The Language Of Tie Colors

Most men today understand that their suit color conveys a message. Did you know that the color of your necktie, bow tie or even a pocket square sends a message? Many gentlemen simply match their tie colors to their suit and out the door, they go. They are completely oblivious to the secret language of color and the statement they are making with their choices. According to well-documented research on the psychology of colors, the shades you wear send subliminal messages to those around you. Never fear, the Guru is here to decode this language and show you how to look good while sending the right message.


Choosing The Right Color Palette

Ties Color Palette

It is a reasonable assumption that you own at least one business, casual, or formal suit. Matching your suit, shirt and tie color can be overwhelming for some. In her book, The Curated Closet, author and blogger Anuschka Rhees discusses how to choose a color palette for your wardrobe. Suits in the classic colors of black, gray, brown, white or navy blue pair well with almost every shade in the color spectrum. More contemporary suit colors like red, purple, green and yellow look best when paired with neckwear in neutral colors. So now that you know what color neckwear pairs well with your suit, let’s take it a step further and see what your tie color is saying about you.


Black Ties


Black implies power, control, and sophistication. It has a sense of mystery and intrigue to it. Seen as a conservative and dignified color, it is worn to funerals and on somber occasions. It is often spotted on those who are ambitious and achievement oriented. Wearing black ties also creates a sense of elegance and luxury. While it may not be the best choice to wear in everyday business situations, it is always a smart choice for formal wear. It exudes class and refinement especially in high-end fabrics like velvet or silk. Black is a neutral color and therefore can be worn with just about any suit or shirt color. However, be careful pairing black neckties and bow ties with pastels. The contrast between these colors can be too harsh if not done correctly.


Blue Ties


Wearing tie colors in shades of blue have a calming and relaxing effect on those around you. You come across as caring, cool, and collected when donning any shade of blue. Additionally, it shows that you are loyal, trustworthy, and responsible. Neckties and bow ties incorporating brighter shades of blue show that you communicate well and that you have an idealistic nature. Darker shades may indicate a more conservative and intellectual attitude.

Wearing pale blue inspires freedom and creativity. Sky blue is a non-threatening color that promotes healing and fidelity. While azure blue invokes contentment and the desire to achieve great things. Pairing blue bow ties and neckties with suits in shades of gray, black, tan and white. When wearing a blue tie with a blue suit, make sure that the shades match fairly well. Including another neutral shade will help to balance the color pallet of your ensemble.


Brown Ties

Brown Ties

Brown is the down-to-earth color that is viewed as masculine and stable. Wearing brown tie colors suggests that you are loyal, dependable and trustworthy. This warm and sensual color indicates that you are quietly confident and that you possess an honest and sincere demeanor. While some may shy away from brown, it is a versatile color that has many positive effects. Light brown ties say you are friendly, approachable and genuine. Ties in shades of tan or beige indicate that you are practical, straightforward, and uncomplicated. They create a sharp tone on tone look when paired with suits in the same shade – perfect for summer occasions. 


Burgundy Ties


Burgundy is a deeper, sophisticated, and more subdued shade of red. It exudes a sense of reserved luxury. Burgundy denotes that you are controlled and have a dignified character. It encourages thinking before acting and elevates energy levels in a controlled way. Burgundy bow ties, neckties and accessories pair exceptionally well with neutral colored suits in shades of gray as well as modern shades of muted olive or army green. Tie colors in burgundy, red wine, and dark cherry shades worn during the Fall and Winter add color and visual interest to your ensemble. Burgundy and navy blue is a striking color combination seen in formal wear and business suits. You appear polished, mature and distinguished in this color pairing.


Gray Ties


The color gray is solid and stable. It conveys that the wearer is impartial, conservative and subdued. Additionally, gray tie colors are seen as formal, professional and elegant. Light gray is a soothing and calming while dark gray is serious and indicated self-discipline. Gray is a combination of black and white. Therefore, it lightens or tones down other colors it is paired with. Tie colors in shades of gray are considered neutral and therefore help to balance out a pallet of more lively colors. Often worn in business and formal settings, silver or gray bow ties add elegance and sophistication to almost any ensemble. Suits in dark or jewel-toned colors all the way to light pastel shades can benefit from the addition of gray ties and accessories. 


