My Top 5 Tips For Choosing The Right Paint Colour For Your Room

Some of the most asked questions I get are: ”What colour should I paint my room?” 


”How do I know if this paint colour is going to work?”


”I’m going for this particular style, how do I know which paint colour is going to work best?”

Among MANY more, but they are all around choosing the right paint colour and I fully understand why. Gone are the days when your selections were  (pretty much) off white, white and magnolia….slim pickings to say the least. Now if you dare to venture into any DIY stores or look online then you are met with aisle upon aisle of sophisticated colour pallets and just about every shade of white going!

Who knew paint companies could dream up a thousand ways to represent grey!


However, it is with ever increasing variety of colours, shades and tones, that those Instagram and Pinterest worthy interiors are possible. If you are wanting to create a specific look or feeling in your home, then  it starts with the paint colour on your wall.

Now don’t get me wrong I am not suggesting your strip your existing space and start again! But if your wanting to quickly re-fresh, or re-do your space this weekend. Then having a quick read of my top x5 tips for choosing the right paint colour. Will definitely get you choosing a better suited paint colour than perhaps you would have done before. Therefore giving you a much more desirable result! 

TIP:1 Get really clear on how you want the room to FEEL.

We all witness daily the use of colour psychology without even realising it. We know red is used as an alert system and green is used to represent nature and its calming/healing qualities. It’s no coincidence that hospitals are generally painted in cold whites to evoke feelings of cleanliness and create a clinical vibe. Whereas a spa sanctuary would be painted in warmer whites and softer colours to promote feelings of calm and tranquillity. Children’s play centres are often floor to ceiling mirage of primary colours as they are the first colours a baby sees and are stimulating and fun. The same psychology also applies to your home or room.


So get very clear about how you want your room to FEEL. This will narrow down your options for paint colours dramatically. It will also point you In the right direction as to whether or not you are wanting a cooler edgier tone or a more welcoming and warmer tone.


All important stuff to know BEFORE you go into any DIY or paint shop.

colour therapy wheel

Here are some basic examples:

A spare bedroom that is going to be used occasionally.  I would want to create a warm and friendly feeling, that is not too personalised or dramatic. Think a nice hotel room.


A living room that is going to be used by everyone in the family and visitors: Then I would want it to feel warm, friendly, inviting, and homely. Perhaps a little more updated but would still tie into the rest of the house.


A Home Office: Then I would want it to feel comfortable, but not distracting, light and airy perhaps.

It is entirely up to you, but once you get thinking about it, write everything down. Your going to need those words for the next step.



TIP: 2 Work out which way your room is facing:

This is such a necessary and easy step, but is so often overlooked. Which is a shame because taking the time to figure this out will save so much time, money, and stress in the long run. I have honestly lost count how many times I have heard the following:


‘’I chose this grey because it looked amazing in my friend’s bedroom, but it looks beige in my room!’’


‘’The room just feel so cold now I have painted it, even with all of the furniture back in, it just feels uninviting and miserable it must be the paint!’’

Errr nope, nothing wrong with the paint, you just might have applied it to the wrong room.


As we all know natural daylight effects the light in the room casting shadows and altering the paint colour at different times of the day. It can also saturate a paint colour – therefore stripping it entirely of its colour and creating a real washed out look. Or draw out different pigments….hence why sometimes that cool grey can actually look lilac!


my top 5 tips for choosing the right paint colour
If In doubt, just stand in the room on a sunny day and see when the light hits it. If there is paint already on the wall, make a note of what happens to the colour at different times of the day.
My Top 5 Tips for choosing the right paint colour for your room
Tip: 3 Take note of the style of the room.


Now, this step might not be that relevant for some, because the style of the room is already in place and you are just doing a refresh, but still have a read. Re-painting a room in the correct colour can give it a new lease of life and enhance or update the existing style/look. 


Nevertheless, if you are starting from scratch and have a blank canvas, then this step is important. Take note of the interior style you wanting to re-create and do your research.


Pinterest, Instagram even Google will spit out hundreds and hundreds of inspirations in your chosen style. Only save the ones you resonate with and take note of the colours. 


Now, my top tip here would be, to give yourself a set amount of time to do your research. Then come away.


Otherwise, what I see is clients confusing themselves, re-visiting their ideas again and again and not ever getting anywhere. It is a recipe for overwhelm and indecision. Not Helpful!

my top 5 tips for choosing the right paint colour
Remember: Its not just the paint colour that creates a room in a particular style. Furniture, accessories, window furnishings etc etc So don’t get too hung up on this step. Just being aware of the colours that are used to create that style is enough and will help set the foundations for creating the rest of the room.

