What Makes Blue the World’s Favorite Color?

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Colors influence a person’s moods, habits, behavior, and how a person lives his or her life. In the end, colors matter. One of the earliest questions that children learn to respond to is what is your favorite color. What we wear, our lifestyle, the choices we make in terms of what we buy, etc, all have their foundations in color. Color dictates our lives, so to speak. Color is very important as a concept as it is very closely tied to politics and national identity. In recent years, some colors dominate more than others. We have favorites, for sure, but there is a consensus that the color blue is the favorite in many countries across the globe.

It is interesting to note that for countries where it is not normally dominant in relation to a country’s culture or tradition, that blue is a very sought-after hue. For instance, in China, green, yellow and red are auspicious. Still, most Chinese people choose blue as their preferred color. Their second best is red. This is true for Hong Kong as well.

Why blue?

Many people think of blue as a color of nature. For one thing, it is the color of the sky and water. Spiritualists believe that blue is the color of heaven and all authority. It stands for peace and a sense of infinity. In our modern world, it is the color of denim and the”blues,” signifying a sad musical genre. Of course, people in the music industry will agree that it’s one of the most influential and popular genres of music that has ever evolved. People also associate the color with beautiful objects and pretty blue things, such as bluebells and sapphires. A much sought-after eye color also happens to be blue.

With all the disputes between countries and other international problems, there is one thing everyone agrees on. This has to do with our favorite color. Apparently, yes you guessed right, it’s blue! In a series of ambitious surveys that traversed ten countries, it was revealed that everyone loves the color blue. The survey stretched across four continents, and though this may not be exhaustive, it offers some indication of the color people love the most.

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Where is blue the best?

Polls were conducted in the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Blue was the undisputed winner in all these countries. In the United Kingdom, a resounding 33% of people named blue as their favorite. This was the highest percentage of people in any one country. In Indonesia, where the percentage of blue fans was the lowest, an astounding 22% voted it as their favorite.

In many countries, such as the far eastern ones, blue still comes out on top. This is despite the fact that these countries are steeped in tradition. In countries like China, Hong Kong, and Singapore, earth elements are considered culturally important. The elements of wood and fire are significant here, and the colors associated with these are red and yellow. Yet, these countries select blue as their favorite. More than a quarter of the people surveyed in China categorically chose blue as their top color.

Gender differences

Some gender-based differences were revealed in the survey. In the United Kingdom, more women than men prefer blue. Here, women categorically state that they love traditional, pretty blue things. This is reflected in the old English custom of brides wearing “something blue”.  In the United States of America, the reverse is true, with more men selecting blue as their favorite. Overall, on a global scale, more women than men prefer the color blue.

Age groups and politics

Blue comes out on top across age groups and ethnic groups as well. Blue is the favorite of whites, blacks, and Hispanics alike in the United States of America. In a surprising outcome of the survey, in a country often described as reds (Republicans) versus blues (Democrats), blue is the color of choice for both.

More surveys have been done, in which thirty countries were involved. Sociologists have pointed to the fact that most people select a color of choice based on their preference for other aspects of life. Consequently, as most Americans love nature, in terms of lakes and other water bodies, they tend to select blue as their preferential color. In a 2003 study by researcher, Joe Hallock, it was discovered that blue was the most popular color among survey participants across 22 countries. Interestingly, another striking finding was that it was never selected as the least favorite color.

Children and the color blue

It was also found that children liked the color more than other colors too. Perhaps, their parents did, and this inadvertently influenced them. In two separate studies, in 1993, and in 2000, the Crayola company revealed that blue was the most favored color of their paints and crayons across the United States of America.

Analytical reasoning behind choosing blue

People of logic argue that there are a lot of very analytical explanations as to why people may like a certain color over another. They say that pretty blue things have nothing to do with scientific reasoning. Specific hues, shades and colors are excessively used in certain contexts and this creates a bias for those. They say that the color blue is a good example of such an argument. When certain colors have meaning in our lives, either learned by experience or innate, we will perceive those as close to our hearts. We don’t even have to think twice about our favorites then. Our responses come out almost automatically. Web designers always choose blue as their favorites. The color often shows up as one of the most frequently used in web design and graphics.

Blue is popular

Maybe blue is the color of choice for many because of its popularity across contexts. Most people prefer blue ink in pens to black. Blue is also one of the best-sellers in the fields of architecture and interior design. It is a color that is associated with freedom and liberal thought in politics. The color blue, as Hallock found in his research (2003) seemed to signify class and dignity. It is a color, he discovered, that does not appear cheap or crude to people. This may be true of other colors like black, but blue is more popular – remember, while black is smart to many, it is also associated with death and mourning.

Culturally popular color

Culturally, there may be reasons why blue is so beloved. It appears to be related to sound health and immortality in Eastern societies. In Western thought, it holds a place that invokes trust and security, resulting in peace and a soothing aura. It has, since time immemorial, been associated with serenity and cleansing qualities. As serene as the sky and as cleansing as the water are often spoken of in spiritual books and written works. Blue, as a result, encompasses positive qualities for the well-being of the human race.


However, you choose to explain it, the preference for blue may be safely explained as partly instinctual, partly biased culturally, and partly acquired due to your personal taste and preference. Studies dating back to 1941 show that blue is a favorite. Remember, there was less peer pressure and internet influence then. As recently as 2017, another study showed that blue is everyone’s favorite. Pretty blue things aside, if the color blue was on social media, it would unequivocally get the most likes!

Written by Lily Jameson

Lily is a writer and artist with a background in creative arts and design. She believes that both her passions complement each other really well. She often says that what she finds difficult to express with her words, she does so through her art. As a young professional in the digital world, she is well-versed in writing for all kinds of digital platforms, and has had the opportunity to have her writings published across multiple fields. She loves to write about what she knows best – art, culture, and history – and her expertise in these areas reflect in her writing.

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