Colour Psychology

An overview of colour psychology

What is colour psychology?

Colour psychology examines,  and is the study of the impact of hues on human behaviour as well as well-being. There certainly is an aesthetic and psychological response to colour, and colour does influence art, fashion, commerce as well as psychological, emotional sensations. The response to colour tends to be dependent on personal experience, and we can’t generalise the meaning of colours with concrete statements such as, ‘red means danger and passion’, because, in most cases even when this may be the case, colours differ in meaning to different individuals. Each may be affected by colour differently, depending on their continuously evolving experiences. However, research has noted broader patterns in the moods that colours evoke. These are based on stereotypes and societal conventions that, although evolving, arouse similar associations for large groups of people.

Research states that each time you encounter colour, your adrenaline, blood pressure and heart rate either increase or decrease. I also am curious as to how true is this? It appears, warm colours increase the blood pressure and cool colours stimulate a decrease, and apparently this is why cool colours are often recommended for relaxing environments such as psychological health facilities.

Tony Buzan, who also suggested the use of colours and mind mapping in studying, talked about colours affecting how the brain grasps information. As this may not work, and be true for everyone, mind mapping has been beneficial for me.

Instances where colour psychology is used

Colour psychology is relevant in every aspect of design. Colour counts in first impressions, and study shows that not only do colours communicate they can too, influence perception. Colour is the first thing we notice in encounters, so whether it’s the branding of a product, or the creation of an environment that should inspire service users, colour psychology is relevant. Now look at some of your favourite brands and wonder if the colours used on the product in any way played a role in you admiring it.

Research also states that, the human brain can be drawn towards, or away from a company, a product or service, purely because of its colour palette. Interesting right?

My experience with colour psychology

When I had just started blogging, and I shared the link with some of my closest friends, there were a number of remarks made about the colours used on the background of our site, colours I have changed overtime for a number of reasons. “The colors you have used are warm and calm, they are not intense or violent”, they said.

As intentional as I was with the use of these colours, I had no clue there was such a thing as color psychology, well that was until a dearest friend, whose real name i do not know mentioned it

This is the first background photo/wallpaper for this blog. A tulle fabric with toned down shades of a different colours.

Outside of any proven fact, , my use of colors, outside of this blog was to analyse my emotions when they were too overwhelming and well, thought alone was not enough. Yes, sometimes I feel green and researching the possible meanings behind green brought back accurate results 7/10 times. I have too, written poetry objectifying colour. The colours i was attracted to in a day, and a moment, highlighted my mood. One time at a park I told a friend of mine that too many people were wearing maroon that day, asking me to point out those people, and further saying, she on the other hand, was noticing too much yellow. The little that was my experience was, colour just highlighted, and emphasized, rather than influencing my emotions.

I remember an incident that took place in 2019. I had just finished doing my laundry, hanging it in the laundry line. There were a group of friends, at the stairs, in the next building who were pointing at my laundry. When i looked at the clothes i had hanged, they were black and grey, with just a little bit of colour. i was not aware that this was the case, and i was not aware that these were somehow my favourite colours. I did not attach any stories to it and kept it moving, but i knew i had to buy more coloured clothes.

2018 and 2019, in terms of mental health and psychological wellbeing, i was in my worst, too much social media, less friends, and excessive social anxiety. Not just these, I became overly attached to using marijuana and in a way I could have advocated for it. I realise this now when i reflect back, but it’s in these moments when i found the most healing, and everyday after that has been, the most liberating.

Indirect communication through colour

My curious question is, is there a message behind a gothic sense of fashion, or any other fashion. Yes there is a story behind every dress code, even when that message is to say i am carefree, i am rebellious, at other times, like my 2019 period, it was a deeper underlying issue that i was not aware of, but has reflected externally. Directly or indirectly, we are conveying a message each time we dress.

Another story about colour

Pablo Picasso’s blue period, which started after his friend committed suicide in 1901 and lasted until 1904.  Read more about Pablo Picasso’s blue period on the link attached.


What is the significanse of this post? Nothing, besides that it is beautiful learning, subjectively or otherwise. Learning on its own, in its own right has been a liberating act.

2 thoughts on “Colour Psychology

  1. I loved reading this, so informative, powerful and yet relatable. I for one had no idea there was such a thing as Colour Psychology till this, im always happy to learn.

    Liked by 1 person

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