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Psychology Of Color In Advertising Design

The psychology of color and advertising design plays an important role in graphic design, as does the psychology of how humans perceive color. Let’s take a look at some of how color can affect human psychology as used in advertising design.

Color In Design Psychology

Color psychology in advertising design triggers human emotions and behaviors. We react to color and shapes based on an automatic series of interactions between our preferences, surroundings, and cultural background. Color can affect perceptions in subtle ways; for instance, it can enhance or detract from the way or how fast we interpret advertising design. Read why graphic design is a driving force behind business growth.

The proper colors can even enhance how effective logos and social advertising campaigns perform. For example, blue and green are commonly used colors for technology or medicine. They are associated with depth and stability. They symbolize trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, and intelligence. Whereas red or yellow are usually used as design stimulant expressing danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion.

Every brand and business emphasize color deliberately in their product designs, packaging, advertisements, and websites. High-level artists and graphic designers use color theory to help establish brand color guidelines that reflect the company’s mission. The psychology of color can trigger the desired responses from protentional consumers, and this is often a large part of the graphic designer’s goal. Great advertising design also anticipates cultural differences within the way colors are perceived. An equivalent color can mean very various things to different audiences; for instance, in most cultures’ yellow features a bright, cheerful connotation, but in China, it’s going to have vulgar or adult connotations. Within the U.S. white symbolizes purity and is usually used for bridal branding, but white may be a mourning color in nonwestern countries. Understand your audience, what you’re selling, and what they are buying. Choose the colors for advertising design wisely.

Male And Female Colors

Concentrate on consumers’ reaction towards the actual color instead of focusing the color itself. Men and women react differently to color in advertising design. This is generally why designers tend to use altered colors in their layouts to increase the likability of the users and improve design recall, interactive behavior, and conversions.

Warm Colors

Red, orange, and yellow and similar hue variations are the nice and cozy colors. Generally speaking, they’re positive, passionate, happy, enthusiastic, and energizing.

Red (primary color)

Positive associations: passion, durable emotions, enjoyment, love, confidence, comfort, warmth. Reactionary advertising design uses bright red as an accent color; red, together with gray and white, for a knowledgeable, elegant look.

Orange (secondary)

Positive associations: excitement, energy, health and vitality, friendly, enthusiasm, beauty, earthiness, seasonal change, affordability, and horsepower. Orange is commonly used for industrial, retail and restaurants. Food and drink websites often use orange because it stimulates appetite.

Yellow (primary)

Yellow is considered to be warm, cheerful, attention-grabbing, happiness, hope. Common design uses soft yellows for products and services involving children; golds and darker yellows for an antique look and a sense of long-lasting appeal or permanence.

Cool Colors

Green, blue, and purple are striking cool colors. Generally, they’re more artistic, reserved, relaxed, professional, and calming than warm colors.

Green (secondary)

Green is considered to be nature, growth, health, new beginnings, money, renewal, calm, fertility, good luck, harmony, and balance. Financial advertising design is associated with green. Darker greens signal renewal, stability, affluence, wealth and stability.

Blue (primary)

Blue is considered to be an authority, calming, conservative (but also can mean liberal political values), masculine, non-threatening, peaceful, refreshing, reliable, responsible, serene, stable, strength, tranquil. Regal advertising design is connected with royal blue. Baby blues for baby and young children’s products; light blues for calming and relaxing effects; bright blues for a refreshing, energizing feel; dark blues for corporate designs and other places where reliability and strength are important.

Purple (secondary)

Purple is considered to be magical, creative, mysterious, spiritual, imaginative, luxurious, royalty, romance, wealth, and military honor. Creative advertising design goes hand in hand with purple. Light purples for pampering, beauty, and romance; dark purples for creativity and wealth.


Neutral colors are critical to advertising design because they’re so often functioning as the base or background layer and complement the brighter accent colors. However, neutral colors can also speak volumes on their own and carry their sophisticated meanings and messages.


White is considered to be cleanliness, bridal, innocence, virginity, healthcare, purity, goodness, and peace. Advertising design primarily uses white in minimalist design formats. As a backdrop white lets, other colors shine. White headline or body text is referred to as reversed of knocked out text. White also can convey season like summer and winter.


Black is considered to be magic, Halloween, power, fashion, elegance, mystery, wealth, and ritual. Black is a helpful informal advertising design to convey an edgy, mysterious or elegant feel. Black is additionally the default color of typography.


Gray/Grey is considered to be professional, formal, sophisticated. Gray/Grey is a fantastic supplemental color for corporate advertising design. It’s so versatile that it’s used in backgrounds and typography.

Brown And Beige

Brown and beige are considered to be earthy, down-to-earth, warm, family, dependability, steadfastness, comfortable, and reliable. Brown is regularly used in standard notification advertising design for backgrounds, especially for natural-looking wood and stone looks, and as a substitute for black typography or backgrounds.


Advertising design takes much more than selecting color combinations that look nice to catch the eye of today’s busy consumer. There are nine other critical issues that will affect your brand. Careful consideration of color is critical to achieving the desired effect. Color theory is simply one part of a graphic designer’s job. A thorough understanding of the psychology of color in advertising design is the baseline. Moreover, knowing the rules and understanding strategically how and when to use them requires education, knowledge, and more than 10,000 hours of practice. Art is creating something pretty. Advertising is designing a response.