The Color Psychology of Green

What is the Color Psychology for Green?

The Color Psychology of Green

Color psychology is the study of specific hues and their effect on human behavior.

Color plays an essential role in creating certain moods, conveying information and influencing decisions, feelings and behaviors.

For instance, color preferences may have an influence on the products that people choose to purchase, the way they decorate their homes or the brands they are drawn to and the clothes they choose to wear.

Color psychology is also relevant in many ways to image consulting services. Many of us work with our clients on color analysis and choose not only the shades that suit them best but also how to combine those colors for maximum effect. Other consultants help clients with personal branding and professional presence.

This includes how to project the messages they want to send in any given situation and color is one of the most useful tools we have.

For example, if a client needs to look more authoritative and credible we will choose darker shades in her palette, among other changes; to look more approachable we may recommend softer or lighter shades.

What is the Color Psychology of Green?

If color is thought to play a role in your mood and your emotions and the messages you project, what is it about a color that elicits reactions? Take green for example.

How does green affect you? In many situations, your reactions are related to the color’s intensity: its brightness or softness.

It is an easy color for the eye to absorb in all shades and bright and light colors “advance” or are noticed first; deep and soft colors “recede” or fade a little more into the background.

As a general guideline people choose colors for their home that evoke a positive feeling or mood, such as painting their bedroom walls soft green, which may help with feelings of calmness and sleepiness. Teal, a deeper blue-green and turquoise, a lighter green actually suit many people and are also two very popular colors because of the pleasant affect the colors have on the mood.

Frequently, your reactions are the result of cultural influences and current or past experiences. For some, it often provokes an association with nature, recalling trees, plants and green grass. This eye-brain-memory association has been used extensively in branding to advertise and market environmentally safe cleaning and other products.

As our concern over global warming caused by pollution and human intervention grows stronger, the green movement is building a massive following in the first world countries. We strive to be more environmentally responsible and healthy and our diets are now embracing greens, vegetables and fruit.

Avocadoes for instance are enjoying quite a moment, even on toast!

Research has shown that the color may improve your reading ability and students have found that when a sheet of transparent paper is placed over what they are reading it will increase their reading speed as well as their comprehension.

In the 15th century, green was the choice for wedding gowns, because it is a symbol of fertility. When decorating, light tones are often used because of their calming effect.

For instance, the term “green room” which is a holding area for those who are waiting to appear on a television show, is painted the color to help with concentration and calm the nerves of guests.

Dark greens are soothing, so if you tend to feel nervous or anxious, consider wearing soft or deep shades to help you feel relaxed. This effect is thought to be due again to the association of green in nature.

In addition to its calming, tranquil and relaxing influence, the color in various shades is thought to affect a variety of emotions and behaviors including more negative associations. For example, in very ancient superstition, green is described as being associated with jealousy as the phrase “green with envy” might suggest.

Other connotations of green

Excitement – Although some people find that green is relaxing, other people may find it exciting, especially if it is a vibrant shade which could evoke Springtime, a refreshing sense of renewal after the drabness of Winter. Those who find green exciting seem to get energized, inspired, and feel motivated when they encounter bright greens.

Compassion – Some people who see green feel compassion and they see those who are wearing green as being helpful, kind, sympathetic, and caring.

Optimism – The color green evokes a feeling of hopefulness, responsibility, wealth, forgiveness, comfort and energy; all of which can be characteristics of someone who is optimistic.

What do Other Colors Mean?

Color perception is highly subjective and certain colors may have an ancient universal significance, such as the association of green and jealousy. As marketing specialists know, the way that our brain perceives color has an impact on and can manipulate our decision making.

We are unconsciously persuaded by colors we and reject those we dis and this in turn affects not only in our mood and emotions but also our buying practices.

It seems that we react to color much more than we realize and a study of color psychology and the meaning we assign to color would certainly enhance the quality of our daily lives.

To give you a better understanding of how color affects you and your surroundings, below is a brief explanation of what other colors mean.

Red – love, anger, and passion

Orange – happiness, energy, and vitality

Yellow – deceit, hope, and happiness

Blue – responsible, calm, and sadness

Purple – royalty, creativity, and wealth

White – cleanliness, virtue, and purity

Black – elegance, mystery, and evil

Gray – formality, sophistication, moody and conservative


The Psychology of Design: The Color Green

The Color Psychology of Green

Color is very powerful. I am enjoying many colors in my garden as I write today. I choose the colors in my garden carefully.

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Pops of red, fuschia, yellow, and purple against various shades of green. Light greens, dark greens, even variegated greens. All of these colors combine to evoke feelings of relaxation, peace, and harmony.

I recall a young man walking past one afternoon who stopped and told me how he enjoyed my garden because it, “Filled his soul with joy.” Wow — that is the power of color!

