It’s that time of year again! The time of year for spring cleaning and maybe repainting a room, or two, since you’re rearranging everything, anyway. Or maybe you’re thinking of replacing a few items in your closet that’s starting to look a tad shabby. Maybe you want to start a new project and just don’t know which gemstone you should go with.


What color do you choose?

May I suggest green?

Green is associated with spring and nature, making it quite timely, but that’s not why. Green is an interesting color both physiologically and psychologically because of our eyes.

How we see green

We see through our eyes and the use of rods and cones. The rods determine only how much light there is, telling the brain “Oh, it’s dark in here” or “Wow that’s bright”. They’re what let us see in the dark because they’re reacting to the total amount of light. The cones are a little bit trickier to explain. There are three types: red, green, and blue. They react to the type of light in a room, so if there’s a lot of red light the red cones react. The red cones are the most abundant in our eyes, probably because of just how many shades of red there are in nature. Being able to tell the difference between on red berry that will kill you v. a slightly darker red berry that is delicious is a very good skill to have without the benefit of a grocery store.

The blue cones react to blue light and are the second most abundant, leaving green cones as the least common and only reacting to green light. Only, that’s not completely accurate. If you think way back to that one physics class, you’ll remember that light is a wave, with different colors having different wavelengths; reds have the longest wavelengths and blues have the shortest. The red cones in our eyes react to red, yes, but they also react to orange, yellow, and some green colors. The blue cones react to some green colors, and that’s about it. The green cones reaction to yellows and blues, as well as all those green shades. This is why white light can wash out colors, they’re all present so all the cones are reacting in similar ways, overloading our brain.

This is where green comes in.

Green light is a blend of yellow, green, and blue depending on the specific color. These colors have all the cones in our eyes react, red cones to the yellow shades and blue cones to the bluer ones. In contrast with white, this green shade doesn’t completely overwhelm the eye, so green can actually have a physical effect on us. The color green can make us relax even if we don’t realize it.

How green makes us feel

So, the color green can physically relax our eyeballs, relaxing our minds just the teensiest bit. How does that translate to feelings?

The color green, either as light or as a painted wall, can have an effect on our sleeping patterns. Blues and greens help the brain figure out when it’s time to sleep, and is part of the reason you should leave your phone alone when you’re trying to do just that. This bleeds into how we feel by, again, making us feel relaxed and calmer just by looking at it.

There’s also the cultural influence of green. Green is the color of nature, a source of comfort and calm for a large number of people. It’s also the color of youth and growth, making it a fantastic color for a bedroom for any age. It’s a color associated with innovation, luck, and money, making it a great color for an office or anywhere you work. Green is also the color of health, so use it to paint your kitchen. Maybe that’ll help with eating more leafy greens.

Actually, just make everything green. You can thank me later.

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