Red vs. Blue

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Difference between Red and Blue

For most people color preferences don’t mean much other than that: personal preference. However, numerous studies have shown that colors mean different things to different people and there may be a lot more to colors than the eye can see. Take for instance the colors blue and red. Most people who like one wouldn't necessarily like the other, and more often than not, people’s preferences are somehow linked to their mannerisms and/or personalities. Let's take a look at some of the factors that go into color preferences, with a particular focus on red and blue.

Red
Blue

Emotional Impact

For many people, red is a stimulating color that perfectly embodies its correlation with excitement and/or danger. Red is the color of blood after all, so it is hardly surprising that the color evokes an emotional in almost anyone. In fact, scientific studies have shown that the color red can raise the heart rate and blood pressure of people looking at it.

It is also interesting to note that many of the body’s emotional reactions are associated with red: the flush of embarrassment and/or physical attraction, the afterglow of sex, the flushed face of exertion, and the livid crimson of rage and anger.

Blue on the other hand is almost always seen as a calming color, possibly because of its association with the clear sky and ocean water. Too much of anything is not a good thing however, and too much blue can bring about a melancholic feeling.

Society

The color red is often associated with power, which is probably it is often used as an accent for business attire, as in the case of the ubiquitous red tie with dark suit combination. Red is also often used in cases wherein there is a need to denote urgency, and it is the familiar color of stop lights, brake lights and ambulance, fire engine and police lights.

As for blue, the images it typically evokes are importance and confidence, and it can manage to do this without seeming too dark or overbearing, as black would be in many scenarios. This is probably why blue is the color of choice for situations wherein an image of authority and/or capability is required, as in the case of police officer uniforms and corporate attire. Blue is also often tied in with impressions of intelligence and respectability.

Culture

The color red is often used to express joy and celebration, and certain cultures use it to demonstrate purity. It is in fact used to denote happiness and prosperity in China, and it is also thought by many to bring good luck.

Of course red has its seedier side as well, and its used in red light districts has caused unfavorable associations that are often ascribed to people (mostly women) who wear red.

Blue on the other hand is freq used to denote peace or calm. That being said, the color may also denote a certain stodginess or conservatism, regardless of whether or not the wearer actually bears those qualities.

Similarities and Differences

Red

  • Often evokes strong emotions
  • Is often associated with emotional outbursts
  • Can be perceived as an aggressive and hostile color
  • An acceptable tie color for the President, as it relates to the flag

Blue

  • Often evokes calming emotions
  • May be seen as stodgy and/or conservative
  • May bring about a melancholic state
  • Also an acceptable tie color for the President of the U.S.

Which color do you like better?
  • Red
  • Blue
 
 

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