How Do Colors Work in Marketing?

Marketers can take advantage of the emotions evoked by color. The use of colors can help people decide to buy from you. According to our friends at SmallBizTrends:

“Color has been known to have a powerful psychological impact on people’s behavior and decisions. And this knowledge has been harnessed all too well in marketing psychology by designers and marketers a.

Color can often be the sole reason someone purchases a product.

In a survey, 93 percent of buyers said they focus on visual appearance, and close to 85 percent claim color is a primary reason when they make a purchase!

 Let’s Talk About Green

Green is a color that can evoke powerful emotions. It is a dominant color in nature that makes you think of growth. Think of nature and see the incredible variety of shades of green expressing renewal and life. Green evokes a feeling of abundance and is associated with refreshment and peace, rest and security.

Green helps people feel rested and secure. People are invited to wait in the “green room” before going on camera to relax. Many doctors even use green in their offices to put patients at ease. Green encourages a balance in your brain that leads to decisiveness. However, green may also be perceived negatively when associated with materialism, envy, and possessiveness.

Green is a mixture of the two primary colors blue and yellow. Blue is often used to create a sense of security and trust in a brand. (Check out this article to learn more about the color blue in marketing).

The color yellow represents optimism and youthfulness, and is often used to grab attention. Blue and yellow are somewhat opposite in the emotions they evoke.

Green is the color that combines them in various shades to create even more variations of emotion.

Lighter greens that lean more to the yellow end of the spectrum are associated more closely with freshness: think of the first leaves of spring. Darker greens are more closely associated with stability and growth: think of the more mature green leaves of summer. Green comes in many shades and variations:

The color green can be associated with the word “go” as in, “We have the green light to go ahead.”

Green can also be associated with environmental initiatives: “We’re going green.”

It’s hard to go wrong with green. With so many hues, green is an extremely flexible color. The color green brings to mind different associations.

Source: Iconic Fox


The green color palate of Starbucks was introduced so as to represent growth, freshness, uniqueness, and prosperity. Not only does Starbucks use green in its logo, it also uses the same color predominantly in its stores to promote relaxation.

John Deere

The green colors in the John Deere logo remind us of fresh cut grass. The yellow puts one in mind of a harvest-ready field of corn. One theory for use of green in the John Deere color palate is that it is the opposite of the color used for its competitor, International Harvester, which is red (read more about the color red in design here).

British Petroleum (BP)

According to the creator of the latest BP logo, the design includes a “stylized sunflower symbolizing the sun’s energy, while the color green reflects the brand’s environmental sensitivity.”


GoDaddy recently updated their logo to create a feeling of newness. The color of green used in the newest iteration of their logo is bright and fresh and may also bring to mind a green light, meaning “to go,” as in GoDaddy.


Green can also be used in design to bring attention to calls to action. Some examples here include:


The use of green on the Evernote site is bright and rich. The color matches the green in the Evernote logo. Evernote also uses green in the design of the page. The feelings evoked are of freshness and youth. The use of the green letters against the white background highlights the CTA to “sign up for free.”


As in the Evernote example, Treehouse uses the same color in their logo as their CTA. This time, it is white letters against a green background. The use of green in this example makes one feel that they are saving money (also green) when they choose to “start your free trial.”


OptinMonster uses green consistently for all of their primary call-to-action buttons. This way it is perfectly clear what the user should do: click the “Get OptinMoster Now” button.


What catches your eye in this example? The use of green in this CTA is a calming green against the brightly colored red and orange background. The green really pops out in this example. Spotify is using color very effectively to get your attention and give you a sense of ease to get started with their product.

TD Ameritrade

When you are talking about investments, you may want your audience to think about green as in money, or green as in growth.

TD Ameritrade uses green effectively to steer users in that direction with their use of green in their CTAs, logo, and headers.

The shade of green they use is from the middle of the spectrum with a good balance of yellow and blue. The green pops on the white background.

Green Considerations

As you can see, there are many cases of green being a great choice in design. However, there are some things to keep in mind when using green.

Different shades of green words on a green or green-patterned background can be very hard to read. Adding more contrast makes it easier for the reader to see.

Some neon shades of green can be eye-catching. Others can be irritating and quickly tire the eyes.

Green used with other colors such as red can remind people of holidays.

It’s Easy Being Green

When it comes to color, the deliberate, well-thought-out use of various shades can significantly impact your market. Use the versatile color of green on a CTA to give people the “green light” to sign up or subscribe. Post something green on social media to help your followers relax or to understand your commitment to “being green.”

How have you seen green used successfully in design? Let us see how you use color in design at IMPACT Elite. I’ll be here in my garden, surrounded by green, watching for your comments.


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