Coral Color

Coral Color – What Color Is Coral and What Colors Go With Coral?

Coral is an energizing and popular color, but is coral pink, or is it a shade of orange? To understand the coral color better, we are going to go into more detail about what colors go with coral and the various shades of coral you can get.



What Color Is Coral?

Is coral pink? You can say there are various shades of coral, some being more pink, red, or orange. However, the color can be described as a vibrant orange-pink in most cases, which also still has elements of red. The color comes from the precious corals or marine invertebrates found in the ocean, which can also vary in color but mainly have a pink-orange color.

What Color Is Coral?

The more modern display of the coral web color below in the table is more a shade of orange. The coral color tends to be a little less feminine than pink, less aggressive than red, and more sophisticated than orange.

So, coral is the perfect balance between all of these warm colors.

Throughout the article, you will see tables that represent the various shades of coral and other colors. These will show you the hex code, which identifies the color and other codes that are used mainly for printing and web design. The table also provides the visual coral color, so you can see for yourself what it looks like.

Coral ShadeCoral Hex CodeCMYK Coral Color Code (%)RGB Coral Color CodeCoral Color
Coral#ff7f500, 50, 69, 0255, 127, 80 


Coral Color: A Brief History

Coral as an English color name was first used in the early 16th century, in the year 1513. The red coral as a precious substance was formed into jewelry that dates as far back as 3000 BC, from the Mesopotamian civilization. This type of jewelry was also worn by the Ancient Romans and Egyptians, who believed it was a talisman that could ward off evil.

Shades of Coral in Art Brera Madonna (1472-1474) by Piero Della Francesca; Piero della Francesca, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

This belief continued up to the Renaissance, with paintings depicting the Virgin Mary holding the baby Jesus, who is wearing a coral pendant. You can see an example of this in the painting Brera Madonna (1472–1474) by Piero Della Francesca. During the Victorian era, when exploration was at its height, coral jewelry became more of a fashion item, and over the years it has remained a unique and fashionable jewelry item to have.

During the 70s, there was a trend for orange and pink colors, so coral tones were quite popular in fashion, beauty, and interior design. 

Coral tones in cosmetics were quite popular, especially for the nails, lips, and eyes. Today, the coral color still has some popularity in beauty products and interior design, but it has also gained popularity in graphic and web designs as well. The coral color was elected as the Pantone color of the year for 2019, which has gained even more admiration for this fun and energetic color.


Meaning of the Coral Color

Since coral appears to be a combination of warm colors, it is quite energetic and invigorating. However, it also produces a fresh and relaxing feeling that has more of a feminine feel to it. The color does portray a sense of positivity and comfort. Other coral color associations include some of the following.

  • Youthfulness
  • Individuality
  • Acceptance
  • Empowering
  • Openness
  • Optimism

Coral Hex

  • Inspiration
  • Trendiness
  • Sociability
  • Liveliness
  • Assertiveness
  • Self-confidence

Orange shades tend toward optimism, while pink adds a feminine aspect. However, redder shades of coral can be more masculine. As it is a combination of colors, it can be a color associated with inclusiveness and is revitalizing, and has a warming presence. Those who tend to favor coral colors can be seen as adventurous and self-confident, but also have a sense of calm about them.

There are also a few negative associations, if you overuse the color, it can become overwhelming, so moderation is best with this type of energetic color. The color can also be associated with immaturity, unreliability, and unpredictability.



Shades of Coral

The coral color can be seen in different ways, as there are various shades of coral. Each of these shades can produce different effects and can be used in different ways. Whatever shades of coral it is, it remains a beautiful and fun color that is upbeat and unique.

Coral Hex Code


Light Coral

When looking at this color, you can see it leans towards your pink or soft red side of the spectrum. This particular coral color also forms part of the original X Window System, X11 color names. 

Coral color combinations for this color can be softer pinks and oranges, as well as a soft cyan color for contrast. 

Coral ShadeCoral Hex CodeCMYK Coral Color Code (%)RGB Coral Color CodeCoral Color
Light Coral#f080800, 47, 47, 6240, 128, 128 
Soft Cyan#80f0f047, 0, 0, 6128, 240, 240 


Coral Red

This color is more of a light red or more intense coral pink. To have the color stand out, you can try pairing it with a teal blue or turquoise. Some plants display this color and have it in their name. For example, the Verbena “Superbena Coral Red”.

Coral ShadeCoral Hex CodeCMYK Coral Color Code (%)RGB Coral Color CodeCoral Color
Coral Red#ff40400, 75, 75, 0255, 64, 64 
Turquoise#30d5c877, 0, 6, 1648, 213, 200 

Coral Color Palette


Coral Pink

This color can be seen as a soft red and is the color that most represents the coral color. The first time coral pink was documented as a color name was in 1892. 

The best color that produces a contrast is similar to the one for light coral, a soft cyan or teal color. 

Coral ShadeCoral Hex CodeCMYK Coral Color Code (%)RGB Coral Color CodeCoral Color
Coral Pink#f883790, 47, 51, 3248, 131, 121 
Teal#077c8695, 7, 0, 477, 124, 134 


Living Coral

Pantone selected this color as the color of the year for 2019. A beautiful coral tone that helps to enliven and energize, but still has a soft edge to it. The color also provides a sense of comfort and when used in graphics, it has a welcoming and lighthearted feel that welcomes you in. A playful color that mesmerizes the mind and brings a calming quality to the viewer.

Coral ShadeCoral Hex CodeCMYK Coral Color Code (%)RGB Coral Color CodeCoral Color
Living Coral#ff6f610, 56, 62, 0255, 111, 97 

Coral Color Code



Coral Color Combinations

Many coral color combinations can work, especially when used with other warm colors like yellow. This combination provides a comforting coral color palette, so let us see what other combinations there are for you to use.

