1. Keep things cool
Cooler colors help walls to recede, making the room feel more spacious and light. Go for pale shades of grey and blue for best results.
For maximum effect, choose a paint from our Light + Space range, which reflects light back into the room to make it feel even airier.
LN.02.77 / 94GY 66/038
ON.00.81 / 08GG 72/006
2. Bring the sunshine inside
If it’s warmth you’re after, don't be afraid to use light terracotta or yellows – a sunny hue can brighten and warm a dark, dingy space. Just be careful not to clutter the room with dark furniture so the scheme doesn’t become overpowering.
F3.03.88 / 35YY 88/050
F1.35.65 / 21YY 45/405
F3.24.75 / 28YY 62/321
3. Paint your ceilings pale
The aim is to make the room appear larger and lighter, so avoid dark colors on the ceiling. White is always a safe choice, but you could also go for pale tones of other colors, from greens to golds.
E4.05.55 / 02YY 32/054
SN.02.67 / 95BG 49/025
ON.00.58 / 53BB 36/004
4. Reflect the light you have
In dark rooms you have to make the most of the little light you get. Opting for paint with a glossy finish is a great way to reflect light back into the space, making it feel brighter. Plaster pink tones work particularly well for this. To find out more about how light affects colors, read this article.
FN.02.82 / 98YR 78/041
5. Don’t forget the details
Paint architraves, skirting boards and any other moldings in light reflective colors, perhaps in a subtly contrasting tone to the color on the walls. This will give some structure to the room without detracting from its brightness.
J2.04.59 / 37GY 38/050
HN.02.83 / 89YY 80/090
To help shed some light on stubborn dark corners, try furniture that is either mirrored or painted in light colors. Styling with carefully placed lamps and mirrors will also help make the room feel more welcoming and uplifting by illuminating spaces and bouncing the light around.
When thinking about decorating ideas, use our Visualizer app to see how colors will look on your walls.