How to Choose The Right Color For Your Logo & Brand

How to Choose The Right Color For Your Logo & Brand

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Creating a logo is an integral part of establishing a business. It will represent your business for years and years to come, so you should create one.

Consider the message you want to share, the values of your business, and how people can easily identify what you sell.

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However, selecting the colors for your logo holds significant importance. Choosing the right color helps you communicate specific emotions to your audience.

But to fully understand how to choose logo colors, we need to understand what emotions are associated with colors. With that, we can better use these colors in expressing a clear message to our viewers.


How to Choose Logo Colors

1. Identify What You Want Your Viewers to Feel

Identify What You Want Your Viewers to Feel

As we’ve discussed, certain colors make people feel certain emotions. Because of learned associations, personal experiences, and personal preferences, people respond somewhat similarly to specific colors.

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As a business figuring out how to choose logo color, you’ll have to use these things to your advantage.

The first step in choosing the best colors for a logo is identifying what you want your target market to feel when they see your logo.

Do you want them to feel invigorated and excited? Do you want them to feel passionate and energized? Do you want them to feel safe and calm? Or maybe you want to be perceived as regal and sophisticated?

Identifying what you want your target audience to feel and how you want to be perceived allows you to narrow down the colors you can choose.


2. Understanding Hues, Tints, Shades, and Tones

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Understanding Hues, Tints, Shades, and Tones

Let’s break down these terms one by one before discussing their importance.


Hues describe the colors that you can find on the color wheel. These are just pure colors with nothing added to them to change their properties. For example, when we say red, it’s just plain red in the color wheel.


Tints are created when you add white to a hue. Because of this, the hue lightens and desaturates. This creates a lighter color.


Shades are created when you add black to a hue. Because of this, the hue darkens and creates a more intense color.


If white is added to tints and black is added to shades, grey is added to tones. The final tone depends on how much black and white are used in the gray. Since you’re using whites and blacks, tones may be lighter or darker than the original hue.

Now that we’ve considered all that, why are these terms important? Because they also affect how your target audience perceives your logo.

For example, you choose blue as the hue for your logo because you want them to feel calm and relaxed. If you go for a deeper shade of blue, you will now convey trustworthiness and authority. But if you go for a lighter tint, you’re going to appear playful and refreshing.

Ultimately, hues, tints, shades, and tones affect how your target audience perceives your logo. Carefully and strategically thinking of how to choose a logo color will help you better communicate your message to them.


3. Understanding Color Harmony Rules

Understanding Color Harmony Rules

When choosing the colors you like, you must ensure they work together. Just choosing colors because they represent what you want your target audience to feel will not work. They must all complement each other and work together to make your logo look good.

There are 3 basic ways that you can mix your colors. These techniques are founded in color theory so you won’t go wrong if you follow them.


This is a harmonious selection of colors next to each other on the color wheel. Since they are very close, they’re likely to get along well together.


These are colors that are directly opposite to each other in the color wheel.


These are colors that are opposite one another if you put an equilateral triangle on the color wheel.

These techniques guarantee a harmonious overall look. The colors won’t clash with each other, and they will all work together to make your logo look attractive and eye-catching.


4. Deciding on the Final Color Palette

Deciding on the Final Color Palette

Now that you’ve identified the hues or colors you want to work with, the final palette is much more complicated. This is because tints, shades, and tones come into play.

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It can become overwhelming since you’re dealing with many tints, shades, and tones. Having a lot of options isn’t always the best. And just like with hues, some tints, shades, and tones don’t really go well together.

You can use Adobe Color to help identify what hues, tints, shades, and tones work well together. This online tool can help you select and customize the right hues with tints, shades, and tones.

You can also choose among various color harmony rules besides analogous, complementary, and triadic.


Now that you’re familiar with the logo colors, let’s go to the tool you’ll use to make your logo.

Your logo will go through a lot of resizing once it’s finalized. It has to fit multiple materials, documents, and advertisements, such as small business cards and a giant billboard.

You’ll have to work with vectors for your logo not to become pixelated as you resize it repeatedly.

Vector files use mathematical equations to produce an image. The lines and curves created with vector files are fixed points on a grid. Since these images are founded on mathematical formulas, they can be recalibrated to any size.

You can scale vector images up or down without impacting their quality. Vector images will remain the same compared to raster images, which become pixelated when you zoom in or out.

As for the tools that work with vector files, the first and most popular choice would be Adobe Illustrator. This tool can be technical, so you can check out Adobe Illustrator tutorials to help you get started.

Another noteworthy tool is CorelDraw. It’s a very flexible tool that works with vector files. It has page layout features and vector-based brushes to mimic traditional media but in vector.

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If these two programs are not your cup of tea, you can always look at our article on the Best Logo Design Software.


