Red theory and its application in design

For a very long time, red has been a captivating and inspirational color that is used extensively in design, art, and culture. It arouses strong feelings and can represent anything from danger and excitement to passion and love. Gaining a deeper understanding of the psychology of red can significantly improve its use in design by revealing more about how the color influences mood and perception in people.

The theory of red is a multifaceted concept that includes its practical applications in design, cultural significance, and psychological effects. Red is known to psychologically raise heart rates, pique appetites, and grab attention. This makes it a great option for designs that want to draw attention to certain parts or evoke a sense of urgency and energy. Its intensity necessitates careful application, though, to prevent overpowering viewers.

Red has diverse cultural connotations all over the world. While it can represent luck and prosperity in Eastern cultures, it is frequently connected to love and romance in Western cultures. By using these cultural connections, designers can produce more meaningful and appropriately contextualized designs. Red, for example, can evoke sentiments of warmth and love when used in branding for a Valentine’s Day campaign, and it can also evoke celebration and good fortune when used in Chinese New Year decorations.

In practical terms, red can be applied in a variety of ways to different design fields. Red can be used in interior design to warm up a room or establish a focal point. It can communicate a brand’s bold personality or help important information stand out in graphic design. Red clothing makes a statement and exudes confidence and allure in the fashion world. Designers can use red to enhance their overall design objectives by knowing red theory, which will help them make more informed decisions.

Aspect Description
Definition of Red Theory Red Theory explores the impact of the color red in design, emphasizing its ability to attract attention and evoke strong emotions.
Psychological Effects Red can stimulate energy, passion, and excitement but can also provoke aggression and anxiety if overused.
Applications in Design Red is often used to create focal points, highlight important elements, and evoke a sense of urgency or excitement in designs.
Combining with Other Colors Red pairs well with neutral colors for a balanced look or with contrasting colors like green for a bold statement.
Examples in Design Red is commonly used in logos, advertisements, and call-to-action buttons to capture attention and drive engagement.

Red history

Various shades of Red accompany people"s lives since ancient times. In a primitive society, this color occupied a dominant position, associated with sacrifices, hunting and battles. Initially, the blood of animals served as a sample for paint. But to apply drawings to the skin and stones, a more persistent pigment was required. Then a person began to use clay, ocher, carmine and stems of plants under the name Maren as a coloring substance. With the origin of ancient Greek mythology, red began to identify with the image of the goddess of love of Aphrodite. Scarlet rose as a gift at that time was considered a recognition of love. Later in ancient Rome, the scarlet tone began to be associated with fire and military campaigns. They were noted by the commander-winners who favored the god of war. A rich ruby ​​tone symbolized power and power. Only particularly distinguished citizens had the right to wear scarlet clothes. During this period, ruby ​​accessories become an indicator of the status of their owner.

The most complex kner is red. In light of this, naming the most fashionable shades became necessary as the fashion industry and architectural design began to flourish.

  • Bismarck-Furiozo;
  • Cardinal;
  • Fiery Magenta Cryol;
  • Pink forest;
  • Sangina;
  • Scarlet;
  • The color of the fuss;
  • Hat of Santa Claus.

A vivid scarlet was a symbol of beauty in Rus". This is linked to numerous phraseological units and stable expressions, such as "Red girl," "Red Square," "Summer Red," and "Red Corner."

Wearing colorful clothing, hair bows, and rushmen with scarlet embroidery or a ruby shade were all festive. Onion husks were the traditional source of the pigment. Later on, bright mercury (known as Kinovar) entered daily life.

These days, interior decorating, architecture, and the textile industry all make extensive use of scarlet paint. Additionally, you can realize the most amazing ideas thanks to the most recent advancements in paint production and tinting technologies.


The scarlet represented strength and wisdom for many centuries. To emphasize their exceptional status, the kings used scarlet velvet to decorate their clothes and crows. In addition, the scarlet kner represented fire and flame.

Vibrant scarlet is a color associated with martyrdom in Christianity and is frequently used in church rituals. This tone is simultaneously connected to sin and a fiery hell. Ruby colors are used in the clothing of Catholic cardinals.

The color was designated as the warning element at the start of XX in. It was first applied to prohibitive signage on roadways and road markings. Eventually, the red flag started to be seen as a representation of the revolution.

