Color Emotions

Color Emotions – Your Guide to the Psychology of Color

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While we experience life’s challenges and events, we naturally build a bond with colors representing emotions. This was recognized by the advertising industry. Certain colors are associated with emotions, and this could coincide with product sales and brand awareness. However, mood colors are very person-specific, and sometimes we see and feel color emotions uniquely. Read on to learn more about color and emotion.



What Is a Color Emotion Chart?

A Color emotion chart is a technique used to calculate an emotion represented by a color. Did you know that all colors representing emotions can be viewed in a collective color chart? The chart only captures true hues, but most colors encompass all shades and tones, and sometimes this can have an effect on the outcome.

Color HueColors Hex CodeShadeColor Emotions
Warm ColorsRed#FF0000 Passion, importance, aggression, love, warmth, intensity, comfort
Orange#FFA500 Playfulness, energy, cheapness, stimulation, excitement, happiness, joy, spirituality
Yellow#FFFF00 Happiness, friendliness, warning, optimism
Cool ColorsGreen#00FF00 Nature, stability, prosperity, growth, harmony, tranquility, fertility, creativity
Blue#0000FF Serenity, trust, inviting, loyalty, wisdom, calmness
Purple#A020F0 Luxury, mystery, romance, respect, wisdom, sophistication, bravery
Pink#FFC0CB Femininity, youth, innocence, love, calm, gentleness, romance
Neutral ColorsBrown#964B00 Earth, sturdiness, rustic, stability, security, comfort, reliability, sadness, isolation
Black#000000 Power, sophistication, sadness
White#FFFFFF Cleanliness, virtue, health

Colors Have Different Connotations



Each Color Has an Emotion

Color emotions are attached to every color you can imagine, even though they can be grouped, we can see how the individual tone has its mood connected to it. Even though shades of the individual colors can have a separate meaning, they can narrate individual moods too.

Colors Can Be Celebratory



The color red represents love, passion, and anger. The color red has no middle ground and holds both positive and negative emotions. The color red is considered one of the brightest colors on the color wheel and holds a longer wavelength than other colors. This makes people see it faster, therefore, it is often used for danger signs. When you see the color red, it will remind you of the color of blood, the heart fire, and stop signs. The color red is attached to emergencies or the feeling of being alert. That is why fire engines, sirens, and traffic lights are universally known for this color emotion. There are a few expressions that may have negative color emotions, such as “my bank balance is sitting in the red”, or “notice the red flags when meeting a new person”. However, the color red is the symbolic power of elegance and VIP treatment on the red carpet and celebrity status.

Red Colors Can Evoke Fear

Color emotions can also affect a person physically. Think of how red can enhance the body’s metabolism, raise blood pressure, and speed up heartbeats and breathing. Some say these color emotions are connected to stimulating the appetite, and many restaurant owners know this trick and use the color red in decoration and menus.

Red Colors Can Whet Your Appetite

Red ShadeRed Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Peach#FF5353 Youthfulness, femininity
Red#FF0000 Youthfulness, playfulness
Maroon#D60000 Power, durability, importance



Orange is categorized as a secondary color. It is a product of mixing the primary colors red and yellow. The color emotions of orange are closely related to the emotions of red and yellow, generally surrounded by jovial emotions such as love, happiness, optimism, and passion. However, orange color emotions are different in western and eastern cultures. In Southern Asia, the color orange is worn by Buddhist monks and is considered to be spiritual and simplistic, originating from unwanted clothing sewn together and re-dyed using saffron and turmeric. In American culture the color orange is closely associated with autumn festivals such as Thanksgiving and Halloween. It is also common for US prisons to issue inmates with orange clothing. The logic is, that since this color is so visually prominent, it makes any escapee very easy to in a landscape or a crowd.

Orange Robes for Spirituality

Orange is also known as an eye-catching color and is universally considered a cautionary shade. For example, orange is used for roadside equipment cones or used as a uniform for sports teams. Orange color emotions are generally seen as vitality, energy, and health vibrancy.

