps in a way related to your work could give you that extra boost you need. 

Not all colours are created equal regarding colour theory for productivity. Many colours can have opposite effects if used incorrectly or too much in a single room. Every colour has some benefit, and knowing which colour works for you is essential. 

Productivity and colour choices go beyond favourite colours into the subconscious mind. You will not consciously think about how the colour affects you, but it will have an effect. 

Here are nine paint colours for your office to increase productivity:


Blue is a calming colour. Your office will be a more relaxing place and free from the harshness of the rest of the building. If you need to relax to concentrate, consider painting your office a lighter shade of blue. Darker shades tend to bring sadness rather than relaxation.

Another approach to blue is that it represents the mind. It promotes focus and allows employees to concentrate on their work without as many distractions. 


Yellow will brighten up any space and is an excellent choice for those in the creative field. Yellow highlights emotions and helps anyone in the office to feel happier. The brightness lifts employee’s moods and allows them to work more diligently. 

Extra bright shades of yellow may be hard on the eyes, so a softer shade or only a single wall may be the perfect highlight to the office.  


Green represents balance and if often represented in the financial industry. When most people think about green, they think about money. Money is a form of balance and reassurance, helping to keep stability in life. 

This colour has similar effects as blue as it is a secondary colour combination with blue with yellow. There is also a connection to creativity with the colour green. Jobs that require innovation and creative thinking will benefit from green on the walls of the office. 


It may seem counterintuitive to paint your office red but used in the right way it can energize the occupant. It is said that the colour red will get the heart pumping faster, and add energy to the room. 

Red is also the colour of anger and hostility, so it must be used with caution. If the office is painted entirely red, it could have a negative effect, but highlights in red could be beneficial. 


Pink is commonly used in prisons because it has been shown to calm aggressive behaviour. It can assist in de-escalating a situation. If you work in a place with the potential for aggressive behaviour, try painting your walls light to a medium shade of pink. 

While it may seem odd to paint a whole room pink, it can be easily done with the right decorations. Everything in the room does not have to be pink, and the more pink accents you add will only highlight the pink colour more. Let the pink walls fade into the background and let it do the work for you. 

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In most cases, white is clinical and associated with hospitals. A bright white will feel cold and unwelcoming, but an off-white can take the edge off. If you are not allowed to paint your office any of the other colours on this list, paint it an off-white. 

The added warmness to the colour will help detract from the coldness of the room, and it will increase your productivity more than a bright white room. 


Purple is considered to be regal and represents luxury. Dark purples are excellent as an accent colour, but walls should be a lighter shade of purple. Too much dark purple can lead to feelings of sadness and depression, but accents of it are perfect for feeling luxurious. 

Purple is a common favourite colour but not very common for office walls. Most of the other colours on this list have more benefits, but purple works well as a small accent. 


Brown is ubiquitous for walls in a professional setting, as it blends in, and it is not easily noticed. There are many shades of browns, including beiges, that work well as a background colour. Many shades of brown bring warmth to the room, and they will help make the room feel comfortable without being overbearing. 

If you have other office decorations that you want to feature, paint the walls brown, so the different colours pop. 


Grey is similar to brown as it creates a neutral backdrop for other accent pieces in your office. Be cautious when using grey as it can have depressing effects if used too much. A light grey can take away the harshness of the white walls and let the eyes rest. 

If used sparingly, the office can be a neutral backdrop for the furniture and decorations inside. If used throughout the whole office for a modern look, it can seem cold and unwelcoming. 

Office Paint Colours Will Affect Your Productivity

There is an argument for using every single colour you can imagine for the office walls, but be sure to get permission before you paint the whole building pink. Colour theory has many insights into the effect of colours on the human brain, and it is always evolving. 

Use bright colours sparingly as it can be overstimulating and can cause more problems. Muted tones and accent pieces are the perfect way to help your office be more productive. If you have a large office, consider using the pieces of furniture as a method of implementing colour theory as well. 

Don’t try to use all of the colours at once, as it will clash and have the opposite effects on the eyes. Stick to one or two colours that work well for your space and let those colours guide your office decor. 

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At Office Interiors, we strongly believe that it is our responsibility to provide our customers with answers and information they need to make an informed decision. We would love to have the opportunity to earn your business and help you to love the way you work!

This article is a guest contribution by:
Gabe Nelson
Omega Industries

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