Colors in Korean|An Ultimate List with all shades (2024)

You’ll enjoy your next family trip to Korea more if you learn how to use colors in Korean conversation.

You’ll be able to get along with people in Korea, navigate around the country, and understand when someone is talking about color-coded holidays.

But what if you want to learn rainbow colors in Korean, not just basic ones

Luckily, it’s not that difficult.

Here’s a complete list of basic and advanced Korean colors, plus different shades, with pronunciation, examples, and exercises. You’ll understand the deeper meaning of colors in Korean culture and why some colors are so popular in Korea.

Alright world, it’s time to Let’s get started!


The word “color” in Korean is translated as색 (saek)! You can also use the word 색깔 (saekkkal) instead.

There are two main differences between these words is that 색 (saek) is used to talk about a really specific color and talk about color, in general, you can use the word 색깎.

Here are a few examples of how you would use 색깔 in a sentence:

This lipstick is a good color.

이 립스틱은 색깔이 좋아요.  

We have eight different colors.

8가지 색깔이 있어요.  

If you’re referring to a specific color, the word 색  is added to the end of the specific color, such as blue or green.

For example, the color green is 초록색. This is the form of the word you’ll see in a Korean dictionary.

colors in korean

Here is a list of some common colors in Korean for beginners

  1. Red in Korean is 빨간색 (ppalkansaek)
  2. Orange in Korean is 주황색 (juhwangsaek)
  3. Yellow in Korean is 노란색 (noransaek)
  4. Green in Korean is 초록색 (choroksaek)
  5. Blue in Korean is 파란색 (paransaek)
  6. Purple in Korean is 보라색 (bolasaek)
  7. White in Korean is 하얀색 (hayansaek)
  8. Black in Korean is 검정색 (geomjeongsaek)
  9. Gray in Korean is 회색 (hoesaek)
  10. Pink in Korean is 분홍색 (bunhongsaek)
  11. Rainbow in Korean is 무지개색 (mujigaesaek)
  12. Brown in Korean is 갈색 (galsaek)
  13. Silver in Korean is 은색 (eunsaek)

We just see the list of the most common Korean color names you can use with friends, family, coworkers, siblings, or even strangers.

But before I do that, I want to talk about how colors are used in the Korean sentences


Red In Korean-빨간색 (ppalkansaek)

colors in korean

Red in Korean is translated as 빨강(ppalkang). if you want to say “red color” you can use the word 빨간색 (ppalkansaek) which is the standard noun form The adjective form of the color blue is 빨간 (bbal-gan).

you can use this when you want to describe things.

Another adjective form of the color blue is 빨갛다(ppalgata) means “to be red”. You can use this when you want to state that something is red.

Here’s how to say Red in Korean

  • 빨강(ppalkang)-red in korean
  • 빨간 (bbal-gan)-Red in korean (adjective form)
  • 빨간색 (ppalkansaek)- the color Red  (noun form)
  • 빨갛다(ppalgata) – to be Red(the dictionary form)


It’s a red truck.

빨간 트럭이에요.

It’s a red strawberry

빨간 딸기입니다.ppalgan ttalgiimnida

Tomatoes are red

토마토는 빨갛다.- tomatoneun ppalgata

Do you have a red shirt?

빨간 셔츠 있어요?ppalgan syocheu issoyo

My dress is red

내 드레스는 빨간색이야-nae deuresseuneun ppalgansaegiya

 I don’t like the color red.

 저는 빨간색 안 좋아해요. 

Orange In Korean-주황색[juhwangsaek].

colors in korean

Orange In Korean is 주황[juhwang]. When you want to say “Orange color” in korean you can use the word  주황색[juhwangsaek]


The lipstick i bought is orange

내가 산 립스틱은 주황색이에요.naega san ripsseutigeun juhwangsaegieyo

My bag is orange.

내 가방은 주황색이야 -nae gabang-eun juhwangsaek-iya 

It’s a orange carrot.

주황 당근입니다.juhwang danggeunimnida

Yellow In Korean

colors in korean

Yellow in Korean is translated as 노랑 [no-rang]and it is the noun form of the color Yellow. To say “the color yellow/yellow color”, you would say 노란색 [no-ran-sek] or 노랑색 [no-rang-sek]. Another way to say yellow in Korean is 황색[hwang-sek] which is used to describe skin color. Another adjective form of yellow is 노랑다 (no-rang-tta) literally means “to be yellow”. 

Here’s how to say yellow in Korean

  • 노랑 [no-rang]-Yellow in Korean (noun form)
  • 노란 [no-ran]- Yellow in Korean (adjective form)
  • 노란색 [no-ran-sek]- the color yellow  (noun form)
  • 노랑다 (no-rang-tta) – to be Yellow(the dictionary form)
  • 황색[hwang-sek]- Yellow in Korean


Yellow is the color of summer.

