So you’ve gotten yourself a freshly painted wall only to find out that the color isn’t exactly the same as the one you saw in the store. You check the paint label. Yup, it’s exactly the same code and name. What went wrong? Well, my friend, this could be a result of metamerism. What is metamerism and why is it important in choosing colors for your living space? Let me give you the low down.

What is Metamerism?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of metamerism (in colorimetry) is “the identical visual appearance of two colors that have different physical or spectral compositions.” Wow, that was a mouthful. Basically, what it means is that two colors that might look the same under one kind of light, might not necessarily look the same under a different kind of light. I’m not going to get into much of the science of things. To put it simply though, every color that we perceive is a result of both the type of light reflecting off of that color and the pigments used to come up with that color.

In coming up with the perfect selfie, we’re always advised to go with warm, yellow lights instead of stark fluorescent ones. Yellow lights can bring out the warmer undertones of our skin making us glow. In the same way that incandescent light brings out that glow in us, it pulls out more yellow tones on our favorite red and yellow hues. So, take note!

Why is Metamerism Important?

Metamerism: What It is and Why It's Important in Choosing Colors | MyBoysen

Now why is this piece of knowledge important? Well, it’s because it’s something we often overlook when it comes to designing our houses. Then we’re just in for a big surprise once we turn on our lights at home. There’s really one simple thing to do to go about this. Remember what type of light your living space has! There are only usually two major ones: white and yellow lights. Before making a major paint purchase, you can place your color reference or color swatch under two different types of light to see if there are any major differences.

Sample Pots at The Color Library

Test Out a Paint Color: Where to Find Boysen Paint in 200 mL Sizes | MyBoysen

Do you want to be extra extra sure of how your chosen color looks on your walls? Head on over to Boysen’s concept store, The Color Library! We have over a thousand colors available for you to browse there. Pick the colors you fancy (in super convenient 200mL sample pots) and bring them home. Paint these colors on large cardboard pieces and hold them up to your walls. Now, check the color under sunlight, white light, and yellow light. Are you happy with the outcome? Then you’ve found the one.

If you’ve finally settled on the perfect color using this method, take note of the paint code and paint name of the sample pot and head on over to a Boysen Mix & Match station near you!

Some Final Thoughts

Do you have any other question on metamerism, paints, or colors? Send us an email over at We’re always happy to help. Subscribe to the blog when you’re at it, too. We send in short and sweet email blasts on weekends. Happy painting!


Inah is an avid overplanner with a manic desire to organize everything. She dedicates most of her time and attention to her two chunky dogs, Prince and Peanut. If there's a bit of extra time on hand, she will spring clean her entire house.

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