This type is linked by contemporary designers to inner strength, courage, leadership, and passion.

The "Red Theory" in design examines the potent effects of the color red, which is unlike any other color in that it arouses intense feelings and draws attention. It can be used to create warmth and intimacy in interior spaces as well as to incite excitement and energy in marketing campaigns. Designers can strategically use the color red to improve aesthetics, encourage engagement, and effectively communicate specific messages by knowing how red affects mood and behavior.

Red color in psychology and types of people who prefer it

When it comes to color perception, psychologists focus especially on the color red. Charming, self-assured, and tenacious individuals with a preference for this tone exhibit clear leadership traits.

However, this color also represents human intolerance, irritability, over-emotion, and occasionally the presence of cruelty in cruel behavior, in addition to its positive aspects.


Red-colored lovers aim to rule and take center stage all the time. On the contrary, they tend to think highly of themselves and do not suffer from low self-esteem.

There is always some selfishness in the lives of men who favor scarlet in their wardrobe and daily interactions. These individuals prioritize their personal goals over those of their family, friends, and the public, putting the latter last.

They climb the career ladder with ease. When determination and purpose are combined, work is logically successful.


"Fighting girl" is a good way to describe the ruby tint lover. Women who like this color stand out for their sexuality, energy, and self-assurance.

They are only guided by their own opinions and do not perceive any limitations or barriers. These women constantly aim for the greatest outcome.

With a strong sense of self-worth and a clear understanding of their objectives, they approach their goal without looking for roadblocks. A person’s propensity for cruelty and aggression can be conveyed through red tones.


If the child tells you that red is his favorite color, you can draw a rough picture of him right away. These kids are gregarious, overly energetic, and frequently hyperactive.

Such children are referred to as nonsense by others. They are tough to control since they detest being told what to do. Children commit rash acts because they want to shock people and be in the spotlight.

The effect of red on humans

In the past ten years, color therapy has become more and more popular among psychologists and medical professionals. Impact on an individual with varying shades is regarded as a successful supplemental therapeutic approach.

An individual can enhance their physical or mental well-being, but they won’t be able to eradicate illnesses by introducing certain colors into their life. When compared to other tones, scarlet has the most noticeable and potent difference.

To health

Researchers have found that thinking about red causes the body’s metabolic processes to kick in, improving blood circulation by raising heart rate. The impact of color on muscle activity is beneficial and causes the blood to release adrenaline.

Using red tones in color therapy, patients with compromised musculoskeletal systems receive rehabilitation.

However, the impact ought to be applied sparingly or chosen to blend in with the muted colors of the surroundings. Prolonged exposure to intense red hues can have a negative impact on both physical and psychological functions.

To the psyche

There is a lot of debate among physicians regarding this color’s psychological effects.

Some contend that the nervous system’s stimulation brought on by scarlet pigment improves mental health:

  • makes a person more active and cheerful;
  • liberates and gives a feeling of freedom;
  • gives a charge of vigor;
  • causes appetite;
  • Increases performance.

The opposing viewpoint is based on the idea that bright colors overly stimulate nerve fibers, which wears people out and increases agitation and aggressiveness.

Red -colored tables and shades

Standards and codes for color were created to make working with color easier. You can quickly select the appropriate shade and ensure that the color matches the sample with their assistance.

Ral palette

The five palettes in the German RAL color table are Classic, Design, Digital, Effect, and Plastics. The most widely used and adaptable is RAL Classic.

You can rapidly and precisely identify the desired tone by using the numerical codes that each color in the table corresponds to. It’s practical, to be sure. It can be challenging to commit the names of the tints to memory.

The palette consists of five colors from other groups, many of which contain scarlet pigment, and twenty-five red tones, denoted by the indices 3000–3033.

The latter consist of:

  • RAL 2001 (red-orange);
  • RAL 2002 (scarlet);
  • RAL 2005 (fluorescent red);
  • RAL 2008 (bright red orange);
  • RAL 4001 (red-lilac);
  • RAL 4002 (red-violet);
  • RAL 4004 (burgundy-violet);
  • RAL 8012 (red-brown).

