This post is part of the Color Meaning Blog Series, detailing the meanings associated with colors such as red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, grey, black, white, brown, pink, turquoise, gold, silver, and beige.
Blue represents both the sky and the sea, and is associated with open spaces, freedom, intuition, imagination, expansiveness, inspiration, and sensitivity. Blue also represents meanings of depth, trust, loyalty, sincerity, wisdom, confidence, stability, faith, heaven, and intelligence.
The color blue has positive affects on the mind and the body. As the color of the spirit, it invokes rest and can cause the body to produce chemicals that are calming and exude feelings of tranquility. Blue helps to slow human metabolism, is cooling in nature, and helps with balance and self-expression. Blue is also an appetite suppressant.
However not all blues are serene and sedate. Electric or brilliant blues become dynamic and dramatic, an engaging color that expresses exhilaration. Also, some shades of blue or the use of too much blue may come across as cold or uncaring, and can dampen spirits.
Blue can be strong and steadfast or light and friendly. Blue is used to symbolize piety and sincerity in heraldry. The color blue in many cultures is significant in religious beliefs, brings peace, or is believed to keep the bad spirits away. In Iran, blue is the color of mourning while in the West the something blue bridal tradition represents love.
The blue color communicates significance, importance, and confidence without creating somber or sinister feelings. This is where the corporate blue power suit and the blue uniforms of police officers and firefighter came from. Considered a highly corporate color, blue is often associated with intelligence, stability, unity, and conservatism.
Too much blue can create feelings of melancholy, negativity, sadness, self-righteousness, and self-centeredness. Too little blue brings about qualities of suspicion, depression, stubbornness, timidity, and unreliability.
Blue gemstones are believed to aid in creating calm and relaxation in crisis situations or chaotic situations, to open the flow of communication between loved ones, to feel genuinely inspired, and to gain the courage to speak from the heart.
Different shades, tints, and hues of blue have different meanings. For example, dark blue can be seen as elegant, rich, sophisticated, intelligent, and old-fashioned, royal blue can represent superiority, and light blue can mean honesty and trustworthiness.
Other meanings associated with the color blue:
- Combining the colors red, white, and blue create a patriotic color palette for the United States, mirroring the colors in the American Flag.
- Navy blue and white, when used together, create a nautical, oceanic color palette that often represents sailing, and sailors.
- The terms “feeling blue” or “getting the blues” refers to the extreme calm feelings associated with blue, such as sadness and depression.
- The saying “out of the blue” is used in reference to something unexpected.
- The expression “singing the blues” references a person who is complaining about their circumstances.
- The phrase “true blue” stands for someone who is loyal, trustworthy, and faithful.
- The term “blueblood” refers to a person of royal, noble, or superior birth.
- The saying “baby blues” is used to describe the sadness that women feel after giving birth. It is often used in reference to post-partum depression.
- A “blue ribbon” represents the best, first place, top prize, or number one.
- The expression “into the blue” means entering the unknown or uncertainty, not knowing what you’re walking into.
- The phrase “blue Monday” means feeling sad, often the feelings experienced when the weekend is over and the workweek begins.
- The term “blue laws” refers to laws that were originally passed to enforce specific moral standards.
- The saying “blue language” refers to using profanity.
- The “Bluebook” is known as a register of people of significance in social standing. Later, the term Bluebook was adapted by the car industry as the name of the registry listing vehicle values.
- The Blues is a music style characterized by the sometimes sad or down focus and melancholy melodies.
Additional words that represent different shades, tints, and values of the color blue: sapphire, azure, beryl, cerulean, cobalt, indigo, navy, royal, sky blue, baby blue, robin’s egg blue, cyan, cornflower blue, midnight blue, slate, steel blue, Prussian blue.