Living Coral, a warm, welcoming and joyful shade, is the Pantone Color Institute's Color of the Year for 2019. Just as coral reefs are a source of sustenance and shelter for sea life, this vibrant yet mellow hue is the embodiment of optimism, providing comfort and buoyancy in our continually shifting environment. Officially known as PANTONE 16-1546, Living Coral is an animating and life-affirming shade of orange with a golden undertone that has long been a staple in the fashion and beauty industries.
But who is Pantone?
Pantone was originally a printing company in New Jersey that specialized in color charts for the cosmetic, fashion and medical industries. Keeping color consistent was not an easy task. Just think about it in the salon - one client’s request for “brown hair” could be interpreted many ways. Do they want gold undertones? Or a cooler shade? Chestnut? Auburn? Espresso?
This confusion is what led Lawrence Herbert, one of Pantone’s employees, to buy the business in 1962 and create a universal language of color with specific formulas (just like when you mix hair color) to standardize exact color matches. If someone wanted a color, they’d ask for a Pantone number, and it would be the same exact color across the globe. His first Pantone Matching System had 10 colors in 1963. With thousands of colors today, Pantone is the industry standard world-wide for color with over 10 million users.
This simplifies the process for graphic designers who are working with manufacturers and retailers. It helps in branding, logos, nail polishes, car colors, and any product that has a color involved. Pantone keeps colors consistent.
How is the Color of the Year Chosen?
Since 2000, the Pantone Color Institute, a consulting service within Pantone that forecasts global color trends and advises companies on color in brand identity and product development, has selected a Color of the Year. To choose the Color of the Year, Pantone’s color experts examine world-wide trends. This can include the entertainment industry, popular art collections and new artists, fashion, all areas of design and popular travel destinations. Factors such as the economy, street life, social media politics, and beauty trends in different areas are huge influences, as well.
“Color enhances and influences the way we experience life,” said Laurie Pressman, Vice President of the Pantone Color Institute. “As a shade that affirms life through a dual role of energizing and nourishing, PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral reinforces how colors can embody our collective experience and reflect what is taking place in our global culture at a moment in time.”
Living Coral and the Beauty Industry
In a press release announcing the Color of the Year, Pantone also breaks down each industry and how the Color of the Year relates to it. Here are two industries that relate to beauty professionals and stylists.
Living Coral in BeautyAs a life-affirming hue that complements all skin tones, PANTONE Living Coral brings natural color to beauty in blush, eye and lip. Uninhibited, playful looks are also emboldened by Living Coral, which, as the center of a kaleidoscope of color, encourages experimentation in beauty with palettes, textures, shimmers and sheens.
Living Coral in Fashion & AccessoriesLiving Coral inspires experimentation and playful expression in both men’s and women’s street and runway styles. The warm shade suggests comfort and positivity in simple color stories, but becomes more explorative and effervescent in patterns, textures and even monochrome looks. An appealing accent shade, PANTONE Living Coral provides a striking contrast across the color spectrum.
From hair color shades to nail lacquer for clients, here are three featured items with the Living Coral color palette to introduce to your clients.
Wella Color Charm Paints Semi-Permanent Hair Color, 2 oz
Cuccio Pro Powder Polish Dip, 1.6 oz
Coral w/ Peach Undertones
China Glaze Nail Lacquer, .5 oz
007 Coral Star (Shimmer)