Do Paint Companies Deceive You With Their Color Displays?


The average paint company is aware that their most effective advertising is actually done inside of the paint store. The paint color display a brand showcases is its best possible instrument to attract would-be customers to their product. If you wonder, how is it that a paint company can lure you to their brand using their color chart - and cause you to pick the wrong color - read on.

For many years, advertisers have learned to use bright, bold colors that focus the attention of would-be customers on their brand. The unmistakable power of a bright color is seen in logo, signs and every form of commercial marketing. This little tidbit is common knowledge, yet it often comes as a surprise to many that paint companies do use the very same tactics to pull your attention to their specific line of paint colors while you are perusing inside home improvement centers.

It can be said that paint companies are a bit sneakier than your traditional marketers. Paint brand companies are aware that when you are faced with a selection of paint displays (as is often the case in your home improvement stores), you are likely to first give your attention to the section of the display that is most appealing to the eye.

Obviously, the marketers of paint brands comprehend the human (or “animal”) attraction to bright colors. The marketers understand how important it is for their display to include bold, bright colors in their paint lines and to place them up front in their merchandising displays. This is the best way to grab the customer’s attention.

You may wonder, just how does a paint company accomplish this magic trick of color hypnosis on customers? It begins very simply with a sample card. Perhaps you have noticed how the brightest color card samples are the first row of the paint display.
You likely realize that this is not done by coincidence. Paint companies choose to play with a loaded deck (of sample cards)!
There is absolutely nothing wrong with the notion of stacking sample cards in a color wheel that will display the most beautiful colors as the most visible. The problem becomes apparent when you realize that many of those dramatic “striking” colors are essentially useless as actual wall paint colors! It’s almost comical that many of the colors a paint company places in its line would actually never look good when painted on any wall. The display colors are one hundred percent, used to pull your attention.

People are helpless in being attracted to bright colors; bright colors are much more eye-catching and therefore much more exciting to our brains. It’s a little sad that people who are paint beginners are much more likely to discover one of these bright, bold, saturated colors to be the most attractive and eventually end up choosing one of these as their new decorating color. It is a sad case when this happens because for most of the reasons just discussed, these types of colors look bad when painted on walls.

In fairness, when brighter colors are used to paint smaller surfaces, or as an accent color, on trim, or on a small wall, etc, these colors can be far less offensive. As a rule of thumb though, most bright colors in the display will on rare opportunity work.
In the case of the companies themselves, when problems like this occur, the companies don’t have anything to lose. If a person chooses a paint color that they are not satisfied with, the paint company is not responsible to refund the customer. There is not a paint brand in the country that will allow a customer to return paint once it has been purchased. If the customer is dissatisfied with the paint color they purchased, the customer will likely buy new paint!

There are confusing factors that make it difficult to choose the paint colors that will end up looking the best. Rather than enduring a world full of unhappy customers, the paint companies offer the market a basic solution to their issue of conflicting interests. The solution that has been found is the designer, or the “signature” brand. Most paint companies now offer a Signature brand to accommodate their primary brand.

For example, Valspar Paint produces paints branded as Eddie Bauer, Laura Ashley, Waverly, and others. These collections, or separate lines, each have their own specific color wheel displays and are typically available wherever the primary brand is sold. Other examples of this can be seen with Disney Paints that are made by Behr. Ralph Lauren and Martha Stewart are two examples as they were once made by Sherwin Williams.

Paint companies and retailers are savvy. They take opportunity of the popularity of these brands, in order to attract buyers to these paints; by doing so, they do not have to use overly obnoxious colors to grab your attention. If you take a look at the colors in these displays, you will notice that as a general rule, they are missing the bright tones. Most of the colors are neutralized. These are colors that are naturally more aesthetically pleasing.

Using a paint from a designer collection is a way to go it you are worried about ending up with an unattractive color. It may be the case that the range of colors offered by any of these brands may be limited and the whole line of hues is somewhat neutralized. This kind of display will give the smaller brand a more consistent look. But keep in mind that these signature paints are often pricier in spite of the fact that you can obtain very similar colors from the principal brand for much less.

Want a shortcut to the best paint colors from Sherwin Williams palettes? See the most popular interior paint colors (a.k.a. the Paint Color Cheat Sheets).