Orange Used on Traffic Cones

Orange ShadeOrange Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Vivid Orange#FF5E0E Energy, vivaciousness
Pumpkin#F5761A Warmth, coziness



What color means happy? Yellow color emotions are linked to happiness and optimism. If you have ever wondered what color emotions best represent happiness, think yellow! Reminding us of the warm sun and bold sunflowers, this color is positive and energized. But too much of anything can be overbearing and overstimulating, so take care when choosing a bright yellow as your color scheme.

Too Much Yellow Can Be Overstimulating

Pastel yellow is a wonderful choice for a baby nursery. It is a color that goes well with both boys and girls. It can become too much if used in a large-scale space, so this primary shade should be used to accessories a room. This level of attention-grabbing from color is best utilized in advertising, traffic signs, and taxis.

The yellow color emotions resonate with organized and intelligent thinkers and are one of the reasons behind post-its being the color yellow.

Sunshine Yellow is a Happy Color

Yellow ShadeYellow Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Bright Yellow#FFFF00 Happiness, anxiety, warning
Pastel Yellow#FFFFB7 Happiness, contentedness, organization



Many feel that the color green emotions are connected to nature and nature exudes balance and harmony. Green has a short wavelength and sits amidst extremely warm and cool tones. This accentuates the color green as balance. In the past two decades, the word ‘Green,’ has grown to be connected to environmental companies and sustainable living, and the slogan “going green”, means just that – keeping the world green and clean!

Green colors represent emotions of fertility and healing. In Western societies, green is also associated with money and financial security.

Green Represents New Life

The color green is universally known as safe to proceed with. In other words: GO! Talking about lighting, did you know that if you read under a green light, it improves your reading? Reading under a red light would have the opposite effect. As much as the color emotions for green have a positive connection due to its beauty seen in nature, the color emotions can have a negative connotations as well. When someone looks like they want to get sick and throw up, it can be said that they are “turning green”, and we all know the phrase “green with envy”.

Green Can Symbolize Envy

Green ShadeGreen Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Forest Green#0B6623 Peace, grounding, nature
Lime Green#C7EA46 Jealousy, coolness



What color is trust? The color emotions that can be seen in blue are calm, serene, trusting, and wise. This is why the color blue can be found in banks or used for the uniforms of those in power. The old notion is that blue is a masculine color, not suitable for girls. Our western culture has connected blue to boys and pink to represent girls. Blue is cool on the color wheel and is defined as sad and lonely. When observing artwork, such as Picasso’s “Blue Period” paintings, this is rather apparent. The English language has coined the expression “blue Monday”, a “blue moon”, and the “blues”.

Deep Blue is Restful and Moody

The color red can increase the heart rate, whereas blue would have the opposite effect. This concept proves how large of contrast red and blue are from each other. Blue tones are used in seafood restaurants to make the connection to the ocean, but restaurateurs will tell you that the blue color emotions are an appetite suppressant, and you should instead choose a different shade for the dining space.

Blue Symbolizes the Ocean

Blue is a primary tone, and because it is connected to the ocean, it is seen as a natural color, much like green. The ocean and the sky hold many shades of blue, and each shade represents emotions that embody freedom and energy.

Blue ShadeBlue Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
 Baby Blue#5DAEFF Comfort, serenity, peace
Turquoise#30D5C8 Energy, serenity, freedom, refreshment
Royal Blue#4169E1 Energy
Navy Blue#000080 Sadness, trust, dependability, security



What mood is purple? The color emotions of purple are spirituality, royalty, and luxury. Produced by combining shades of red and blue, this glorious color embodies both abilities to hold comfort and stimulation. Chocolate brands have claimed the color purple for themselves because of the luxury of eating chocolate. Purple is strong and prominent when viewed in its true form and is considered to be a creative and intellectual hue. Purple can be bold when used in interior design and fashion. Lilac is a popular shade of purple and has a comforting color and emotion.

Royal Purple Color

Traditionally, purple dye was very costly and rare because it was not easily found in nature, and it soon became the symbol of royalty and extravagance This is why there is purple in the robe worn by Queen Elizabeth II on her coronation in 1953. The question remains, what mood is purple? It depends on what part of the world you are in. Purple is connected to positivity and peace, but in some European traditions, purple is the color of mourning and death. In the US the purple heart military medal for wounded combatants symbolizes sacrifice and nobility of spirit.

