Colors Influence Your Emotions and Decisions: Learn How Here!

The influence of colors on each individual's behavior may happen consciously or unconsciously and is more powerful than we might think.
Colors Influence Your Emotions and Decisions: Learn How Here!
Bernardo Peña

Written and verified by the psychologist Bernardo Peña.

Last update: 09 October, 2022

Our sight allows us to perceive countless images and objects. Obviously, thanks to it, we can see colors. And undoubtedly, colors influence our daily lives.

Every object reflects light differently. This reflected light is what we perceive as color.

Moreover, each of us reacts in a specific way to colors. The way colors influence us may reflect emotions or preferences with regard to things such as:

  • Food
  • Images
  • Advertising

Color psychology is the field of study specifically devoted to analyzing how colors influence us.

Also, the colors most people can distinguish appear in the rainbow. In order of first place to last, they are:

  • Red
  • Orange
  • Yellow
  • Green
  • Blue
  • Indigo
  • Violet

Now that we’ve mentioned them in order, we’ll describe each of them. In addition, we’ll explain how these colors influence people.

Learn How Rainbow Colors Influence Your Emotions and Decisions

1. Red

woman in red

As has been noted, first comes red. It is the most striking color. It evokes feelings such as:

  • Love
  • Passion
  • Warmth
  • Vitality
  • Comfort

On the other hand, it can also represent negative feelings:

  • Anger
  • Rage
  • Lack of control
  • Violence

In addition, it is used for signs of danger. It is associated with violent situations too. So red is a good example of how colors influence our behavior.

Additionally, red has some effects on our bodies. These include:

  • Heart rate increase
  • Increased appetite
  • Sensation of warmth

Red is strongly vibrant. For this reason, it both sticks in our mind and has the effect of attracting people.

2. Orange

Of course, then is orange. This warm color is not as impressive as red. Another key point of orange is its association with energetic or very dominant people.

This color suggests:

  • Boldness
  • Desires
  • Youth
  • Adventure
  • Imagination
  • Positive stimulation

Furthermore, orange can make us feel hungry and thirsty. Therefore, it is suitable for restaurants and food areas.

In addition, in a closed room, it can cause insomnia. This is because of its intensity.

3. Yellow

woman in yellow jacket making the OK symbol because colors influence emotions

So, now, let’s talk about yellow. This tone attracts people’s attention. This is a result of its warm, pleasant and stimulating luminosity.

Its meanings include:

  • Immortality
  • Arrogance
  • Power
  • Strength
  • Dominion
  • Wealth

In daily life, it is used for warning signs.

It is a color that speaks of light. Moreover, it is associated with intelligence.

In small areas and in a light tone, it is pleasant. However, used in large spaces and with intense tones, it can be irritating and tires the eye. It speeds metabolism. It can also cause frustration or anger if used in a small room. Nevertheless, this happens in the cases of intense shades.

4. Green

Next is green. This is the color of nature. It evokes images of the countryside and forest.

It speaks of:

  • Spring
  • Fertility
  • Renewal
  • Growth

In its positive sense, it means:

  • Good luck
  • Health
  • Hope
  • Logic

Green is blue and yellow combined. Therefore, it is considered a midpoint between emotions and judgement.

After stressful moments, it causes:

  • Freshness
  • Relief
  • Calm
  • Comfort
  • Relaxation
  • Rest

Also, it is associated with sociable, kind and patient people who hate loneliness and therefore seek out company.

5. Blue

Couple dressed in blue

Another one of the rainbow colors is blue. Blue readily brings to mind the image of the sky. Furthermore, it is strongly associated with the sea.

On the other hand, it relates to many abstract concepts. These include:

  • Trust
  • Intelligence
  • Peace
  • Nobility
  • Safety
  • Truth
  • Wisdom
  • Immortality
  • Trustworthiness

Blue is a cold color. For this reason, it also suggests the image of either ice or iron, depending on the intensity of the shade.

Additionally, blue motivates rest and quietness. In addition, it does not tire our eyes. Thus it can be used in large spaces.

It has a relaxing effect. In other words, it causes serenity. Furthermore, it can lower body temperature and even the pulse. On the negative side, it can create feelings of sadness.

6. Indigo

It is after blue. Indigo stimulates imagination and intuition, deepens our emotions and darkens our thoughts. In other words, it has a strong impact on our minds. Therefore, it can be dangerous for depressed people. It also has sedative effects.

On the other hand, it represents beauty, mystery and wisdom. Additionally, in Asian countries like India and China, people use it a lot. Another frequent use of this color is in the paper and textile industries.

7. Violet

woman drinking water

Violet comes last but not least. It symbolizes humility and patience.

Moreover, it is associated with reflective people, as well as with:

  • Loneliness
  • Pain
  • Sacrifice
  • Mysticism

This color, made up of red and blue, has contradictory meanings.

It promotes relaxation, spiritual strength and sensitivity in people with irritable character. When it comes to stronger shades of violet, they are associated with egocentric and materialistic people.

What About White and Black?

Then we also have white and black. But these are not considered colors. The former is the sum of all colors, while the latter is the absence of color. Despite not being colors, they influence people’s behavior too.


It is typically used by serene, understanding people. White helps with fighting feelings of disappointment or isolation.

In addition, it symbolizes:

  • Purity
  • Innocence
  • Chastity
  • Cleanliness
  • Virtue

White also lights things up. Therefore, it creates the sensation of clean and ample rooms. Nonetheless, it can also make them feel cold.


gorgeous outfit for a woman

On the other hand, black absorbs all light. Thus it relates to:

  • Death
  • Darkness
  • Destruction
  • Mourning
  • Mystery
  • Elegance

Besides, being the opposite of white, black symbolizes:

  • Evil
  • Sorrow
  • Unhappiness
  • Formality
  • Sophistication
  • Power

Basically, all negative feelings end up being associated with black. In fact, when combined with other colors, black inverts all positive meanings.

For this reason, it is associated with introverted people. However, shades of black inspire feelings of elegance, power, individualism and even protest or rebellion.

Colors influence us. They undoubtedly do!

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Minolta, K. (2007). Comunicación precisa de los Colores. Control de Color de La Percepción a La Instrumentación.
  • Golden, C. J. (1999). Test de colores y palabras (Stroop). TEA Ediciones.
  • Martínez-Cañellas, A. (1979). Psicología del color. Plástica/Dinámica.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.