Best Colors For Low Light Rooms 

April 28, 2021

Does your home have a windowless room or one that doesn’t see much sunlight throughout the day? Most of us have that one low light room that sits on the North-facing side of our homes that tend to be the darkest of all the interior rooms. These rooms receive slightly diffused, neutral light most of the day and year. 

Low light rooms create a unique issue for designers and painters alike. Choosing a color for the walls and ceiling in a room such as this can be challenging, but not impossible. Here are some things to consider when trying to make a choice in color palette and finish for your naturally low light rooms. 

bright sunny room

Natural Light Can Impact Paint Colors 

Both natural and artificial light can have a huge impact on the way that paint colors look on your walls. Natural light changes throughout the course of the day and can look vastly different from room-to-room, especially between rooms that are North-facing and those that have a Southern exposure.

For instance, rooms in your home that have the benefit of a Southern exposure have consistently bright light all day when the sun is out. While the brightness can create strong shadows, it also tends to render the colors accurately. Since the sun is highest in the sky in this orientation, lighter colors will glow while darker hues appear brighter.

Northern exposure rooms show off the colors by having a bluish or cool tone to them rather than the intensity that a Southern exposure gives off. 

shadowy light room

Popular Colors for Northern-facing Rooms 

Depending upon your preferences and design style in your home, you may want to choose colors for those lower light rooms based upon what they look like at different stages of the day. 

On one hand you may want to play up the cool and blush tones that a Northern exposure may present. Choose light blues, pale grays, or powdery yellows to show off the softness of the light in the room. 

On the other hand, many homeowners like to punch the colors up a notch in low light rooms to increase the brightness. For example, lavenders, plums, and oranges can really make a statement in a room that doesn’t get full light. 

Brightening Low Light Rooms 

If you are frustrated with a room that doesn’t seem to let in enough natural light, you may want to try some of these techniques to make the most of the light you do have. 

  • Remove heavy drapes that may be blocking the light. Instead use sheer curtains. 
  • Use a large mirror to reflect any available light. 
  • Adjust your artificial light to reflect off the ceiling. 
  • Use minimal furnishings to create an appearance of openness. 

Do you need help choosing a color palette that would look perfect in your low light room? Talk to our color specialists and get a free estimate to start your project this spring. 


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