Meaning of BLACK COLOR in psychology

  • Jul 26, 2021
Meaning of the color black in psychology

Colors are a communicative instrument of our mind, since they consist of wavelengths that are physiologically perceived from spontaneously and are registered in the limbic system, the part of our brain that controls the emotional behavior of the individual. Hence the fact that the choice of a color or the rejection of it at a particular time of the day or of the Life has an indicator and detector psychological meaning, therefore it acts as a tool for knowledge personal. In this Psychology-Online article we will discover together the meaning of black color in psychology.

You may also like: Meaning of the color white in psychology


  1. What does the color black mean
  2. Meaning of the color black in the Lüscher test
  3. Meaning of the color black in marketing
  4. Meaning of black in architecture and design
  5. Meaning of the color black in fashion

What does the color black mean?

Black is a color with a theoretically null brightness, without color (so it is called "achromatic color"). It is a primary color that cannot be created from scratch, more precisely it is given by the subtractive synthesis of all the colors of the visible spectrum. In this article you will find more information about the

color perception. From this point of view, the opposite of white can be considered, also without color, but given by the additive synthesis of all the colors of the visible spectrum (or of three primary colors). In this sense, it is commonly said that white is given by the "combination of all colors", while black is given by the "absence of color".

Instinctively, you think about the negative aspects of black: childhood fears, darkness, death. These elements are already present in the Bible, where the dye is linked to funerals, the dead and sin. In symbology it represents the earth and, therefore, mourning, because in the West the deceased are buried and turn to dust, but this is not the case, for example, in Asia. It is indisputable that black, because of its link with the confines of life, has a symbolic power unique among the colors and the history of man, that of living symbols, has used it in a thousand and more shapes.

Meaning of the color black in the Lüscher Test.

Swiss psychologist Max Lüscher presented his Clinical Trial of Colors at the first world congress of psychology held in Lausanne in 1947. Lüscher's diagnosis is based on regulated functional psychology, and with the test colors of him are measured, in addition to human sensory perceptions, especially those psychovegetative unconscious areas inaccessible to the colloquy verbal. The test is based on six simple colors, defined and with a particular meaning, whether it is chosen, therefore, positive or excluded, therefore having a negative value. Here is the meaning of choosing black for the Lüscher color test:

  • Objective physiological meaning: ecstasy.
  • Objective psychological meaning: coercion, will to annihilate, absolute denial, opposition, protest.

Black is the darkest color at all present in the Test and is understood precisely as a negation of the color itself. Therefore, this color represents denial, unconditional "no", rejection, resignation, and always expresses a serious discomfort existential, affective, adaptive or relational. The color adjacent to the preferred black becomes important:

  • Blue/Negro: desire for calm and affection, for a calm and conflict-free environment; suggestibility and affective dependence; phobic fear of what is risky.
  • Green / black: egocentric, stubborn, narcissistic attitude, need for strong confirmations, assurances, control.
  • Red/Negro: impulsivity, low tolerance for frustration, action, show of force, restlessness, irritation, aggressive behavior.
  • Yellow/Negro- need for relief, feeling hopeless, waiting for sudden and catastrophic actions to put an end to problems; in adults and adolescents this pair may indicate a suicide danger.
  • Violet / Black: hypersensitivity, seduction, conversion tendencies, emotional lability, suggestion, magical-infantile thinking, psychological dependence, mental weakness.
  • Brown / black: self-harm attitudes, regression in the body, physical daze as a defense against psychic anguish, autovitism, absolute desire for abandonment and restorative relaxation, need to forget, existence of a wanted trauma to rid.
  • Gray / black: opposition, non-collaboration, emotional distancing, discontent, demotivation, disenchantment, resistance, defense of depressive anxiety.
Meaning of the color black in psychology - Meaning of the color black in the Lüscher Test

Meaning of the color black in marketing.

Not only psychological tests are based on the premise of the psychophysical perception of colors, but also also marketing studies, advertising and many other aspects that affect our lives everyday. Sometimes the choice of a color may seem random, but it is seldom like this: it may happen that someone buys a dress in the color that is not exactly your favorite because the correct color was finished or for other reasons contingents; but it is difficult for a company to launch a product on the market without having studied its color. Here you can see information about the meanings of colors in marketing.

The black evokes the mystery, and it can go well if in a contained measure and for technological products. For branding and packaging, black is classic and strong, and is used regularly in marketing manager schemes or as a primary component, or to highlight text or graphic characters. Black can also communicate power, luxury, sophistication and authority, and can be used to market anything from cars and electronics to luxury hotels and financial services.

In this article you will find more information about how colors affect mood.

Meaning of the color black in psychology - Meaning of the color black in marketing

Meaning of black in architecture and design.

When examining the elements that contribute to a feeling of well-being or discomfort in the face of impact with an environment, the function of color cannot be omitted. Indeed, the perception of color plays a determining role in the relationship that the individual establishes with the environment.

In the western world, chromatic differences are assigned as many forms of symbolism, which, when presented in a certain environment, correspond to different psychological perceptions. The color black is associated with death and suffering, mourning, the darkness of darkness, the terror of the unknown, magic and mystery, but also solemnity and trust.

In interiors, black is generally used with other colors, as it highlights them by making them appear brighter. The psychological perceptions linked to the colors used for the interior walls are: abstraction, strangeness, greatly exaggerates the perception of depth of spaces, fullness, heaviness.

Meaning of the color black in psychology - Meaning of the color black in architecture and design

Meaning of the color black in fashion

The psychology of fashion identifies in black an intense symbolic value of protection: the option to dress in Black can reveal, at times, an unconscious defense against stress and particularly intense emotions and impetuous. Black, the color of the unknown, of what is secret and hidden, seems to represent, in clothing, a defensive barrier and the border between one's inner world and the outer environment, protecting and hiding the most turbulent and intimate emotions, one's own vulnerability and insecurity, lack of self-confidence.

If white reveals and exposes to light, black, on the contrary, hides, envelops and protects. If some choose black to hide or disguise parts of your body that are difficult to accept, such as roundness, others seem to use black to unknowingly hide internal parts of their own personality or mood.

The color black also seems to be associated with a strong sense of belonging: In the field of clubbing and social events, in fact, black clothes are often adopted to indicate aggregation and equality, exceeding the pure stylistic and aesthetic question to represent, as a kind of symbolic uniform, belonging to a group, a team, a social or political clan precise.

In the color psychologyFurthermore, black represents the emblem of the authority, power and control. A predominantly black clothing may indicate an unconscious intention to gain respect and submission from others, but also a desire to convey sensuality, sophisticated charm, self-control and refinement: this meaning is recognizable in the icon of the dress code in black of little black dress and the black tie at elite social events.

Meaning of the color black in psychology - Meaning of the color black in fashion

This article is merely informative, in Psychology-Online we do not have the power to make a diagnosis or recommend a treatment. We invite you to go to a psychologist to treat your particular case.

If you want to read more articles similar to Meaning of the color black in psychology, we recommend that you enter our category of Emotions.


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