The primary tool used by furniture makers and interior designers is the RAL palette. It is possible to arrange different design elements in a single color scheme because of the ordering of the tints reduced to the table. This method helps create the intended interior in the smallest details while saving a great deal of time.

HTML codes

HTML flowers table offers three formats for simultaneously encoding colors:

  1. HEX represents each shade in the form of 6 characters, where each of the 3 pairs of numbers indicates the intensity of one of the main colors: red, green and blue. So, the code of pure red tone will have the form #ff0000. According to his record, the red pigment is 100%allocated, and the green and blue – 0%.
  2. RGB displays colors according to the same principle as the previous format, but uses 3-digit numbers for encoding. The highest pigment concentration is valuable 255. Thus, the red code will look like this: 255.0.0. This value shows that a pure color is present in a shade of 100%, and blue and green are absent.
  3. HSV is the most unpopular format, t.To. To record the tint, it immediately uses 3 different parameters from each other: color tone, saturation and brightness. The tone is determined by the position on the color spectral circle, for red this value is 0. Saturation and brightness are indicated as a percentage of 0 to 100. Classic red in HSV format will be recorded as "0,100,100".


This color scheme is intended for printing purposes. The primary colors are blue, purple, yellow, and black.

The amount of each color, expressed as a percentage of the tone’s maximum concentration, is needed to create a particular shade. You need to combine purple and yellow pigments in equal amounts to achieve a classic red. This is how the red tone formula will appear: M100 Y100 K0 C0.

Getting red from natural dyes

They can obtain paint from them because of the following natural ingredients:

  • berries;
  • beet;
  • onion husks;
  • Pow-Broughtwood.

The juice and tissues of these plants contain the pigment; the ingredients must be thoroughly combined to release it.

You can make reddish-brown paint by wetting clay with water.

  • How to get black;
  • How to get brown;
  • How to get a gray color;
  • How to get blue;
  • How to get a pink color;
  • How to get yellow;
  • How to get an orange color;
  • How to get burgundy color;
  • How to get purple;
  • How to get beige;

Obtaining shades of red by mixing paints

Finding the right paint shade is not difficult. You can mix your own paint or hire professionals to help you achieve the desired composition’s tint.

In the first instance, you can be certain that the client will get the shade he requires when the tint is finished. When painting by hand, precise paint volume measurement is necessary, and even when proportions are followed, the outcome might not be what is intended.


The presence of the yellow pigment in the composition distinguishes scarlet from classic red. It’s critical to precisely observe the proportion in order to achieve the right shade: Three parts of the basic pigment are mixed with one part yellow colorant. A rich, brilliant tone with an orange tinge should result from mixing.

Soft red

Though it has a more saturated tone, this color is similar to pink. It must be obtained by muffleing the basic red. Pink or white is the reason for this.

Pink paint will give the eye tone a pastel, pleasing effect.

One must exercise caution when handling white. There’s a good chance you won’t pay attention to the ratio and the result will be a pure pink tone.


Orange necessitates combining equal parts red and yellow, unlike scarlet. Sometimes even a little bit more is needed to achieve a true shade of yellow.

Small amounts of the yellow tone are added to the primary paint, so it’s easy to upset the harmony and turn the color toward the intended orange tint rather than the desired one.


There is another term for this tone: brick. A drop of brown kner is added to bring it to the scarlet base. If the color is not dark enough after mixing, a tiny bit of black paint is added.


Many people associate grenade shade with the deep burgundy-brown hue found in grenade grains. This definition is incorrect; the semi-collet stone, which has a bright color with an orange undertone, is honored by the name of the color.

To get it, first obtain an orange color, and then gradually add red to it until the desired ring is achieved. Usually, to further dull the paint, a tiny bit of brown tone is added, which muffles the paint’s brightness.


Bordeaux wines have a deep, rich reddish-violet color that is characteristic of the region. Red, brown, and tiny amounts of blue and yellow troops are combined to create it. Bright red and blue can be combined in a 3:1 ratio with a colder burgundy tint.


You can combine a small amount of blue with a red base to create a visually pleasing cherry tone. It’s crucial to avoid adding too much blue tint or it will turn purple. The saturation and depth will be added by a drop of black color.

