Most Commonly Used Colors
Red - Stimulating. Exciting. Energizing. Appetizing. When you eye sees red, chemical
responses in your body cause your blood pressure, pulse rate, and adrenaline to increase. Fire engine red is more energetic
than a more traditional burgundy.
Pink - Happy. Romantic. Spirited. Youthful. Best used for less expensive and trendy
products. Vibrant pinks are common in the cosmetic industry. Bubble gum pink can be considered immature, but fuchsia or
magenta are considered more sophisticated.
Orange - Friendly. Adventurous. Energizing. Inviting. Of all the colors, orange is the
hottest. Similar to red's arousing effect, orange is often associated with bright sunsets or fall foliage. Orange contains the
drama of red with the cheeriness of yellow. Neon orange tends to be load and is the most disliked color, but a more tempered
vivid orange is highly effective for point-of-purchase graphics and specials.
Yellow - Warm. Sunny. Cheerful. Vibrant. Yellow is equivalent to enlightenment and
imagination. This color is especially effective for food service industries because of the association to bananas, custards
and lemons. Pale yellow is an excellent choice for point-of-purchase materials (materials at the cash register or reception
area) because the eye sees the highly reflective yellow before it notices any other color.
Brown - Rich. Sheltering. Durable. Sensible. Brown is an earth tone and is related to the
earth's nurturing qualities and stability. Generally speaking, brown provokes a positive response, but the wrong shade could
lead to customers relating it to dirty, which could be detrimental for a product in the fashion industry, for example. Brown
works well with food products since customers also relate it to root beer, coffee and chocolate.
Blue - Cool. Trusting. Serene. Consistent. Similar to the earthy color brown, blue is
related to the sky and water, both dependable constants in our lives. Blue is an ideal color for websites, especially e-commerce
websites. Many banks and financial institutions use blue in their marketing because it makes customers feel more trusting. Blue
also can generate a cold, distant, corporate feeling, the opposite of generating a personal relationship with the customer.
Green - Refreshing. Healing. Fresh. Soothing. Green offers the most variety of choices out of all the colors of the rainbow.
Green works well for personal hygiene or beauty products because of its soothing and flattering tones. Most people link green
to nature; they think of foliage or grass. Mint green is seen as fresh while bright greens are associated with grass. Emerald
greens are elegant and deep greens are linked to money and prestige. Green is also combined nicely with many other colors and
can also work as a neutral.
Purple - Elegant. Sensual. Regal. Mysterious. Purple is seen as sensual and spiritual as
it combines the sexuality of red and the sereneness of blue. It is best used with creative products, new products, or cutting
edge products. Deep purple is associated with regal sophistication and lavender has a more subtle nostalgic appeal.
Neutrals - Classic. Quality. Natural. Timeless. The neutral tones of beige, gray and
taupe emulate the psychological message of dependability and timelessness. They are regarded as safe and non-offensive and will not
go out-of-date as they are always in style.
White - Pure. Bright. Pristine. Simple. While white can signify
clean elegance, it can also be considered generic
and stark, unless you have stylish graphics to compliment the white.
Black - Strong. Classic. Mysterious. Powerful. Black is most closely associated with the night. Black is seen as
powerful, dramatic, elegant and expensive. In food packaging, a customer will actually pay more for a gourmet image. Although
black is associated with mourning, its positive associations far outweigh its negative. Warning: too much black can be overkill.