Please, enter a valid email!
Thank You!
00 days
00 hours
00 minutes
00 seconds

Color Theory Explained: What Color Scheme Should I Choose?

Picking the right color scheme for your project may be a real pain, so we decided to make a small guide for you.

Interaction of colors is by all means one of the most important parts of your website design. I’m sure that many of you think: “Is there any way to make my life easier? Can I stop wasting tons of my time on choosing the right colors?”. And the answer is ‘Yes!’.

This article will come handy for those who make their first steps in web design or just simply want to upgrade their design skills and learn something new. Just think about it while creating your color palette: there are 10 million colors you can choose from. Doesn’t it sound fascinating to you? I bet it does.

First, let me introduce someone: Haaave you met the Color Wheel?


Yeah, this fella will be your best friend in your colorful journey, and it will help me to illustrate the basic formulas of color harmony.

The colors on the wheel above are divided into the following groups:

  • Primary colors (Red, Blue, Yellow)
  • Secondary colors (Orange, Green, Purple)
  • Tertiary Colors (Any Primary Color + one Secondary Color)

All these colors are pure (you may also call them ‘saturated’) colors. Their pureness is intended to emphasize the intensity, brightness, and cheeriness.


The foundation of color theory includes three pillars: Complementation, Contrast, and Vibrancy. It may sound complicated, but it’s easy as pie, let me explain.

  • Complementation is the way we see the relations between colors.
  • Contrast is a great thing; its main purpose is not letting your website users die in agony of eyestrain.
  • Vibrancy helps us to affect users’ emotions and attract them to something.

Color Harmony

Let’s dive deeper and check out the ways you can combine the colors and get yourself an eye-catching color scheme.

These are the pairs of colors on the Color Wheel that have a strong relationship. If you place them next to each other, you’ll see that they make the other look more intense and just brighter. That’s what is called the complementary colors.

Split Complementary


This type of color-scheme consists of three colors and is created the following way:

  1. Choose the main color of your future color scheme
  2. Select two other colors which are located on either side of its complementary color

The main idea of the Split Complementary is quite easy: since we are taking the opposite colors, one color will always be warm, and the other one will be cool. These colors will complement each other and create a great contrast.


via Bureau Oberhaeuser on

Analogous Complementary

This type of color scheme includes three or more colors that are selected one by one on the color wheel; they are always positioned next to each other.

Analogous color schemes please the eye and look pretty harmonious. If you want to check them out, just go out and enjoy the nature, that’s where you can find these type of color schemes.


Once you decided on your ‘Mother Color’, just follow the color wheel and select as many additional colors as needed. Oh, and also, while choosing the colors make sure you have enough contrast.

One color will dominate, the second one will be supporting it, and the next one will help you work with the accent.


via Edin Vejzovic on

Triadic Complementary

This type of color scheme includes the colors that are evenly placed on the color wheel. Just draw the triangle, and you’ll get yourself a color scheme.


It doesn’t matter if you use a very pale version of the hues, you will still get pretty vibrant color scheme. Such schemes are usually used in pop-art and poster-like design.


Usually one of the colors just dominates, and the other two are used for accent, this is the right way to use the triadic color theme, note somewhere!

Monochromatic color scheme

Personally, I’d say that this is the simplest one. So here is what you gotta do to get yourself a Monochromatic color scheme:

  1. Pick one color
  2. ….
  3. Profit!

Just kidding. Once you’ve chosen the main color, you should just play with different variations (darkness, lightness) of this color. It will help you get your design a very calm and relaxing look.


via Eric E. Anderson on

How To Use Contrast Correctly

I don’t think that it will be fair to discuss color techniques and leave the contrast without our attention. Contrast matters and is more than just important. This is one of the things that will get you in trouble with your client or designer. The contrast will always be discussed and will always give birth to lots of fights.

And we won’t even go too far. Last week I finished one of my design projects and decided to show it to several friends. You will be surprised, but each person told me something different about the contrast. Someone thought it’s amazing; someone thought that it’s not quite alright and my other friend told me that I gotta work on contrast and fix it. Otherwise this design looks ridiculous.

So as you can see, the contrast is something worth mastering if you want to make designs that everyone will enjoy and adore, so let’s dive deep into basics and go from there.

Contrast helps us to distinguish one color from another. This is how two colors stand apart from each other.

For me, this is a very sensitive topic. As you remember from one of my articles, I hate when people make it impossible to read the content on the website. And I truly hate when designers neglect the basics of contrast.