US Purple Heart Medal

Purple ShadePurple Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Dark Purple#4B0082 Sadness, frustration, creativity, sensuality
 Purple#A020F0 Comfort, serenity, peace, spirituality
Light Purple#D192F8 Light-heartedness, romance



When it comes to mixing colors, the pink shade is derived from mixing white and touches of red. The redder you add to the mix, the more the blend becomes darker and brighter. Pink can be viewed as a lighter version of red, and if you add a smidgen of blue, you can change the tone to make it a cooler pink.

Pink is Associated with Infancy

Traditionally, the color pink is for girls. We have been raised in a society that categorizes blue for boys and pink for girls. Even though people can choose whatever color they want, be it for fashion or decor, there are certain universal colors we collectively understand. Fashion companies often use shades of pink to lure in female consumers.

The mood colors for pink shades are compassion, softness, kindness, and sophistication.

Pink Can Symbolize Fun and Nostalgia

Pink ShadePink Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Hot Pink#FF43A1 Joyfulness, playfulness
 Muted Pink#FF9FCF Youth, innocence
Dirty Pink#D66C8D Sophistication, nostalgia, romance



The color brown surprisingly has negative emotions attached to it. Even though it is the color of chocolate, it is often not the color option we choose when asked” what is your favorite color”? Shades of brown colors are associated with emotions of isolation or sadness.

Brown Can Symbolize Isolation and Loneliness

People can also see brown as a positive shade, where it is associated with nature and the tones of soil and earth. It has multi-sensory connections, and one can almost smell the color! For example, think of leather or wood! Because of its references to trees, the color emotions of brown are strength, security, comfort, and reliability.

Brown Can Evoke Feelings of Security and Comfort

Brown ShadeBrown Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Burnt Umber#8A3324 Warmth, comfort, nostalgia
Tan#D2B48C Happiness, contentedness, organization



Black is a mysterious color. It has so much depth and is often used to convey deep emotions. Black has a strong connection to confidence, and boldness, and is associated with magic and fantasy. It can convey intense feelings, and because some emotional reactions are personal, the color black can have both good and bad color emotions linked to it.

Black is Associated with Magic

Black is also the color of elegance and sophistication. This is why we hear the terms “black-tie event” or the “little black dress” – you think of extravagance, wealth, or money. In the same breath, black mood colors have negative connotations linked to death or evil, fear, and depression. Common English phrases incorporating the color black include “black magic”, “blackmail”, and the “black sheep of the family”.

Black is Elegant and Sophisticated

Black ShadeYellow Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Eerie Black#1B1B1B Fear, uneasiness
Gunmetal Black#2C3539 Coolness, control



The white color represents emotions of purity, innocence, and cleanliness. This is one of the main reasons why brides traditionally wear white wedding dresses and use white for the color scheme of the ceremony. The shade of white is linked to simplicity and health. Some of the negative feelings connected to the color white include coldness, isolation, and emptiness.

White Can Represent Coldness and Desolation

White ShadeWhite Hex CodeColorColor Emotion
Ghost White#F8F8FF Cold, uneasiness, chills
Ivory#FFFFF0 Romance, luxury




Collective Color Emotions

All colors associated with emotions exist as a collective on a color chart, and they can be grouped depending on their tone. The rules of color theory categorize colors into warm or cool groups, and each group has its unique wavelengths. Warm tones have a longer wavelength compared to cooler tones. Warm tones are bright colors such as red, orange, yellow, and pink, whereas cooler tones will be tones of blues, greens, and purples.

The human eye generally adjusts to warmer tones faster than cooler tones. This is one of the reasons why looking at an image with cooler tones would stir up adverse emotions, and vice versa. 

Joyful Color Combinations


Colors That Represent a Sad Mood

When you think of sad feelings, what color pops to mind? Gray or black is often the first answer people give. Color emotions that exude a negative mood are blue, green, and even beige. Black has always been associated with sadness. Both black and white are worn as the colors of mourning at funerals and are associated with depression and death in various cultures across the globe.

