The Pantone Color of 2019 Is Warm, Glorious, and Connects Us to The World

The trend luminaries at the Pantone Color Institute just revealed the color of the year for 2019 — PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral! Pantone calls Living Coral an “animating and life-affirming coral hue with a golden undertone that energizes and enlivens with a softer edge.” Buoyant, vibrant, and effervescent, it calls nature to mind, connecting us to vibrant undersea ecosystems we all depend upon.

For a glimpse of how to use Living Coral for maximum impact, check out our dedicated gallery on Adobe Stock.


Image source: Jacqui Miller / Stocksy / Adobe Stock.

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We’re especially excited to embrace Living Coral this year because it’s a perfect match for some of the most important design and brand developments happening right now. It’s a beautiful addition to the first visual trend we’ve forecast for 2019, Natural Instincts.

Image Source: Yusuke Okada / Adobe Stock.

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This return-to-nature movement is bubbling up from our daily digital overload, and tapping into a shared longing to reconnect with natural and immersive experiences. Natural Instincts, at its core, is the search for simplicity, soothing organic forms, and natural wellness in anxious times. Warm, life-affirming Living Coral fits the bill perfectly.

Image source: Catrin / Adobe Stock.

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Living Coral also nestles into our end-of-year trend for 2018 — Touch and Tactility. We’re seeing consumers and designers gravitate toward textures (think of rough coral, sleek fish, cold water, grainy sand). This trend goes hand-in-hand with the longing for human touch.

Image source: Lukas Furlan / Adobe Stock.

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“With consumers craving human interaction and social connection,” says Leatrice Eisman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, “the humanizing and heartening qualities displayed by the convivial Pantone Living Coral hit a responsive chord.”

Just as coral reefs are a source of sustenance and shelter to sea life, Living Coral reminds us of the precious nature of our world and our responsibility to protect it. In 2019, we’re forecasting the rise of Brand Stand — more and more consumers will be considering brands’ social, political, and environmental commitments before they make a purchase. This means that brands have an opportunity to connect with people through images and colors that broadcast their ethical commitments. And Living Coral can help evoke one of the most pressing issues on consumers’ minds — protecting threatened ecosystems before it’s too late.

Image source: ADDICTIVE STOCK / Adobe Stock.

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Richard Vevers, the founder and CEO of The Ocean Agency, a creative nonprofit dedicated to ocean conservation explains the impact of this year’s color: “Choosing Living Coral as the Pantone Color of the Year, without doubt, will help raise awareness of the crisis facing not just corals, but the staggering amount of life they support — about a quarter of all ocean life. The announcement couldn’t have come at more critical time. Without urgent international action to save coral reefs, it is likely that we will lose virtually all coral reefs by 2050.”

Richard also tells us how color plays a role in moving people to action. “The Ocean Agency relies on color. It’s a hugely powerful tool for conservation. Color captures attention, but more importantly, it evokes emotion. Now more than ever, we need to evoke emotion when it comes to saving coral reefs — that’s what inspires global action.”

Image source: Ocean Agency / Adobe Stock.

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These days, content velocity — the increasing speed at which we all need to create content across media — means that trends, and consumers’ demands for new, thought-provoking, on-point visuals, are moving fast. We’re here to help you keep up and see what’s coming next.

You can peek ahead at the visual trends we forecast for 2019and read about Pantone’s color predictions for spring and summer 2019 Fashion Week. And don’t forget to follow us all year as we unpack major visual trends and track the year’s evolving color palette.

Image source: EyeEm / Adobe Stock.

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If you’re planning to add a dash or more of Living Coral to your work, check out our dedicated gallery for ideas and inspiration, and learn how designer Jesús Ramirez incorporated Living Coral into a paint splash effect by compositing several Adobe Stock photos.