One of the most popular mistakes is thinking that if you have two different colors, you will have correct contrast. Oh damn, it’s so not true. If they are in the same tone, you are screwed, buddy.

High And Low Contrast: What Fits You Best

This paragraph will be short, but still comprehensive enough, trust me.

If you are trying to get ahold of the customers’ attention and throw it at something very important - use high contrast. It will help you highlight the important information and make it eye-catching.


That’s what usually make content readable. Dark on Light and vice versa work best for that purpose.

An important thing to keep in mind: if you use high contrast all over your design, you will not highlight anything. It’s like trying to stand out in a crowd by wearing the same cloth as everyone.

And please, don’t try to be too creative in the blog posts and longreads. There is no need to reinvent the wheel and make the overall reading experience feel like a bad trip.


Your Life Can Be Easier!

Adobe Color CC

Guys, look around before reading this. It’s 2017 year, and everything gets automated, everything gets easier. I guess that’s the reason why such things like Adobe Kuler appeared. This is an amazing tool that will make it so easy to choose the right color scheme for your project!

As you can see, they use the same rules: Analogous, Triadic, Complementary and Monochromatic methods. And depending on the color, you choose Color CC will create a color scheme with the colors that will work with each other perfectly.


On top of it, you will get the all the color codes for the needed colors including the hexadecimal codes.



Paletton will be a perfect choice for the absolute beginners and someone who is in a hurry. It’s just simple in use and provides with some cool feature like changing the saturation of the whole color palette by a single move of your mouse.

However, if you are trying to get into Color Theory and learn something new - it should not be your primary choice since it does all the work for you and doesn’t teach you why the colors work with each other so good.

Case Study

Alright, folks, let’s take a look at the real website and determine what type of the color scheme is used there! I decided to show you one of my most favorite media websites - The Verge. Once you enter their website - you’ll notice that they use a solid black color to play with the contrast and highlight the news section for your best convenience.


On the top, they have a showcase with the most interesting articles, and as you can see, they highlight each block with one of the colors from their brand palette.

Right after the showcase, you can see a single article showcase. What’s so interesting about it? The background of this block is a gradient that shows us the main palette of The Verge project.


Once you enter any article or news, you will be sent to the page with nothing but black text and white background. And only links and headings will be highlighted with the other color. That’s a great minimalistic approach that, I think, should be used by mass media projects and magazines.

Here is what 'The Verge' team says about their new color scheme and redesign in general:

We've updated our entire design to be slicker, faster and more illuminating. All that 70's sci-fi orange is evolving into a new design language we're calling the 'Pathways' - bright laser lines that illuminate the stories we tell about the future. We think it looks like a neon sci-fi dream. We live in the future because there’s nowhere else to go.


The color is something you should carefully and attentively study. This is the backbone of successful design.

Unfortunately, you cannot determine what color scheme will work the best and will give you the best conversion, so you gotta test.

Don’t be too afraid to experiment and test out new color variations. But remember: your customer is not trying to have a bad trip, he just wants to read the content and interact with your website without a headache 🙂


If you are not sure what color scheme to use or how to design your website, just leave this headache to us! We have plenty of ready-made solutions designed by top quality designers and just passionate people with amazing skills and experience!

Alex Tkachenko

Creative writer passionate about WordPress and all that technical stuff. Meet Alex in person on LinkedIn.

Get more to your email

Subscribe to our newsletter and access exclusive content and offers available only to MonsterPost subscribers.

From was successfully send!
Server error. Please, try again later.

15 responses to “Color Theory Explained: What Color Scheme Should I Choose?”

  1. formulated says:

    Hey there! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog.
    Is it difficult to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty
    quick. I’m thinking about making my own but I’m not sure
    where to begin. Do you have any tips or suggestions? Thank you

  2. セックス ボット アメリカのどこで本物のラブドールを手に入れることができますか?男性のためのダッチワイフを持つことの重要性ダッチワイフを購入する理由とその理由は?あなたのためにセックス人形をオーラルセックスにする方法は?

  3. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More Info here to that Topic: […]

  4. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on that Topic: […]

  5. sbo says:

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More Info here to that Topic: […]

  6. If you are transferring into a brand new house, ask
    the sellers or your realtor for recommendations. You can even set Ask as your default
    search engine, and whilst new tabs and homepage pages.
    It’s a simple method to seek for keywords on a webpage.
    Specifically, it refers to how relevant your major key phrases are when in comparison with the
    next parts in an internet page. When you assign a major keyword
    to a webpage, don’t goal the identical phrase to rank another internet web page.