Coral Color Combinations


Complementary Coral Color Combinations

When learning to understand color theory and the color wheel, which is a visual representation of every color, there are various terms you must understand. Complementary colors belong to the types of color combinations you can get. These colors are on opposing sides of the color wheel and when paired, offer a contrast, where each color makes the other stand out. 

To put it simply, the colors pop.

When it comes to coral colors, blue tends to be its complementary color. Darker blue colors like navy blue offer a more masculine impression, while light blues can provide more of a tropical feel and evokes images of clear ocean waters and sandy beaches. If you have a more orange coral, vibrant blues like aqua blue will work best. The specific complementary for the below coral color is more of a turquoise or light blue color.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Coral#ff7f500, 50, 69, 0255, 127, 80 
Light Blue#50d0ff69, 18, 0, 080, 208, 255 


Monochromatic Coral Color Combinations

Monochromatic colors are another type of color combination and involve using the same color but using variations of the color. Below you can see the coral color and two variations from a more vibrant to a paler version of coral. When using this type of coral color palette and including a shade of green as an accent color, the resulting combination can be natural and calming, and reminiscent of autumn.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Vibrant Orange#ff47030, 72, 99, 0255, 71, 3 
Coral#ff7f500, 50, 69, 0255, 127, 80 
Pale Orange#ffb79d0, 28, 38, 055, 183, 157 

Analogous Shades of Coral


Analogous Coral Color Combinations

Analogous colors are colors that are found close to or next to one another. These colors tend to have similar characteristics and when used together, they can create a vibrant and appealing color palette. 

In this case, other oranges, pinks, and yellow colors work wonderfully with coral. 

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Pink-Red#ff50790, 69, 53, 0255, 80, 121 
Coral#ff7f500, 50, 69, 0255, 127, 80 
Light Yellow#ffd7500, 16, 69, 0255, 215, 80 


Triadic Coral Color Combinations

Triadic colors form the shape of an equilateral triangle on the color wheel and offer a great contrast in colors. In this case, the three colors are coral, a light purple or violet, and a light cyan or green color. The colors will differ slightly with each shade of coral you use.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Light Violet#7f50ff50, 69, 0, 0127, 80, 255 
Coral#ff7f500, 50, 69, 0255, 127, 80 
Light Green#50ff7f69, 0, 50, 080, 255, 127 

Triadic Coral Color Combinations



How to Make a Coral Color Palette With Paint

When considering color theory, you can create a coral color by combining orange, red, and white. You could also make coral by mixing yellow, red, and white. When creating a coral color palette, you should always make a color palette that you can refer back to.

This means recording all the paint colors used as well as the proportions of each paint color.

Coral Color Paint

Try using the following paint combination of three parts rose-pink paint and two parts yellow, with a small amount of white. You can also combine one-part pure orange, one-part rich red, and two parts white to lighten the mix. Using various shades of paint will then also produce different tints and shades. Another example can include lemon yellow and rose or tulip red, which is then combined with ivory. 

When mixing, always add colors a little at a time until you reach the right color.



Coral Colors in Design

As you have read, coral is a vibrant and energizing color that also brings with it a sense of relaxation. The color grabs attention and is perfect for use on social media and in graphic design. The color is also used widely in packaging as it has a warm and welcoming feel to it.

Shades of Coral in Design

The living coral shade is quite popular in cosmetics and beauty applications like blush, lipstick, eye shadow, and nail varnish. The color is playful, and it is easy to create various shimmers and textures with the products. The coral color is also great in fashion design, as the color exudes positivity and comfort. The color can also be used effectively with various textures and patterns. 

Shades of coral are also quite popular for interior design purposes.


Coral Colors in Your Home

Coral can be used as a vibrant accent color and can easily be brought in using accessories like blankets, rugs, throw cushions, and even upholstery. The color brings in warmth and provides a comforting and welcoming feeling. You could also use coral color flowers, which can add a more tropical atmosphere to a room. You can use these accents in living areas, bathrooms as well as bedrooms.

Interior Coral Color Palette

You can also use the coral color as wall paint but consider a muted shade that will bring a more feminine feel to a bedroom. Try to limit the use of bright and redder coral shades as they can become stimulating and loses the relaxation quality a more subdued coral color provides.


As you can see, the coral color can be quite versatile, and it has a variety of uses. Next time you want to bring some warmth into a design, and you want a more balanced, energizing, yet relaxing color, then choosing a shade of coral might just be what you are looking for.



Frequently Asked Questions


What Color Is Coral?

The coral color can be described as being an orange-pink or pink-orange color that contains a combination of red, yellow, and pink. The color provides a balance between these colors as it is milder than red and slightly more stylish than orange. There are also various shades of coral that can possess more orange or red.


What Colors Go With Coral?

The coral color can go with quite a few colors, but the best combination would be with various shades of blue, which will help the coral color stand out. Other similar colors like yellow, and orange also go well with coral. Other colors that go with coral include white, green, taupe, black, and shades of gray.


Can You Use a Coral Color Palette for the Bedroom?

Yes, as long as the color does not dominate too much, because it can become a bit overwhelming. However, using softer shades of coral or using coral colors as an accent color can bring warmth into a room, making it comfortable and inviting.


Cite this Article

Charlene, Lewis, “Coral Color – What Color Is Coral and What Colors Go With Coral?.” Art in Context. July 12, 2022. URL:

Lewis, C. (2022, 12 July). Coral Color – What Color Is Coral and What Colors Go With Coral?. Art in Context.

Lewis, Charlene. “Coral Color – What Color Is Coral and What Colors Go With Coral?.” Art in Context, July 12, 2022.

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