Colour psychology can basically be defined as the inquiry into colours and how they have a say on human behaviour. Colour exerts influence on perception which is not noticeable such as the taste of a meal. Colour also has the capacity to improve the efficacy of the placebo effect. For instance, most stimulants usually come in either red or orange colours, this gives the user a thought pattern that the stimulant is bound to perform its exact duties.

Colour can also have influence on an individual. However, it should be noted that such effects would vary between people. Some factors such as the age of an individual, the gender and culture, can impact how a person sees colour. For instance, it would be a common notion for a heterosexual to think that a red clothe improves the attractiveness of a female, while a heterosexual female would deny any clothe outfit which enhances that of men.

In branding and marketing, colour psychology is an important tool. A good number of marketers employ colour in marketing, because it can be utilized in influencing the emotions and perceptions of their potential customers, when it comes to the sale of goods and services. In the creation of logos, companies also put colour psychology to use. These logos can impact customers because the colours which are used, goes in line with the goods or services.

Below are common colours and the emotions and ideas which they are associated with:

  • Red: Warning, courage, love, aggression, rage
  • Blue: Trust, efficiency, sadness, security, coolness
  • Yellow: Energy, fear, frailness, honour, hope
  • Green: Health, favour, ambition, passivity, compassion
  • Orange: Wisdom, pride, pleasure, desire, loneliness
  • Purple: Wealth, impatience, wisdom, dignity, arrogance
  • Pink: Joyfulness, lack of willpower, passiveness, calmness, sweetness
  • Black: Emptiness, security, coldness, gloom, aggression
  • White: Perfection, sterility, cleanliness, coldness, goodness

Colour psychology has a conventional model which is based on six fundamental principles:

  • Colour could carry a specific meaning
  • The meaning of colour is either based on innate learning or learned meaning
  • The discernment of colour induces automated evaluation by the person observing
  • The evaluation process induces a behaviour which is colour-motivated
  • Colour imposes influence spontaneously
  • The meaning and effect of colour has a link with its context