Well, it can be really complicated and WAY too scientific for my artsy-fartsy brain to fully explain, so I’m going to give you the KISS version of LRV and how it can affect your room (and your sanity).
And BTW, ANY colour will look lighter when hit with DIRECT natural or artificial light. What we’re talking about here are walls with an ‘average’ amount of light. The less light there is, the less light there will be to reflect. The more light there is, the more light there will be to reflect. Capiche?
LRV refers to how much light a paint colour reflects
LRV is defined on a scale of 0-100
Low LRV = Reflects SOME, but not much light. Basically, if a colour’s LRV is 10, it’s only going to reflect a very small amount of light back into the room. What this means is that it really absorbs a lot of the light that it’s offered. So, on a wall with an average amount of light, a colour with a low LRV will only look just a bit lighter. Once a good light source is taken away and there are poor lighting conditions, the colour will be very dark.
Medium LRV = Reflects a moderate amount of light, which in turn will make the paint colour look lighter than you think it will based on that small chip. Not a lot lighter, but a bit for sure.
High LRV = Reflects A LOT of light. A colour with a higher LRV will look brighter than it does on that wee little paint chip when exposed to an average amount of light. The higher the number is, and the more light there is, the lighter the paint colour will look.