Colour Sensitivity – What is It and What Can You Do About It?

pinky purple

Colour sensitivity is an unexplained reaction to some or all colours.

Any of these symptoms can be experienced as a result of colour sensitivity.

Symptoms

Tension in your shoulders / upper chest

Eye strain / Watery, Gritty feeling in eyes

Buzzy feeling in your head

Headache under / above your eyes

Pains in your face / jaw

Tightness in your chest

Weakness / heavy feeling in your arms and legs

Knotted spasmy feeling in your gut

Sugar / Carbohydrate cravings

Feel over-stimulated / Agitated

Nervousness / Anxiety

Feeling light headed /dizzy

Shiveriness

Temperature regulation problems

Low Mood / Hyper mood

Fatigue

Disturbed sleep (night panics)

Visual Problems

Tracking / Stereoscopic vision problems

Discomfort with some colours and coloured lights (appearing washed out or too bright)

Depth perception problems

Difficulty with bright light /glare

 

My Colour Story

I get up in the morning and the first thing I do is look out of the window.  I want to see what colour the light is.

Next I dress according to the light. I often wear bright white next to my skin on my top half  because this feels calm and neutral but it still has life in it to me. Then over this I wear a warm white top which still has life but isn’t too reflective. Sometimes I wear more bright white but only on days where I am looking for a bit more reflection.

I do wear colour (beyond white) too but this is more complicated!  I have created a chart that lets me know what the colours are on my personal spectrum (ones that resonate with me) and also recorded are how the different coloured lights affects these colours. For instance I might wear a red top on a green light day or a pinky purple top on a blue light day.

Once I am dressed, I turn on my computer and turn my attention to finding the right coloured virtual overlay for the day.  I essentially move from needing more reddy pink in the winter to more bluey pink in the summer.

And then I choose my activity for the day. The long wavelengths of winter  make me feel more homely and like doing more cosy things. The mid wavelengths which I experience a lot in spring and autumn make me feel expansive and creative but in an inward sort of way. The short wavelengths of summer make me feel energized. When there is more violet light I feel more expansive to the point that I can flit around from idea to idea. When the light is more blue I feel more calm and find it easier to stay focused. Blue light also makes me feel my most sensitive and all my sensitivities seem heightened on blue light days.

The Colours of the Spectrum

Red

In dawn, dusk, autumn and winter there is more red light in the atmosphere.  I always feel better when there is more red light. In the autumn and winter I even add some red light placing a red lamp behind my computer and using a red lamp at night. I like to eat from plates with red rims and eat plenty of red food like red peppers and tomatoes.

For me red is a grounding colour and I like to have some red around me in our home. I have red shoes and a red coat to wear sometimes in the winter. And I like to wear red tops on days when there is more green light.

Orange

Orange is a colour that doesn’t really resonate with me. I like to see orange around me in some paintings in my home. I also notice orange in road signs and road markings when I am driving. I wouldn’t choose to wear orange or make it a big feature colour.

As with the red light, there is more orange light around in the winter.  In December and January where there is less blue light, the orange light can seem quite heavy. For me it changes the colours of the reds and golds of the Christmas tree decorations and this year I opted for white ones!  Later in the spring around the end of March, beginning of April, the orange light feels less dense. I find it adds another dimension to other colours such as violet and blue, making them softer.  I am happy eating golden food like roast chicken and yellow rice as long as it is a golden yellow (but not at the same time).

Yellow

Yellow light tends to be around in the autumn and early spring. It makes the lighter wood in our home look a bit ‘wrong’ for me and shows up the pattern on our kitchen floor to the point where it looks sort of 3D. It ‘knocks out’ the blues and greens but is a good friend to my pale violet trousers!

Like orange, yellow isn’t a colour that really resonates with me. However I like having a little yellow around me. This is usually in artwork where the yellow has more life than when it is just in a block of colour that is all the same density. I don’t choose to wear yellow (interestingly my school uniform dress was yellow!) I am drawn to yellow when I am out driving as so many signs are yellow and in October this becomes an intense golden yellow colour.  This can be pleasant in short bursts but unpleasant if there is a lot of yellow.

Green

Green light is around mostly in the summer and a little in the Autumn. There is more green when the leaves are on the trees. For me the colour it affects the most is black. I have to get used to seeing green in the black of my computer and my hairdryer and phone etc.

Green falls into two significant colours for me – yellowy green and bluey green. I see these around me in nature all the time and also they are the colour of lots of vegetables. Violet and orange light can enhance the green, whereas indigo light can make it look too dark and a ‘strange’ colour. Blue light can drain green and yellow light make it look too yellowy. Grass is an ever changing colour for me. I don’t choose to wear green and similar to  yellow and orange, only have a little green in our home and that is in artwork.

Blue

Blue is a colour that I like to see around me but I only wear in the summer. I ask my husband to wear various shades of blue quite a lot! The shades I like either have slight pink in them or slight green (as in turquoise.) I love to gaze into blue skies and water and I tend to be drawn into blue.

There is more blue light at midday and in the summer.  When there is the right amount of blue light colours look their best to me. They look like they are being their ‘true’ colour.  I particularly experience this at mid summer on sunny days. Too much blue light can drain colour though and give me a lonely feeling. I find that all my other sensitivities are heightened when there is a predominance of blue light.

Indigo

Indigo isn’t a colour that really resonates with me. I think I like it but then I find it too dark. I have used it in paintings, I think to convey depth. It can give me a headache and difficulty concentrating.

Indigo light is around in the winter months and on some days through spring. Indigo light seems heavy and dark to me. It as if it stops the colours singing. Everything feels a bit lifeless and my mood goes down. Indigo light is usually around on cloudy days. Because it pulls colours down it is hard for me to want to engage with colour when the indigo light is around. It also affects my relationship with music. I may not feel inspired to pick up an instrument because of the colour of the instrument and also the sound will seem as lifeless as the colour to me.

Violet

Violet falls into two shades on my spectrum, – pinky purple and bluey pinky purple! Pinky purple is my favourite colour in the summer. It seems to stand up to the green light. I wear it in the summer and sometimes in the autumn and winter too. I have a bluey pinky purple fleece and I probably wouldn’t buy a fleece of any other colour! I also love eating purple food, having a particular taste for beetroot.

The violet light feels full of energy to me. It seems to first really appear in mid February. I have a real spring in my step in this light. The colours are softer if there are some medium frequency lightwaves around as well, especially orange. The violet light really changes the colour of the grass.

Conclusion . . .

Before I carried out this investigation into my reaction to colour I thought I just had an extreme sensitivity to bright light and didn’t like some colours and some colour combinations. My investigation though has opened up a whole new world for me. My relationship with colour and light has been totally transformed. I look forward to seeing the coloured light every day and how it dances with the colours now. When there feels like an imbalance in the blue light I have some glasses to wear (just basic inexpensive blue blocking glasses) I have some to help more with blue, some for violet and some to help just with UV light.

I don’t wear glasses every day. I have watch the light and act accordingly

Whether I am wearing tinted glasses or not, one thing is certain –  I am always embracing my relationship with light!

My Facebook Group – Colour Sensitivity.  Please join  and share your story. Or leave a comment on this post. Thanks 🙂

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