The Color Pink — History, Meaning and Facts

Pink is a calming color associated with love and affection. It also has a relatively recent history as a feminine color associated with womenswear. Read on to learn more about the color pink.

Facts About the Color Pink

Here are a few facts about pink:

  • Madame de Pompadour, one of Louis XV’s lovers, liked the hue so much that the Sèvres porcelain company created and named a specific pink shade for her.
  • Former first lady Mamie Eisenhower loved the color pink and had pink decor throughout the White House.
  • Elvis Presley had a pink 1955 Cadillac.

History of the Color Pink

The color pink was recognized as a concept in 800 B.C. in Homer’s Odyssey. The term was coined in the 17th century by a Greek botanist for the ruffled edges of carnations. In the mid-18th century, pink was a fashionable color among male and female aristocrats as a symbol of class and luxury.

In the mid-20th century, men started to wear darker colors to reflect their World War II service. Bright and pastel colors like pink were rebranded as feminine as part of a postwar effort to remove women from the workforce and reestablish their traditional homemaker roles. Many advertisements targeting women depicted them in colorful clothing.

This connotation extended to baby girls in the 1980s when ultrasound technology was first used to determine sex and parents could shop by gender. Since the 1990s, pink has become more a bit more gender-neutral in Western culture.

Meaning of the Color Pink

The meanings and symbolism for pink have changed over the years. In art, pink was sometimes used for Jesus due to its association with the womb and innocence. The Roman goddess Venus of intimacy and love was also painted in pink.

READ  What is a Y Brightness? Beta Reflectance Factor? Reflection Coefficient?

Today, pink is also the color of awareness and activism for specific causes, including breast cancer, women’s rights and the LGBTQ community.

Psychology of the Color Pink

As the mix between red’s passion and white’s purity, pink symbolizes love, nurture and compassion. It evokes feelings of comfort, warmth and hope. Pink is also a sign of good health with the phrase “in the pink.” It symbolizes success in the expression that “everything is rosy” and happiness with “tickled pink.”

Some studies suggest that pink environments stimulate calmness, so it has been used in prisons and hospitals. However, more recent findings indicate that pink does not affect aggression.

How Is Pink Dye Made?

Pink, as a lighter shade of red, has many of the same dye sources. Pink can be made from plants, like madder roots of the plant Rubia tinctorum, and woods like brazilwood. Today, most pink dye comes from cochineal, an insect from South America. Pink food coloring is created from Red Number 3 or 40.

Measuring the Color Pink

A spectrophotometer will determine whether your pink shade is consistently created in production processes. It measures color using sensors that separate transmitted and reflected light beams into component wavelengths. The data generated offers precise information about the pink shade.

Learn More About Color Measuring at HunterLab

Contact us online for more information about our spectrophotometers for measuring pink samples.