    96. What’s the maximum number of cookies that can be allowed
    to an online site? I don’t assume engines like google should be allowed to do something with your question until
    you give them specific permission every time. Search with Ecosia, and
    the company guarantees to plant a tree. An everyday e-publication,
    which you might need to pay a modest fee to distribute by way of a web service, can keep your prospects informed concerning
    what your organization is doing and provide a method to strategy them immediately.
    She has been doing Seo for each the biggest brands on this planet and small companies.

  7. … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here on that Topic: […]

  8. … [Trackback]

    […] Information on that Topic: […]

  9. Anonymous says:

    … [Trackback]

    […] Here you will find 97959 additional Info on that Topic: […]

  10. bóng đá says:

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on that Topic: […]

  11. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More Information here on that Topic: […]

  12. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on that Topic: […]

  13. … [Trackback]

    […] Read More Information here to that Topic: […]

  14. Kinlochfyp says:

    26. “Never walk away from a dialog even when it’s on-line. While simply including a hyperlink to their Instagram account might work for some of the most popular people on the planet, it hardly helps to get a dialog began. That provides you an extra level of security that if the account is hacked, you are not liable to shedding any vital private information, and it can’t be used to realize entry to any of your different accounts. I typically wait per week earlier than agreeing to a date as a result of that helps me weed out flaky guys who can’t sustain an interesting dialog. Even if Kendra did her finest to look fascinated within the artwork, by the top of the quasi-“date”, Jim’s patronizing tone/habits made it clear that this “friendship” was over. You’re finest to stick with trusted sites who do a great job of conserving their communities protected. Nothing is set in stone and the first date might not at all times be the very best place to get to know somebody. If they’re involved, they will get again to you finally.

    They’re busy and when you break ranks and say “hey, simply questioning if you got my final message? I used to oscillate between following up and never following up when somebody hadn’t replied to my final message for a while. If you’ve uploaded the incorrect pics, folks simply won’t message you again. Don’t fear, if there’s attraction signs a vietnamese girl likes you already, you won’t break it by going AWOL for just a few days. Be a gentleman. Belief me, polite males are far and few between nowadays. Even when it’s been 5 days or a week, just hold your horses. It’s not going anyplace so just give up and transfer on. If you feel a bit uncomfortable about sitting nonetheless at a dinner table for a full night, go for an activity date the place you’ll move around some and matters of conversation will emerge naturally. Some individuals are anxious to skip the small discuss and begin planning a date right away whereas others are content material to spend months trading messages earlier than even mentioning assembly in individual. And, no, they’re not the superb particular person you’ve been ready for all this time.

    Or possibly they ask to your cellphone number because they are trusting and simply need to name you, not as a result of they’re a scammer. If they don’t get back to you in any respect, they’re not interested, I’m afraid. So, go for a basic free version first so that you simply get acquainted with it. So, toss out your entire excuses and concentrate on these tips for online relationship if you’re critical about finding your match. In this text we will discuss some on-line relationship personal advert tips that you can use to help you to extend your probabilities of discovering a partner online. This may embody images which embrace location info; your children’s names; your pet’s names (typically used as passwords!); and so on. Unfortunately if you’re underneath 50 you’ll want to attend a couple of years before you possibly can be part of: Stitch is simply obtainable to individuals over 50! You make a profile, send out a couple of messages, arrange a date …

    Then, a few messages later she jokingly threatened to un-match me due to one thing I hadn’t seen. For instance, I received talking to a woman on Tinder once and – almost straight away – I jokingly stated I’d need to un-match her as a result of she hadn’t seen my favourite film. For example, a Tinder bio looks very completely different to an OkCupid’s bio. Don’t make the mistake that many rookies make by not adding a bio. If you’re sticking to our guideline about not giving out your personal details then you definately don’t need to worry about this one. You don’t want your messages to be too long most of the time as a result of it might put the opposite individual off. And being humorous can be really easy, especially if you’re talking to somebody who’s naturally humorous. Separating the wheat from the chaff and talking – and assembly – somebody who seems genuine, cute, and who you actually join with is effort. Divorce particulars, family problems, medical issues, pals or different men who have betrayed and disappointed you might be off limits.