Other shades

The color black-red is fashionable for both home décor and clothing. It can be created by adding a small amount of red pigment to a black base. To achieve a colder tone, some blue drops are also added to the paint.

Red oxide has a color that is almost brown, but it has a noticeable scarlet undertone. This shade is created by adding a scarlet and slightly black tone to a base brown tone.

Flame Magent: a joyful reddish-pink kner. Paints in the colors pink, yellow, and white are combined to get the base color.

Burgundy kner with an obvious pink undertone is called Cordovansky. visually appears softer than traditional burgundy, but a little darker.

Pastel colors with a pleasing combination of rich scarlet, orange, and pink make up Fiery Sienna Kryol. looks amazing in light-colored interiors.

  • Shades of green;
  • Shades of red;
  • Shades of brown;
  • Shades of black;
  • Shades of blue;
  • Shades of blue;

What colors are combined with red

Ruby goes well with a variety of colors. It appears useful when using troops that contrast and when using different tones of the same color scheme.

Contrast interweaving

A combination of colors found in opposing regions of the color circle is an effective design reception. Classic green will be a contrasting tone for red. Their combination will enable simultaneous focus at two design points.

Red and white and red-black mixes can be considered contrasting combinations. Vibrant components against a serene white backdrop appear juicy and give the design a fun, upbeat vibe.

Black and scarlet are linked to conservatism and the Gothic style. It has been many hundreds of years since this duet became obsolete. The scarlet tone is as much visible in its saturation and piercing when combined with black.

Red-black combinations are now utilized in interior design as well as apparel design.

With similar shades

At least four similar shades—two medium tones, one dark—are used to create a voluminous composition. A traditional pure color can be added as an extra component.

Successful combinations and their RGB codes as examples are as follows:

  1. Light-coral (240, 128, 128) + deep coral (255,64,64) + cardinal (196.30.58) + red oxide (100, 36.36).
  2. Fridged rose (191,100,100) + Chinese red (190,19,45) + raspberry wine color (182.55.83) + Tibetan red (120.42.57).
  3. Dubbari (242,95,102) + cranberry (187.74.77) + red-pink (201,35,81) + anemon (132,44,72).
  4. Bright cherry (222,49,99) + medium karmin (175.64.53) + tangerine tango (225,85,61) + pearlescent-brown (114,20,34).
  5. Siena Zhenya (233,116,81) + chestnut chuol (188,93,88) + saturated purple-red (179,40,81) + cordovansky (137.63.69).

Other harmonious combinations

Designers typically follow patterns of compatible shades and color harmony when selecting a color scheme. Three kings, equally spaced apart in the color circle, are part of the triangular compability scheme.

This principle states that yellow and blue complement scarlet quite beautifully. The orange-yellow, bright blue, and red salad combinations are determined by the color selection’s square scheme.

Red theory’s strong influence on human emotions and perceptions is revealed by its investigation in the field of design. Red is a color that is notable for its capacity to draw attention, arouse strong emotions, and, depending on its shade and context, convey a range of messages. Red has the power to change an area or object and affect how it is perceived. It can be deep and passionate or bright and energizing.

Red can be used in interior design to make a statement, draw attention to a feature, or draw people into a space. Because of its cozy and welcoming qualities, it’s frequently used in areas intended for social interaction and activity, like living rooms and kitchens. But using red correctly is important; too much of it can be overwhelming and cause unease or aggressive feelings.

Red is widely used in branding and marketing to convey excitement and urgency. Due to its ability to pique appetite, this color is frequently associated with food brands and advertising. Red is often used by sectors looking to convey a strong image because it can also stand for power and dependability.

Red is a color that works well in both fashion and product design. Red is a color that designers frequently use to draw attention to and enhance the appearance of products. It can add a daring edge to clothing and accessories, signifying luxury and sophistication in style.

In the end, using red theory in design emphasizes how important it is to use color carefully and strategically. Red is still a powerful and dynamic color in the designer’s palette, whether it is used to energize an area, establish a strong brand identity, or increase the allure of a product. Designers can fully utilize red to produce powerful and significant designs by comprehending its psychological effects and cultural connotations.

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Maria Vlasova

Chemist-technologist, expert on paint and varnish materials. I will help you figure out the compositions of paints, their characteristics and choose the best option for your purposes.

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