7 Colours to Wear When Feeling Stressed or AnxiousSep 08, 2022
Your body and mind react to the colours around you. Take brighter colours that stimulate our brains and make us feel energetic. However, they can also leave us feeling stressed or anxious because they can be overwhelming and overpowering. Let’s say red. It’s bold and bright, but it can be overstimulating, leaving you feeling anxious and stressed.
So when choosing colours to wear, you should think about how you’ll feel when you’re wearing them. In the same way, you should consider what colours to wear when feeling anxious or stressed. In the following, I’ve created a list of colour suggestions that you can wear when you’re feeling down, worried, or anxious.
Best Colours to Wear for Stress and Anxiety Relief
Blue is a well-liked cool colour that is calming and soothing. It’s peaceful and tranquil, from pastels to deeper tones. We tend to associate it with the colours of the seas and skies – and how peaceful we feel when we see them.
It’s one of the reasons that the classic colour is the go-to colour of women for their staple work outfits. Blue can also calm your busy mind. That’s why it’s also commonly chosen as a bedroom theme and colour because a lot of people tend to associate it with calmness and relaxation, too.
We associate green with the outdoors and nature in general – as it’s refreshing and soothing for the eyes. It’s in the spaces we frequent when we feel anxious or stressed, like our backyards, forests, and parks.
This is a quiet and restful colour that symbolises nature and is one of the most comforting colours that positively affect one’s mood. At work, green also motivates, boosts creativity, and invites a feeling of relaxation.
It can also attract harmonious feelings, resulting in calmness and diffusing anxiety. In the green family, I suggest pale-yellow greens and beige greens, the most stress-reducing shades among them.
- White or cream
Either of them represents feelings of peace, quiet, and tranquillity. It can be both calming and soothing, as it looks clean, reducing any clutter in your mind and soothing your senses.
Wearing white clothes can help you think clearly because it clears up your mind, especially while working.
It’s quite interesting to know, though, that white can create different reactions based on the version chosen. For example, too bright white can stress you more, and it looks too clinical. Avoid stark white shades and darker-based whites.
Stick with creamy and warmer whites to experience white’s calming and pure effect to help you feel less chaotic and stressed.
Believe it or not, it can put you in a positive state and can relieve stress because it inspires a sunny and cheerful attitude.
It can greatly improve your mood, make you feel good about life in general and leave you feeling blissful. Leatrice Eiseman, an American colour specialist, in an interview with CNN, revealed that “sometimes people who are very metaphysical will see enlightenment” when looking at yellow.
The reason for this is that it stimulates the release of our natural stress reliever – the endorphins - because it’s vibrant, bright, and optimistic.
Style tip: Make this colour pop! Pair it with grey, white, or black.
This is another colour to wear when you’re feeling anxious or stressed. It can encourage feelings of love and compassion. In fact, Feng Shui believes that it’s the perfect colour for filling your heart with love and your body with soothing energy.
For the best results, choose light and soft shades of pink, which are associated with empathy and tenderness. Soft pastels can also fill your mood with calmness and peace.
Avoid brighter tones that might overwhelm and stimulate you because they’re added with too much red.
This colour has a blue base, making it calming and relaxing. When wearing violet, opt for softer shades without too much black in it, soft violet, or lilac.
Stay away from bright shades and deep purples because they can be stimulating, powerful, or invigorating. Choose violets of blue bases for a calming effect or one belonging to the pastel side because it doesn’t have too much black in its base.
This entry might surprise you because it can come across as boring and dull, so some people might think that it’s a bit depressing. Think of cloudy days when you could be feeling a bit low. But little it’s been discussed that grey can be relaxing and calming. It’s a neutral colour that also blends well with almost any colour.
Choose brown-based greys that can rather be calming and blue-based ones that also have the same effect, giving you feelings of comfort and optimism. Avoid dark shades of grey and those with deep bases because they might induce restlessness in you.
So, can colours help relieve stress and anxiety? Yes. Wearing certain colours may change your perspective and shift your mood. Think of job interviews when people could feel really anxious. The colours above may invoke feelings of calmness, relaxation, peace, and tranquillity and boost one’s mood.
Now, if you’re thinking about the colours to wear to make you feel less anxious and stressed, there is no specific answer. What you need is to play with colours and find the right combination that gives you positive feelings.
Once you’ve figured that out, you can use it to work on your outfit choices. Take green as an example. If its shades promote feelings of calmness and tranquillity, add a green shirt, pair of socks, or cardigan to your outfit ensemble.
Changes don’t have to be done overnight, but you can work on an outfit makeover gradually until you come up with the perfect colour combination in your wardrobe.
So with everything being said, what colours to wear depends on your feelings. Take note of the colours that make you feel good and those that make you feel bad – or those that trigger negative feelings due to associations and past experiences.
I hope you've found the tips given in this blog post useful and you now know the colours to wear to combat stress and anxiety. Would you like to learn the art of wearing colours stylishly and how to use colours to support your lifestyle? Check out my e-course Radiate in Your Essence Colour and learn how to bring colours into your wardrobe. Click here to find out more.
References & citation:
Kwallek, N., Lewis, C. M., & Robbins, A. S. (1988). Effects of Office Interior Color on Workers’ Mood and Productivity. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 66(1), 123–128. https://doi.org/10.2466/pms.19188.8.131.52
Jacobs, K. W., & Hustmyer, F. E. (1974). Effects of Four Psychological Primary Colors on GSR, Heart Rate and Respiration Rate. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 38(3), 763–766. https://doi.org/10.2466/pms.19184.108.40.2063
Birren, F. (1991, January 16). Color and Human Response: Aspects of Light and Color Bearing on the Reactions of Living Things and the Welfare of Human Beings. Wiley.