Banish that ‘Winter Blues’ feeling through colour and light

Karen Haller 01
Karen Haller

Sponsored by Philips Hue

Are you someone who suffers from the ‘Winter blues’? You know, that post-Christmas, back to work, missing the sunshine, and feeling generally flat kind of blues. Well, it seems you’re not alone.

Philips Hue recently conducted a study of 2,000 adults which found six in 10 Brits believe they suffer from the ‘Winter Blues’, with more than half attributing their negative state of mind to a lack of sunlight. Two thirds of those polled agreed that good weather helps lift their mood, with bright lighting and colourful rooms both helping to boost people’s moods.

So it would appear we really don’t like being kept in the dark.

Winter can be a time that we find dull and bleak. For the most part it’s cold, rainy and dark. Lighting is not only used to show us the way, it also plays an important role when it comes to our biological functions.

If we have light, we also have colour.

I was delighted when Philips Hue asked me to team up with them to create some “light recipes” to help lift us out of the “Winter blue” feeling. By creating some positive, feel-good, mood enhancing light recipes, including one to “Spring Forward”, a soft grass green promoting new beginnings, we have worked to pick the perfect colours to put a spring in your step.

The psychology of colour
Colour goes beyond being just a visual aid or simply decoration, it creates an emotive experience. It has this incredible power to influence how we think, feel and behave in an instant. So even if there is a lack of light and colour outside, we can create the perfect conditions inside by choosing the colours we want to be surrounded by to help support how we are feeling or want to feel.

The feel-good light recipes I created, include the positive feelings of

  • Balance – dark green
  • Boost – red
  • Mindfulness – purple
  • Cosy – soft pink
  • Togetherness – orange
  • Clarity – orange
  • Uplift – yellow

And even one for when you’ve had a big night out and found yourself with a hangover, which we called Hangfree.

There are days when I have deadlines to meet and all I want to do is sit quietly and reconnect back to nature to give me a sense of peace, so I’ll go for Balance, a deep nourishing forest green. Other times when I need to be mentally alert, I’ll go for Clarity, a lovely sky blue.

Make it Personal
The great thing about the Philips Hue smart lighting system is with the colour picker in the Philips Hue app, you can select any colour you like to match how you are feeling, or want to feel, which will be child’s play, given there’s a whopping 16 million colours to choose from to transform your space.

Choose the perfect colour to suit your mood and set your light either in a lamp or overhead fitting, depending on what feels right for you. Given the large range of colour to pick from, the colour recipes I have created are a great place to start, whether you want to be bathed in the light or just to have it as an accent.

What coloured light do you feel like right now?

To find out more about the Philips Hue smart lighting system and my feel-good colour recipes, all you need to do is pop over to

All images courtesy of Philips Hue

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