Answer This One Question to Find Your Ideal Feng Shui Office Color

Peak prosperity awaits.

Updated 09/24/19
Courtesy of Studio DB

Did you know that, according to feng shui design principles, choosing the best paint color for a room in your home depends on what direction that room faces? We didn't either, that is until we spoke with feng shui expert Robert Brown, MD, author of Toxic Home/Conscious Home. Having studied mindfulness at home at length and in a holistic way, Brown knows exactly how to apply feng shui principles to achieve a healthy and happy home.

"Feng shui emphasizes the harmony with one's internal and external environment and the world at large," Brown explains. "Creating this harmony is particularly important when assessing the color of one’s home office, the place in the home where wealth and abundance are of paramount importance." So how exactly should you choose the ideal office colors, according to feng shui? Brown recommends answering one simple question: Which cardinal direction does your home office face? 

Home office looks out into greenery, displays framed gallery wall and an artist's easel
Julia Robbs

According to feng shui, a room's ideal color should align with the cardinal direction it faces. To find it, "Stand in the center of your home and with the aid of a compass, find the direction of your home office," Brown explains. Then, choose colors harmonious (meaning a balance between earth, water, fire, and metal elements) with that direction. 

Ready to find the paint color for your workspace that will bring you productivity and prosperity? Scroll down for Brown's feng shui tips for your ideal office colors, according to whether your office faces North, South, East, West, and the directions in between.

01 of 16

If Your Office Faces North

Living room awash in painted blue walls and ceiling
Courtesy of Studio DB

If your office faces north, your room is associated with the water element according to feng shui principles, so any and all aquatic shades are your best option. "Consider pale shades of blue and green to accent the water element," says Brown.

Accent your office with bolder shades of blue or green.

Farrow & Ball St Giles Blue $40-$125
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02 of 16

If Your Office Faces South

Home office feature red wall paper with animal print and tiered white overhead shelving
Courtesy of Studio DB

"Choose reds, oranges, and yellows," suggests Brown. "These colors represent the energy associated with the fire element."

Benjamin Moore Caliente $37
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03 of 16

Avoid This If Your Office Faces South

Home office with red, orange, purple tones and metallic finishes

COURTESY OF STUDIO DB

For southern-facing offices, Brown also recommends avoiding any blue shade in the room. "The water element will dampen the energy inherent in the fire position of your home."

04 of 16

If Your Office Faces East (or Southeast)

Home office looks out into garden through an open sliding door
Courtesy of Elizabeth Roberts

The ideal colors for an east or southeast-facing room are browns, tans, and greens. "These color choices represent the stability of the wood element."

Farrow & Ball Breakfast Room Green $44-$137
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05 of 16

Avoid This If Your Office Faces East (or Southeast)

Office with lots of wood elements

 Jute

"Do not place reds, oranges, or bright yellow colors in east or southeast facing rooms, since they will over energize the room and burn up the stabilizing energy provided by the wood element," advises Brown. 

06 of 16

If Your Office Faces West (or Northwest)

Home office with pastel furniture and white walls
Courtesy of Charlie Ferrer

"West and northwest[-facing] rooms are energized by the metal element," explains the feng shui expert. "These rooms should be white or gray."

Benjamin Moore Dreamy Cloud $37
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07 of 16

Add This to Western-facing Offices

Office with large-scale metallic artwork and gold metallic side table

CONSORT DESIGN 

Brown also recommends adding metallic accents throughout the room to enhance prosperity.

08 of 16

If Your Office Faces Southwest (or Northeast)

Home office in wood furnishings and trimmings and earthy colors
Heidi's Bridge

Southwest- and northeast-facing rooms accentuate the earth element. "These rooms should be light yellow, light brown, or shades of beige and tan," explains Brown. In other words, earthy tones are your best options for this type of home office.

Benjamin Moore Coastal Path $37
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09 of 16

Incorporating Greens

Office with organic materials, potted and desk plants

 STEPHEN BUSKEN

Adding color to your home office emphasizes feng shui's symbolism. For example, the color green promotes growth, new beginnings, a through line to nature.

10 of 16

Adding Purples

Chic office in purple tones and two white orchid plants

Lamond Projects 

In feng shui, shades of purple are most associated with the fire element. This intense shade represents power and mystery, though softer shades of lavender promote calm, imagination, and clarity.

11 of 16

Considering Earthy Tones

Home office with natural, organic décor

Jute 

Browns, tans, and other natural colors can help ground an office space, as well as facilitate an inviting atmosphere.

12 of 16

Choosing Blues

Home office with large-scale teal artwork, blue striped throw pillow, table lamp

 MICHAEL WELLS

Blue is a fluid color associated with the water element and can offer feelings of healing and safety.

13 of 16

Opting for White

Home office decorated in white, cream, natural wood tones

Fantastic Frank 

In feng shui, the color white is a high energy color that symbolize possibilities, focus, and cleanliness. Too much white may be unsettling, so feng shui experts recommend using white as an accent color in your home office.

14 of 16

Emphasize Yang Energy

Light, bright office space with desk lamps and floor-to-ceiling bookshelves

@STUDIOASHBY 

For home offices in particular, Brown recommends emphasizing yang energy, meaning more energetic and proactive elements, over yin, which is known to be softer and more passive. "Home offices should be more yang energy than yin energy," explains Brown to conclude. Think: Bright, spacious, angular lines.

15 of 16

Think Bright and Light

Home office with artwork on walls and large windows

 MICHAEL WELLS

According to Brown, "Make sure there is bright lighting suitable for detailed work, and hang lively and inspiring artwork on the walls."

16 of 16

For Prosperity

Office with L-shaped desk and table lamp

STEPHEN BUSKEN 

"Placing metal objects, such as a jar of coins in the west or northwest corner of the room, will also enhance prosperity,” says Brown.

Next up: A feng shui expert would never lay out their home office this way.

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