 노란색은 여름의 색 noransaek-eun yeoleum-ui saeg. 

Look at the yellow flower

노란 꽃을 보세요.noran kkocheul boseyo

Green In Korean

colors in korean

Green in Korean is 초록[Chorok]. When you want to say “Green color” in Korean, you can use the word 초록색[Chorok-saek].


Jenny drink a green drink

제니는 초록색 음료를 마신다-jenineun nogsaeg eumlyoleul masinda

The leaves are green

잎이 초록색이다-ipi chorokssaegida

Blue In Korean-

colors in korean

Blue in Korean is 파랑 [pa-rang]and it is the noun form of color blue. When you are describing another object using 파랑, then the word changes to 파란 [pa-ran]. If you want to say “the color blue/blue color” itself , just use the word 파랑색. Another adjective form of the color blue is 파랗다 (pa-ra-tta) literally means “to be blue”. 

푸른 [poo-reun] also means blue color in korean. For example, ‘blue sky’ in Korean would be often called 푸른 하늘, instead of 파란 하늘

Here’s how to say blue in korean

  • 파랑 [pa-rang-Blue in korean (noun form)
  • 파란 [pa-ran]- Blue in korean (adjective form)
  • 파랑색 – the color blue  (noun form)
  • 파랗다 (pa-ra-tta) – to be blue(the dictionary form)
  • 푸른 [poo-reun]- blue in korean

Here is another example of a sentence similar to the one above:


  • I like the color blue.-파랑 좋아해요. (pa-rang jo-a-hae-yo) 
  • The blue shirt-파란 셔츠-paran syocheu
  • A Blue pencil -파란 연필-paran yonpil
  • The car is blue.-자동차 파랗다.  (ja-dong-cha pa-ra-tta)

Here is an example of how we can use it in a sentence:

I want to buy a blue sofa

파란 소파를 사고 싶어요-palansaeg sopaleul sago sip-eoyo

The blue bird is very pretty

파란 새는 매우 예쁘다.paran saeneun maeu yeppeuda

My favorite color is blue.

가장 좋아하는 색은 파란색입니다. gajang joh-ahaneun saeg-eun paransaek-ibnida

The skirt is blue

치마기 파래요.-chimagi paraeyo

Indigo/navy In Korean-

colors in korean

Navy in Korean is 남[nam]. When you want to say “Navy color” in korean you can use the word  남색[namsaek].


Jimin loves indigo cardigan

지민이는 남색 가디건을 좋아한다.

It’s an indigo book.

남색 책이에요. 

My dad dislikes the color indigo.

우리 아빠는 남색 안 좋아해요. 

purple In Korean

colors in korean

Purple in Korean is 보라 (bora). When you want to say “purple color” in Korean you can use the word 보라색 (borasaek).


My room is purple

내 방은 보라색이야-nae bang-eun bolasaeg-iya

The purple flower is so pretty

보라색 꽃이 너무 예쁘다- bolasaeg kkoch-i neomu yeppeuda


Black In Korean.

colors in korean

Black in Korean is translated as 검정 [geom-jung] or 흑 [heuk]. When you want to say “purple color” in Korean. you can use the word 검정색 (geomjeongsaek), 검은색 (geomeunsaek), or 까만색 (kkamansaek). 검정 is describing another object or noun, then the word slightly changes to 검은 [geom-eun].

Here’s how to say Black in Korean in 6 different ways

  • 검정 [geom-jung]/흑 [heuk].-Black in korean (noun form)
  • 검은 [geom-eun]. Black in korean (adjective form)
  • 검정색 (geomjeongsaek)- the color black  (noun form)
  • 까만색 (kkamansaek)- the color black
  • 검은색 (geomeunsaek)- the color black
  • 까맣다 (kkamata)-black in korean(dictionary form)


까만 곰이에요. — It’s a black bear.

그는 검은색을 좋아해요. — He likes the color black.

White In Korean

colors in korean

White in Korean translated as  하얀 (hyayan) and 흰 (huin).When you want to say “white color” in Korean. you can use the word 하얀색 (hyayansaek) and 흰색 (huinsaek).Another adjective form to say white in Korean is 하얗다 (hayata) means “to be white”.

Here’s how to say white in Korean in 6 different ways

  • 하얀 (hyayan) and 흰 (huin).-White in korean(adjective )
  • 하얀색 (hyayansaek)- the color white (noun form)
  • 흰색 (huinsaek)- the color white  (noun form)
  • 하얗다 (hayata)- the color white(adjective dictionary form)


It’s white snow.

하얀 눈이에요. 

I put the book on the white table

나는 책을 하얀 테이블 위에 놓았다.naneun chaegeul hayan teibeul wie noattta

Panda bears are black and white.

팬더 곰은 검고 하얗다.

He dislikes the color white.

그는 하얀색을 안 좋아해요. 