Color Psychology in Logo Design

Color physcology
How to choose a logo color

Color psychology is the study of how certain colors, hues, tints, shades, and tones impact human behavior. It studies the learned association of humans to these colors and how meaning changes across countries and cultures.

Let’s dive into the colors that are usually used in logos of businesses and understand how people perceive them.


The color blue symbolizes peace and tranquility. This probably stems from our association of blue with the ocean or deep waters.

Aside from that, blue is also associated with trustworthiness. That’s why a lot of banks use it. Choosing your logo is crucial.

Finally, it’s also associated with rest and relaxation that’s why a lot of social media logos have blue.


The color red symbolizes passion, excitement, and anger. It has a very intense color so that it can attract the attention of many viewers. It’s also a color that can be identified from very far away because it is striking.

We associate red with heightened emotions like love, anger, and passion, so many fast-food chains use red in their logos.

So if you are into the food business or planning to, be careful about how to choose logo color, as studies proved that colors can change your appetite and eating habits.


Yellow is traditionally associated with joy, friendliness, cheerfulness, and a light and good feeling. This may stem from our association of yellow with the sun.

As seasoned graphic designers, we highly recommend you use yellow if you want your logo to appear happy and youthful.


Green has always been associated with the Earth and the environment. It’s a color that symbolizes growth and sustenance.

Interestingly, it also symbolizes poison and death. This has a historical background. Back in the 18th century, a lot of people died because of a popular green dye made of arsenic.


The color orange has always been associated with playfulness and friendliness. It’s a mix of red and yellow so it has the best of both worlds.

Aside from that, in some countries, orange is associated with change. This is because the autumn or fall season has mostly orange leaves and earthy tones. It’s also associated with warmth and coziness because of the said weather.


When choosing logo colors that reflect the notions of royalty and luxury, violet is appropriate. The reason behind it also has historical significance.

Back in ancient Rome, the color purple was very hard to make. People collected thousands of marine snails so they can turn them into the Tyrian purple dye.

Because of this, the dye is very expensive and was almost exclusive to only royalty.


Brown is a very muted yet warm and comforting color. Compared to other colors, it’s less vibrant and tends to come across as serious and rugged.

Brown gives off the feeling of dependability and comfort. It also helps viewers feel stability and grounding.


Things to Avoid in Choosing a Logo Color

1. Avoid Trendy Colors

Trendy colors can be exciting for your logos because they’re in season. Aside from that, many business owners think their logo will go viral overnight because they’re using trending colors. Although it’s possible, it’s still a very slim possibility.

The problem with trendy colors is that since they’re trending, chances are there are lots of logos on the market with the same palette. It takes the uniqueness away from your logo. You’re just another logo in a sea of logos with the same color palette.

Aside from that, as quickly as trends come to be, they’ll disappear just as quickly. They’ll go out of style quickly, and your logo won’t be relevant anymore.

A logo is supposed to withstand the test of time. It won’t be relevant years from now if it’s built on something as fleeting as a trend.

Your business probably stands for a lot of things. You also probably have a lot of values that you want to communicate with your target audience. Because of this, you might have a lot of colors that you want to incorporate into your logo.

Don’t overcomplicate it. If you’re going to put too many colors into your logo, it might not look well put together. Always remember to take a step back and re-evaluate if this is really what you want. Don’t be afraid to edit your logo over and over again.

To help you identify what you need for your logo, you can check out our article on 10 Top Things to Consider Before Designing a Logo.

3. Avoid Comparing Yourself to Your Competitors

Looking at your competitors can be very tempting. After all, they succeeded in the industry so they might have done something good to succeed, right?

The problem is that you might become a carbon copy of your competitors if you look too much at them. You might lose your identity if you pattern your logo too much after theirs.

Looking for inspiration is always a good starting point. But then again, too much inspiration can lead to copying and plagiarism. That’s never a good thing. If you need to kickstart your ideas, check out our article on the 4 Logo & Branding Techniques of the World’s Leading Brands.


How to Choose The Right Color For Your Logo – Key Takeaway

Choosing a color for your logo is a vital task. Your decision on what colors to use will stay with you for the lifetime of your business. Because of this, it has to be taken seriously and with the utmost care.

Understanding what colors communicate is a significant first step in deciding what colors you’ll use for your logo. Once you decide on the hues, you should understand what tint, shade, and tone you should go for.

Don’t forget to make sure that your colors are harmonious with each other! If you’re having a hard time finding complementary colors, online tools can always help you.

Admittedly, choosing a logo color is a complicated, time-consuming, and tedious process. But despite all that, it’s a beautiful process that will help you get to know your business better.

Do you have any more tips for choosing colors for logos? Tell us in the comment section below!

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