Blue bedroom scheme with white trim

Best paints for artificial light

In the dark months of winter and spring it is important to know how colours will work without natural light. Read our guide to find out what works best in each room.

Colour is simply visible wavelengths of light, so the quality of light in which a colour is seen affects it more than anything else. In the winter months, we rely on artificial lighting more than ever, so it’s important to know which colours work best in each room, and how they interact with your lighting. The Dulux team shares words of wisdom for getting colour and light right this season.  



Bedrooms need the lowest levels of artificial lighting, and it’s here that the dark works in our favor for restful nights. Dusky shades like Denim Drift, Heart Wood and West Coast Grey are soft and gentle, turning down the visual noise, while a deep, rich blue like Rich Navy creates the effect of a summer night.



The kitchen should be a visual feast in winter, when meals often take place when it’s dark outside. Overhead and LED lighting make cool, pale shades look washed out, so intensify the palette with hues such as Red Letter Day, Sandringham and Progressive Taupe. Think rich, warm and spicy.  



When it’s cold outside, it’s good to make it look and feel warm inside – particularly in the smallest rooms we use every day. Bathrooms suffer most from the winter blues if the colours and lighting are too harsh, so try softer downlights and muted shades like Crystal, Your Sanctuary and Egyptian Cotton on the walls and ceiling, with bright pops of colour in accessories. Deeper, richer shades, such as West Coast Grey and Heart Wood, create more grown-up, intimate spaces – perfect for the chillier months when a Nordic plunge pool is not your idea of bathtime relaxation! 

White bathroom with grey trim 

On mute 

Shut out the world with muted hues for a bathroom that can become your own private oasis. 

Living room  

“Lighting in a living room should be designed for rest and relaxation. Ditch overhead lights for layered floor and table lamps, together with the glow of firelight and the twinkle of fairy lights. Colours for the walls should be inspired by a combo of your own winter wardrobe and Mother Nature – cosy, mellow and warming – such as Spiced Honey, Natural Hessian and Progressive Taupe, to cocoon and comfort.”  



“Keeping concentration levels up when the days are short requires lighting and colours that focus the mind and revitalize, without being overpowering. Replace lightbulbs with ones that mimic natural daylight, and choose refreshing shades inspired by nature, like City Song and First Dawn. These will help you connect with the outdoors, making for healthier, happier working.” 

Home office with lavender walls

Work it 

Create a productive home office with colours that refresh and energize, without overpowering.