Dear Kid,

There is more to color than meets the eye.

Partly that’s because (according to scientists) color doesn’t exist—the concept of colors is all in our fabulous brains. Never mind that we all see the same thing—it isn’t there. Whatever.

Turns out that (nonexistent) colors have a huge impact on us.

What's Your Color? DearKidLoveMom.comWe all know that walking into a room with color we like makes us feel better. We also know that most moms will not paint their teenager’s room black. This conflict may be the source of all teenage angst.

Red is an interesting color. It tends to make people eat more (so do yellow and orange) which makes it a fabulous color for restaurants hoping to get us to order dessert. It was trés trendy to paint dining rooms red for a while. Red is not the official color of Weight Watchers.

Red can also increase muscle reaction time, raise your blood pressure, and make you want to gamble more. Guess what the predominant color in most casinos is?

You can celebrate a red-letter day, see red when you’re angry, or red-shirt a freshman. You can be distracted by a red-herring, take a red-eye flight across the country, or find your business in the red (none of which are great things).

Yellow is a harsh color (I did not make that up) and should never be used in a baby’s room because studies have shown babies cry more in yellow rooms. Yellow can also make people nauseous which is why designers don’t use yellow on airplanes.

Green can increase concentration. I’d suggest you go study on a nice lawn somewhere but the distractions probably outweigh the green. Which it is not easy to be.

Pink is (officially) a soothing color and is therefore used on walls in mental facilities and prisons (except where they use a horrid shade of green). Some sports teams paint the visitors’ locker room pink in the hopes that it will dissipate some of their energy and enthusiasm. Pink is also the color Pepto Bismol which some people find soothing to their tummies.

Purple is the color of royalty and 7th grade girls.

Blue conveys trust, reliability, and loyalty (which is why people wear blue suits to a job interview—think “true blue”). Studies have shown that blue is calm and peaceful and can help people be more productive. Weightlifters are able to handle heavier weights in blue gyms. And if you’re feeling blue you can listen to the blues.

Wishing you just the right shade of today.

Love, Mom