Desaturated Color Can Evoke Sadness

Sad ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
 Gray#8080800, 0, 0, 50128, 128, 128 
 Dark Blue#000066100, 100, 0, 600, 0, 102 
Dark Green#006400100, 0, 100, 610, 100, 0 
Black#0000000, 0, 0, 1000, 0, 0 


Colors That Represent Happiness

Warm colors such as pink, orange, yellow, and red are considered to be happy colors, radiating positivity and happy thoughts. These colors represent love, joy, and warmth. So, what color means happy? The three primary colors set in their true hue are also considered happy mood colors, and when you take cooler colors and change the shade to a bright neon or tone them down to a pastel tone.

This can result in color emotions changing to a positive instead of negative.

Happy ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
 Yellow#FFFF000, 0, 100, 0255, 255, 0 
Orange#FFA5000, 35, 100, 0255, 165, 0 
Red#FF00000, 100, 100, 0255, 0, 0 
Light Pink#FFC0CB0, 25, 20, 0255, 192, 203 

Orange and Yellow Can Represent Happiness


Colors That Represent Comfort

Even though warm colors are associated with emotions that are homely and loving, cooler tones used correctly can be seen as comforting colors. Changing the cooler tones to pastel shades and combining them alongside neutral tones such as beige, gray, and even white. Used in the most ideal setting, this color combination can create a sense of calm and comfort with a hint of elegance.

Comfort ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
 Baby Blue#5DAEFF64, 32, 0, 093, 174, 255 
 Lilac#D192F816, 41, 0, 3209, 146, 248 
Mint Green#94E86A36, 0, 54, 9148, 232, 106 
Beige#F5F5DC0, 0, 10, 4245, 245, 220 
Light Gray#8080800, 0, 0, 50128, 128, 128 
White#FFFFFF0, 0, 0, 0255, 255, 255 

Colors Can Evoke Comforting Emotions


What Colors Energize Your Mood?

Magenta, royal blue, turquoise, electric yellow, and neon green are all attention-grabbing bright colors, perfect for billboards and banners. These bright shades are considered to be energizing colors. These colors, when combined, can create unpleasant viewing and should probably not be a combination for your home or wardrobe. Red, bright green, and yellow are often used to create awareness because they are loud and in your face. A color emotion chart is a great way to figure out what colors complement each other well.

Energizing ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
 Magenta#FF00FF0, 100, 0, 0255, 0, 255 
Turquoise#30D5C877, 0, 6, 1648, 213, 200 
Royal Blue#4169E171, 53, 0, 1265, 105, 225 
Electric Yellow#FFF3090, 5, 96, 0255, 243, 9 
Neon Green#61FF4762, 0, 72, 097, 255, 71 



The colors associated with emotions are endless, and so are the number of unique shades that can easily be matched to a feeling. The color emotion chart is a wonderful tool to use to arouse specific responses and feelings from people when used in a professional sense for interior design, billboards, and advertising. The correct use of color will have a long-lasting effect on your work, so be sure to use mood colors correctly.



Frequently Asked Questions


Does Happiness Have a Color?

What color means happy? The first shades we think of are warm tones, so yellows and oranges pop to mind. We tend to associate mood colors with what is logical, and yellow can be found in flowers and the sun which radiates happiness and positivity. Orange, however, is a secondary hue to yellow and can also be related to playfulness and happiness. The next time you think about what color means happy, think of a happy sunflower!


Does Trust Have a Color?

The color blue represents trust. This is why we can see the color blue for uniforms for the police and the navy. Learning what color is associated with trust can help us understand why banks and other large organizations have linked this shade to their brand. Shades of blue hue are linked to emotions of calmness, dependability, and security, so it is understandable why security companies choose this color as part of their branding and uniforms.


Does Purple Have a Mood?

What mood is purple? Because of its traditional connections to royalty and wisdom, it’s easy to understand its meaning. Kings and queens throughout history dressed in purple clothing as a symbol of wealth and nobility. Light purple colors such as lavender and lilac are soft and promote romance and luxury. With every positive, there is a negative, and the negative emotions are connected to sadness and frustration.


Which Mood Color Is Considered to Be the Most Emotional?

When it comes to describing which mood color is the most emotional of all, red is the shade that comes to mind. The red hue represents multiple color emotions. It encompasses all feelings related to passion, anger, and love. Red is associated with emotions of being alert and danger; however, it also carries feelings of romance and love.

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