A Look Back at the Pantone Colours of the Year

Last week Pantone announced their 2019 colour of the year: 'Living Coral', a soothing peach shade with orange undertones.

Pantone chooses the colour based on trend analysis. Their experts turn to art, fashion, design, travel and anything that holds influence in our cultural landscape.

For example, the iPhone XR, released in October, came out with a coral version. Were they on to something?

source:  Apple

source: Apple

About Living Coral

“PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral emits the desired, familiar, and energizing aspects of color found in nature. In its glorious, yet unfortunately more elusive, display beneath the sea, this vivifying and effervescent color mesmerizes the eye and mind. Lying at the center of our naturally vivid and chromatic ecosystem, PANTONE Living Coral is evocative of how coral reefs provide shelter to a diverse kaleidoscope of color.”

2018: Ultra Violet

Think Prince and Jimi Hendrix, and this is the colour that comes to mind. This deep shade of purple was a bold move for Pantone, often seeing softer shades in the past. The colour also comes from the obsessions we have with the greater galaxy.

"A dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade, PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us toward the future."

2017: Greenery

This grassy colour inspired by nature and feels like a beautiful spring morning. The year was full of environmental efforts, healthier food trends and exploring the great outdoors.

"A refreshing and revitalizing shade, Greenery is symbolic of new beginnings."

2016: Rose Quartz & Serenity

For the first time ever, Pantone named 2 colours that match well together. This soft pink and blue find a calming balance between warm and cool. Pantone hit the nail on the head, with this colour combo seen everywhere. From the runway to music videos, pop culture certainly embraced these shades. Also - this is what propelled the “millennial pink” movement, which is still talked about to this day.


"Joined together, Rose Quartz and Serenity demonstrate an inherent balance between a warmer embracing rose tone and the cooler tranquil blue, reflecting connection and wellness as well as a soothing sense of order and peace."

2015: Marsala

A nice reddish brown colour that is definitely more muted than we’re used to seeing. This was a great year for makeup trends embracing this shade. (Pantone has even collaborated with Sephora)!  


Pantone has even collaborated with Sephora!  


"Much like the fortified wine that gives Marsala its name, this tasteful hue embodies the satisfying richness of a fulfilling meal while its grounding red-brown roots emanate a sophisticated, natural earthiness."

Here’s a look at all the Pantone CotY from 2000-2018:

Add living coral to that and it’s complete. Predictions for 2020 anyone?

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