9 Ways To Make Your Dull Living Room Bright

The most commonly used room in the house is the living room. It is a place for relaxation and socializing. A dull living room imparts a depressing feeling. While a cheery and bright area conveys a positive atmosphere. If you are not satisfied with your present décor, there are ways and means that you can do to enhance your interior to make it brighter and livelier. Below are ways on how to make your dull living room bright.

1. Paint the Living Room White

There are some good ways to bring a breezy start to your home’s interior one is by painting it white. You can apply this clean-slate strategy as soon as you transferred from your newly-purchased home. But for those who just want to change the color of their living room, you can still apply this color. Before painting the living room white there are things that you need to consider:

  • Take into account the natural light source. Before you paint the room white, it is best to identify its orientation first. If your living room gets gray-blue light during noonday, you can paint white it white to optimize the area as you keep things cool.
  • Make sure that the outside environment complements your white paint.
  • If you don’t have a collection of art or a breathtaking view, you can paint the living room white.
  • If you have an interior with Greek design, you can still paint your living room white. But you need to pair it with a saturated color like the midcentury modern home.
  • If you want to make your living room look bigger, using white paint will help expand the spaces.

White serves as an amazing reflecting agent. So, if you prefer a brighter room consider painting the ceiling and walls of your living room white. Dark-colored walls and ceiling will make the room duller in appearance. You can add lighter colors aside from white to brighten your living room. Paint your ceiling white and lighter colors on your wall. That would be enough to make a dramatic difference to the room.

2. Add Vibrant Colors to your Living Room

You can brighten your dull living room by adding vibrant colors on it. It is not actually painting the room with vibrant colors. You can add colorful materials on it to make the room alive. The colors you add in your living room will reflect your personality. Room color can influence your moods and the way you think. Color affects the room in several ways, depending on gender, climate, age and ethnic background.

Photo: wolfleys.com

Some colors tend to get the same reaction from many people. The differences come from the tones or shades used. Colors act in 3 fundamental ways – neutral, passive and active. To help you decide which color to add in your living room below are some colors and learn what they can do.

  • Red can boost the living room’s energy level. It is known as the most intense color, it pumps your adrenaline. The color attracts people together and stimulates conversation.
  • Yellow takes the joy of sunshine and conveys happiness. This is a welcoming color, uplifts and energizes.
  • Blue can bring down blood pressure and slows down heart rate and respiration. It provides a relaxing, serene and a calm feeling.
  • Green is a restful color for the eye. If you combine refreshing blue and cheerful yellow, you will get a cool green that will promote comfort and togetherness.
  • Orange promotes enthusiasm and excitement. It is also one of the energetic colors. In ancient cultures, orange is known to heal the lungs and boost energy levels.
  • Neutral colors – black, white, brown, and gray are the basic colors in designing your living room. These colors never fall out of fashion. Add these colors to brighten up the room.

To brighten up your living room you can add colores in a generous amount. You can paint the walls using bright vivid colors or you can paint the room using different colors that will complement each other. You can also use reflective wallpaper in your walls to reflect the light falling on it and make the room brighter. Instead of painting, you can also add some colorful décor items, multicolored cushion or add a vibrant rug and see what it can do to your room.

3. Natural Lighting

There is nothing you can do to increase the amount of sunlight that enters your living room – unless you have plans for remodeling your home. However, if you are low in natural light, there are some small things that you can do to add natural lighting in your living room. Here are ways to maximize existing natural light in your living room:

  • Position a mirror on a wall opposite or adjacent to a window. If placed next to a window, it will mimic the window and it makes look like you have more windows in the wall. If positioned opposite, it will reflect light and background from the window.
  • Allow the light in. Do not use light-blocking window treatments. Use translucent window treatments that provide privacy but still allowing enough light to enter the room.
  • Paint the ceilings a little lighter than walls. If your walls are white, it is best to use flat white in your ceilings. For dark walls, use slightly lighter color on the ceiling.
  • Keep the bulbs, windows, and fixtures clean it will allow the light to shine the brightest.

This is one of the easiest and the best way to brighten up your living room. Try using natural lighting to the extreme. The best way to use natural light is by adding huge windows to the living room area. Another way is to remove heavy curtains in the living room and then use lighter variants instead to allow natural light to get through.

4. Add the Right Shape of Mirrors at the Right Position

Photo: houzz.com

Mirrors are very effective in making the living room bright and relaxing. A well-positioned mirror makes the most of the room’s natural light, opens a small space, enhances the views and adds liveliness to décor. To make adding mirror effective in making your living room bright and energized, you should choose the right mirror and position it into the right location. Here are some tips on where to position the mirrors and what shape of the mirror to choose.

  • Position a whole-body mirror between two windows. It may look like that there is a third window there and it maximizes natural light. This will also impart a relaxing mood into the room.
  • Place a narrow mirror in between artworks. The key lies in how you arrange the frames around the mirror. The frames should have the same sizes and should be equally positioned.
  • Use a sunburst mirror on top of a console. If your console table needs some spicing up adding a mirror on top of it will uplift the whole arrangement.
  • Place mirrors on two adjacent walls. This will bounce the light around the entire room. Be careful, as the multiple reflections can be dizzying.

Mirrors can help brighten the living room. It reflects the light and makes the room look bigger and brighter than before. You should position the mirrors strategically to reflect the rays of the sunlight during the day and reflect the light coming from the artificial light during the night. Even a wall mirror or a floor to ceiling mirror can help brighten up the living room considerably.

