As part of my colour-themed posts, I got to thinking about whether there’s a big difference in colour preferences between the sexes. Over the past week or so, I have been researching a little about colour and gender to see if I could find any studies. There are a few studies that have been conducted over the past couple of decades which draw some variations.

First of all, the most interesting factor is that blue is the most preferred colour for both men and women. Maybe this is obvious as if you ask people their favourite colour, many do say blue! Blue also comes in variety of different shades from turquoise, to royal blue through to dark navy.

In the studies I found, I noticed that not all colours were included however. Especially relevant is pink, as it’s the opposite to blue in gender stereotypes and popular with women. I am amazed that it doesn’t appear! It’s certainly near the top of my favourite colours list.

This study was created by Joe Hallock a few years back:

Favourite colour by gender:

favourite colour by gender

From my personal experience with my clients’ colour preferences, I would concur with blue being the most popular colour choice for both men and women. It’s a safe, dependable colour which is inoffensive and therefore popular. See my post on the colour blue for your brand to learn more ››

Thinking more about offensive colours – colours that put people off – can you guess which is the most off-putting colour? I know for me it’s brown for it’s obvious connotations. From Hallock’s study, it seems that most people and both sexes are in agreement with me – it is brown. Closely followed by orange for both – I am positive this colour study would have given very different results in the 60s!

Furthermore, something I found interesting is that purple did not feature at all for men on their favourite colour. However, 22% had it as their least favourite colour. Hence, demonstrating that if a brand is geared mainly for men – purple should be avoided.

Most disliked colour by gender:

most disliked colour by gender