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How Paint Color Affects You, Part 1: Baker-Miller Pink

January 20, 2017

Color is absolutely amazing, and we’re not saying that just because we want you to let us paint your rooms! Color plays an incredible part in mood and how we react to situations. In the next few blogs, we thought we’d take some time to reveal how paint affects you, whether you’re at home, at a business, or in jail (more on that in a minute).

We’re going to get around to the basics of blue, green, and red, but we thought we’d start off with Baker-Miller Pink, a color that will change your life whenever you’re surrounded by it. How? Let’s find out.

The Scientist!

Alexander Schauss was a Director of Life Sciences at the American Institute for Biosocial Research back in the 1960s. He was particularly interested in the notion that pink was a calming color and set out to discover if it truly was playing tricks on the human mind and affecting the body at the same time.

The Science!

Schauss tested many different shades of pink before he discovered one that seemed affect him psychologically and physiologically. This shade was created by combining one part red trim paint to eight parts pure white latex paint. He called this color P-618. When combined in RGB light (such as a computer screen) it’s R:255, G:145, B: 175. At a print shop using CMYK inks, it’s represented as C:0 M:43, Y:31, K:0.

Schauss then went on to experiment on himself by staring at the color for prolonged periods, usually around 15-minutes at a time. He even stared at it while exercising, and he found that blood pressure, muscle strength, and heart rate were reduced while staring at a card covered in P-618.

The Application!

Schauss wanted to test the color on a larger scale. He convinced wardens at the local Navy jail to paint the holding tank this new color he’d discovered. (The warden’s last names were Baker and Miller, but we’re not sure how they feel about having a docile pink named after them!) During the time the holding facility was painted Baker-Miller Pink, there were no aggressive outbursts from seamen who were detained there.

When word of its effectiveness got around, more jails jumped on the bandwagon in order to reduce the amount of altercations between officers and offenders. Just 15 minutes surrounded by these colors seemed to calm anyone in the room. Thus Baker-Miller Pink became known as “drunk tank pink.”

The Ban!

Have you ever been in a locker room, even a women’s locker room, that was painted pink? Probably not. When sports coaches learned that Baker-Miller Pink reduced aggression, they painted the visiting team’s locker room in this soothing color. Conversely, they’d paint the home team’s locker room red. And it worked! In fact, it worked so well that many leagues have rules saying that both locker rooms have to be painted the same color.

The Continued Science!

Does Baker-Miller pink truly work as well as Schauss said it did? Continuing studies are often conflicting; some say it certainly works on reducing muscle strength but has no effect on blood pressure. If the effects have dimmed over the decades, it’s possible that we’re dealing with a case of public awareness. Even if subjects are not aware of Baker-Miller pink, they  might be suspicious of such a bold color because they are aware of color science in general.

So, what do you think? Do you think it’s possible that a color can affect you emotionally while affecting your body at the same time? Would you like some local painters to paint your bedroom Baker-Miller Pink? Probably not. But we’re more than happy to help you find that perfect color for the entire interior of your home. Contact DJ’s painting today!

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