What Color Is Your Product?

To a marketer, it’s obvious that color choices in socially visible products mirror consumer sentiment.

Design teams and consumer researchers labor mightily to nail the hues chosen for apparel, furniture, alcoholic beverage labels, and, the big kahuna of social symbolism, cars.

To do this, they look backward (what happened last year and long term trends), sideways (what’s going on now that could affect what we want to project in identity-defining purchases), and forward (via social sciences, including economics and politics).

They hire independent color labs and consulting arms of makers of dyes, paints and pigments.

At NameLab, we were debating (why? because color comes into play in our identity work) the significance of the fact that 77% of automobiles  were painted “colorless colors” according to Axalta Coating Systems’ Global Automotive 2016 Color Popularity Report: See the full report


1.   White — 37%
2.   Black — 18%
3.   Silver — 11%
4.   Gray — 11%
5.   Blue — 6%
6.   Red — 6%
7.   Brown — 6%
8.   Yellow/Gold — 3%
9.   Green — 1%
10. Others — 1%

White overtook silver as the most popular color and hasn’t looked back and silver continues to slide.

Does this mean you should reconsider that orange-and-blue label. We don’t know. But you have to admit it’s an interesting question.

Justin Gilman