Green Ties


Green is closely associated with nature, money, and growth. Dark green ties suggest ambition and wealth. They are a good choice when negotiating or to influence others. Emerald green promotes creative ideas. It is an uplifting and inspiring color choice. Wearing jade green indicates that you are trustworthy, tactful and diplomatic. Ties with lime green show that you are youthful and it helps to clear the mind of negativity. However, pairing bright green shades can be tricky. When not done correctly, they can appear tacky and be distracting especially in the workplace. Olive green tie colors convey a strength of character and caring for others feelings. Green bow ties and neckties look best when paired with classic earth tone shades like brown and beige. For a more contemporary look try pairing a green tie with shades of eggplant or dark orange.


Orange Ties

Orange Ties

Orange is the color of uninhibited. It says you are an optimistic extrovert with a forward way of thinking. Less passionate and aggressive than the color red, orange is balanced and full of vitality. Wearing orange accessories attracts and holds the attention of others. They are a great choice when public speaking or when you want to encourage two-way communication. Ties and pocket squares in shades of peach puts people at ease and gets them talking. Other tie colors like golden orange or amber indicted that you have confidence, vitality, and self-control.


Pink Ties


Calming and reassuring, pink is a color that inspires hope and kindness. It is a non-threatening color that indicates good health and success. Adding bow ties, neckties and other accessories in shades of pink is a smart choice when working with women. They respond positively to a man donning pink as it says he is sensitive and confident in himself.

Tie colors in blush, rose, orchid, fuchsia, and hot pink are all shades that exude love, hope, and happiness. In all its various shades, pink is an appropriate color for men’s wedding formal wear as well as in business wear. From pink bow ties and accessories to full pink tuxedos, this color is now a widely accepted color in men’s fashion. Casual settings like birthdays, christenings, and first dates are also opportunities to sport this versatile color.


Purple Ties

Purple Ties Guide

This introspective color inspires high ideals and stimulates the imagination. It promotes harmony, stability, and peace of mind. Long associated with royalty and nobility, purple has power. It exudes wealth, extravagance, a sense of luxury that demands respect. Purple tie colors convey that you are an ambitious and self-assured leader.

Lavender says that you are unique and sensitive. Wearing lilac shows that you are extroverted and energetic. Mauve indicates that you like to do things the right way and you aspire to higher ideals. Amethyst is a mystical color that suggests you are an evolved soul. Adding plum ties to your wardrobe says you traditional and honorable.

Fashion trendsetters are adding jewel-toned shades of purple to their ensembles from head to toe. While this color may not be everyone’s cup of tea, adding luxury touches like velvet bow ties or silk neckties to your formal wear creates a sharp contemporary look. Styles with intricate paisley or floral patterns will instantly elevate formal, business, and casual wear with ease.


Red Ties


Traditionally known as the “power tie” in political and business circles, red tie colors go far beyond this aggressive label. The color red evokes passion, desire, energy, and action. It stimulates and excites the mind and senses. Red is an attention-getting color that indicates that you are confident, determined, and courageous.

Maroon ties denote that you are controlled and prone to more thoughtful action. Crimson tie colors say you are determined to succeed without rocking the boat. Additionally, it helps to express your sensuality. Scarlet neckties, bow ties, and accessories convey enthusiasm and a fun-loving nature that has a touch of defiance. Red ties and accessories add a lively pop of color to your accessory collection. Including shades of red into your business, casual, or formal wear will make you stand out from those around you.

Read also about men’s suits colors and what they mean.


Yellow Ties


Uplifting and illuminating, the color yellow stimulates and energizes the brain. Wearing yellow coveys that you are a methodical and decisive as well as a good communicator who enjoys a challenge. It shows that you have confidence, enthusiasm, and a creative and original personality. Including yellow neckties and bowties into your wardrobe indicates that you are happy as well as optimistic. Tie colors in shades of yellow in pastel, lemon, citrine, and gold add an eye-catching pop of color and visual interest to your look. Matching ties and pocket squares keep your look clean and pulled together without being over the top. Yellow ties are a smart choice for Spring and Summer business, formal and casual looks. They effortlessly brighten up as well as energize your look.


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