5. Keep your Living Room Clutter-Free

The cluttered living room can cause stress and present environmental dilemmas. If you add too much furniture and decorations into your living room it can create an atmosphere of darkness. To brighten your room the first step that you should do is to de-clutter the area as much as you can and remove the non-essential stuff. You can use a wall mounted shelving to place your decors. This will not just clear up the spaces but eliminate the shadows caused by your furniture as well. Keeping your living room clutter free:

Use baskets to keep your things organized.

  • Use baskets and central wooden drawer to keep the stuff you need every day in one place.
  • Use a tray to stack the magazines. You can use a round woven tray that mimics the texture of the baskets.
  • Place the remotes in a kitchen caddy.
  • Keep toys in an easy to reach built-in basket.
  • In a second built-in basket, you stash your multimedia things like DVDs. This will make it easier for you to reach them when you need them.

Keep clutter away with colorful storage boxes. Keep your things organize in the living room. Place all the remote controls in one box, then the magazines in another box, and other things you use every day in another box. Use colorful boxes and place them somewhere that will add color in your room.

6. Arrange the Furniture Accordingly

How you arrange the furniture in your living room can affect the brightness of the area. If most of your furniture has a darker shade and denser form, your room might look and feel dark. Therefore, the first thing that you need to do is to avoid dark colored furniture like black and dark brown. Invest in lighter color furniture like white and tan. If in case you have dark-colored furniture and you don’t want to throw them, you can still brighten them by adding some elements in lighter color or white to make the area look brighter. Here are some tips on arranging the furniture in your living room:

  • Use visually lightweight furniture. This refers not just to the size but the color as well. The light colored furniture with legs looks lighter than dark upholstered pieces. The leggy chair does not obstruct views of the passage thus the space feels more open.
  • Use neutral color furniture. This is one of the best ways to make the room looks wider and brighter. The eye can easily roam around through a neutral palette, thus making the area looks spacious and wide.
  • Highlight the vertical. A living room space always includes not just the horizontal dimensions. Make the eyes move around the area. To highlight the vertical dimensions place draperies that hang just below the ceiling beams.
  • Choose the right size of furniture. If you have a small living room use sleek design and small scale furniture. The armless chair may look heftier, but the shape and lines won’t make the small room look crowded.

7. Get Rid of Extra Walls (Surprised?)

Photo: housetohome.co.uk

If it is possible to break down a wall and install a window or door then you should go for it. But first, you need to check on how long you will be staying in that particular house. If you will be staying for longer in that house then it is best to consider this idea. After breaking down the wall, you can install a glass door or a large French window on it. This will enable light to pass through it and will brighten up the area. If it is not possible to remove the wall, below are some tips that you can apply to make use of it.

  • Using Statement Wallpaper. In one of the feature wall in your living room add statement wallpaper on it. But make sure you will not overpower the space. You can use patterned wall paper behind your sofa to frame it as the main feature of your living room. Pick a design that picks out the colors of your accessories or furniture to help complement the design together.
  • Add Unique Frames on the Bare Wall. Collect unique frames, with different sizes, colors, and designs. Arrange the frames attractively on the bare wall in your living room. You will be happy with what you see. It adds color and brightness in the area.

8. Add Bright Accessories

Photo: waplag.net

Decors and accessories also play a vital role in making your living room bright and relaxing. If you use darker frames on the walls or your decors have dull colors then your efforts of brightening up the area will go in vain. The best thing you can do is to change some of your decors and accessories with bright and happy colors and see the difference it makes to your living room. Here are some ideas that can help you out:

  • The Palette. Since spring is fast approaching the perfect color for your living room would be a combination of pastel shades with deeper tones. Mustard yellow with a shade of emerald green decors is a good one. To calm the brightness down and soften the effect of the room, you can add pale pink accessories. Layering the colors with pictures, accessories and fabrics helps pull them together to create a harmonious look.
  • Add Vibrant Colored Pillows. This will transform the entire room’s interior and will provide a bold color statement. There are several ways you can add a pop of color in your living room using these lovely, bright throw pillows. If you have a solid tan couch, you can add yellow, brown and green decorative throw pillows to brighten it up. If you have a small seating chair, you can add a large gold decorative pillow to accentuate it. You can also use throw pillows with rainbow hues, especially if you have an all-white living room.
  • Use Sheer Curtains. If you want your view reflects on your living room and at the same time keep your privacy, you can use sheer curtains. This type of curtain is made for ultramodern, light-colored interiors as the fabric is also transparent and provides a minimalist look.
  • Add Colorful Rugs. To add color and brighten up your living room, lay a statement rug. In choosing the perfect rug for your living room, you need to consider the following:

· The pattern or shade that will complement your interior.

· Your budget.

· The size.

· Furniture placement and other accessories.

​9. Reflective Flooring

Photo: jamieoskin.com

Reflective flooring can help increase the natural lighting in your living room. The ceiling occupies the maximum area in your room, and then followed by the flooring. Thus, it is important that you also give attention to it. What you choose for your flooring will have a great impact on the overall look of the room. There are two types of reflective flooring, the white tiled flooring and the hardwood flooring. An example of white tiled material is marble. It will provide a lighter shade and will add brightness to your room.


If you are tired of your dull, cramped and dark living room which makes you feel like you are in a cave, it is time to make that change. Hope these helpful tips will help you transform your living room. Our main goal in providing these ideas is to provide a solution for your dull and dark living room problem. You can leave a comment below if you find the ideas mentioned in this article useful, or if you have some questions.

About the Author Michael L. Mackey

Hi there, I'm Michael L. Mackey. I'm a certified home improvement enthusiast who has a knack for tinkering around the house and constantly upgrading my home to meet the current trends, standards, and style that is up to par with our modern way of living.

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