Note: If your wanting help at al on mastering these popular interior design styles, then don’t forget to check out my blog:

 How to Decorate Your Room in The Most Popular Styles For 2021


But if your ready to go and want step by step instructions on what accessories to  buy, which paint colours to purchase, then hop on over to:

and grab my easy to follow style guide, that has everything laid out for you, so you can easily perfect these styles quickly and in your own home. 

Tip: 4 Pulling It All Together 

So by now, you should know how you want the room to feel and what side of the house it is on. Now let’s pull everything together.


Hopefully, if you have been keeping notes, you might have something written down that look like this:


Re-painting living room: & wanting a modern country feeling that is warm and inviting and homely. The room faces Southwest, so the room will receive natural light for most of the day but gets brighter and warmer in the evenings.


So I would be looking for a warm neutral, that has a cool undertone rather than a yellowy one. Think off whites, rather than beige.

Errrrr what! I hear you say.


Don’t panic this is where you can start to browse the many paint companies available and their websites. Nowadays most popular paint companies have amazing and very comprehensive blogs, visual aids, tools and great descriptions for their paints. So with the information, you have already narrowed down, along with your ideas you can easily find the right colour. Or at worst narrow it down to just a few choices.


For example, if I had decided I would like an off- white that is warm. I could go straight to their whites and read the descriptions. Or sometimes you could type ‘warm white’ in their search and it would come up with any blog, reference, marketing and paint colour that is considered a ‘warm white’ – perfect! 


It sure beats just grabbing a white off the shelf because it looks great on the tin, only to find it’s too yellow. Or worse still spend the whole weekend purchasing samples and being no closer to finding the right one come Sunday!

Tip 5: Samples and Feature Walls

Contrary to popular belief this tip should be one of the last things you do before purchasing any paint tins – Not the first!

Also, if you have done the previous steps, then this last bit should be straight forward and easy – as I mentioned above you should only have to be purchasing a few sample pots PER ROOM to trial.


Any more than 2 OR 3 then you need to really go back and read through the previous tips again.

sample paint on the walls
Paint your samples on an A4 piece of paper and stick to the wall with masking tape. That way you are not mixing the pigments of original paint work and new. If your going from dark to light. I would advise to do a base coat anyway.
Dulux blues
Once you have decided on your accent colour , paint them next to your main colour, again on a piece of paper. Just to check you are happy with how they look together in your space. Not just on the website.

Once you have figured out your main colour – then and ONLY then can you find complimenting or contrasting colours to work with for your accent or feature wall. If you try to pick everything at once, it can quickly become a bit of a mind field as each colour will play by its own rules.

Go back and look at the words you had written down when choosing your main colour. Warm, inviting, friendly For example. Then keep within the same zone (if you like) when choosing an accent or feature colour.


A really quick way to do this is to go back to those handy paint manufacturers websites again. Most of the major paint companies will give you examples of which colours work together, complement one another or contrast nicely together – depending on your chosen look.


All you have to do is choose one and if they do not come up with anything you like, at least you can see what type of colours do work and you can use that as a guide for choosing your own.

Paint combinations
But they will not choose your base colour for you – that’s up to you, but once you do know, this step is easy.

So these would be by 5 top tips for choosing the right paint colours for your room. Although it is not essential to do them in order- apart from tip 5 (always do last) I would recommend it, so you can start to get a really good idea of what is going to work and what isn’t as you work through each tip.


These tips are great to work through whether or not you already have colour ideas. They are there to help you narrow your choices, stop the overwhelm and prevent costly painting mistakes!!! Or worse still you spend a whole weekend painting and are still not satisfied with the result.


These tips are great for when you are tackling a few rooms or just the one. However, if you have a whole project, renovation or design project to select paint though, then perhaps consider purchasing my mini-course:


This is a step by step system guiding you through each step easily. It is jam-packed with tried and tested colour pallet for any direction of the room. Inspirational colours to help you create that all-important feeling, a free workbook to help you stay organised and to communicate with your tradespeople easier and not to mention the tons of tips, advice and little tricks of the trade. What’s great is that it is a system that I use with my clients and have done for years, so I know it works and can get you the results you desire. Without the headaches, stress, budget issues and painful mistakes 🙂


So good luck with your next re-fresh or design project and don’t forget to sign-up leave your details, so you will be alerted every time I release a new blog. Which you certainly don’t want to miss if you are knee-deep in DIY! 

Until next time

Debbie x

Ps: If you are wanting to do a complete refresh on your home/room or rooms and need a little guidance of system to follow. Then check out our mini-course:


‘’How to refresh your home on a budget’’


This course is perfect for anyone who wants to be able to refresh their space all within a weekend, but just needs some guidance, clear steps to follow and does not want to spend a small fortune!

Due to the incredible feedback we have been getting, we will be publishing more mini-courses soon, so keep checking back and I’ll keep you updated 🙂 

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