Gray in Korean

colors in korean

When you want to say “gray color” in Korean you can use the word 회색(hoesaeg).

The pencil is gray

연필은 회색이다.yonpireun hwesaegida

 I want to buy gray socks

회색 양말을 사고 싶어요-hoesaeg yangmal-eul sago sip-eoyo

Brown In Korean

colors in korean

When you want to say “Brown color” in Korean you can use the word 갈색(galsaeg).


It’s a brown rabbit.

갈색 토끼예요.

Irene dyed her hair brown

아이린은 머리를 갈색으로 염색했다- ailin-eun meolileul galsaeg-eulo yeomsaeghaessda

I don’t like brown shoes

갈색 신발을 않 좋아해요-galssaek sinbareul an joahaeyo

My mom likes the color brown.

우리 엄마는 갈색을 좋아해요. 

Pink In Korean

colors in korean

Pink in Korean is 분홍 (bunhong). When you want to say “pink color” in korean you can use the word  분홍색 (bunhongsaek).


Does this pink dress looks good on me?

이 분홍색 드레스가 나한테 잘 어울리나요?

i bunhongsaek deuresseuga nahante jal oulrinayo

The dress is pink

그 드레스는 분홍색이다.geu deuresseuneun bunhongsaegida

My dress is pink 

내 드레스는 분홍색이에요-nae deuresseuneun bunhongsaegieyo

Purple In Korean

colors in korean

Purple in Korean is 보라 (bora). When you want to say “purple color” in Korean, you can use the word  보라색 (borasaek)


My room is purple

내 방은 보라색이야-nae bang-eun bolasaeg-iya

The purple flower is so pretty

보라색 꽃이 너무 예쁘다- bolasaeg kkoch-i neomu yeppeuda

Apricot In Korean

When you want to say “purple color” you can use the word  살구색 (salgusaek)


My mother likes apricot bag

 어머니는 살구색 가방을 좋아하십니다.omonineun salgusaek gabangeul joahasimnida

The bag is apricot

가방은 살구색이다.-gabangeun salgusaegida

How to Say Advanced colors in korean and Shades?

Gold In Korean

colors in korean

When you want to say “Gold color” in Korean you can use the word  금색 (geumsaek).


It’s a gold ring


The book is golden

책은 황금이다-chaeg-eun hwang-geum-ida

Silver In Korean

colors in korean

When you want to say “Silver color” you can use the word  검은색(gomeunsaek)

I don’t have a silver bracelet

은팔찌가 없어요- eunpaljjiga opssoyo

I plate is silver not black

접시는 검은색이 아닌 은색입니다.-jopssineun gomeunsaegi anin eunsaegimnida

Bronze In Korean

When you want to say “Bronze color” you can use the word  청동색 (chongdongsaek)


That door is bronze color

저 문은 청동색이다.jo muneun chongdongsaegida

This bronze door is heavy

이 청동 문은 무거워- i chongdong muneun mugowo

Khaki In Korean

When you want to say “khaki color” you can use the word  카키색 (kakisaek)


Did you see my khaki shirt?

내 카키색 셔츠 봤어?-nae kakisaeg syeocheu bwass-eo?

The shirt is gray, not khaki.

그 셔츠는 카키색이 아니라 회색이다.

geu syocheuneun kakisaegi anira hwesaegida

Sky Blue In Korean

colors in korean

When you want to say “sky blue color”, you can use the word  하늘색 (haneulssaek)


I like sky blue dress

하늘색 드레스가 좋아요-haneulssaek deuresseuga joayo

The dress is sky blue

드레스는 하늘색이다.deuresseuneun haneulssaegida

Maroon in Korean

When you want to say “maroon color”, you can use the word  적갈색(jeoggalsaeg)


I don’t have a maroon bag

나는 적갈색 가방이 없다-naneun jokkkalsaek gabangi optta

The bag is maroon

가방은 적갈색이다.

청록색 — Turquoise

When you want to say “Turquoise color”, you can use the word  청록색(chongnokssaek)


I want to buy a Turquoise purse

나는 터키식 지갑을 사고 싶다.naneun tokisik jigabeul sago siptta

I think that’s turquoise.

그게 청록색인 거 같아요.geuge chongnokssaegin go gatayo

연보라색 — Light purple

When you want to say “light purple color”, you can use the word 연보라색.

My mother likes light purple curtains. 

어머니는 연보라색 커튼을 좋아하십니다.omonineun yonborasaek koteuneul joahasimnida

I’m into light purple this year

저 올해 연보라색에 꽂혔어요 -jo olhae yonborasaege kkochossoyo

Light green/yellow-green -연두색(yeondusaeg)

colors in korean

When you want to say “Light green/yellow-green color” in Korean, you can use the word  연두색(yeondusaeg)

Do you have light green trousers?

연두색 바지 있어요?yondusaek baji issoyo

 Joy’s hairband is light green

조이의 머리띠는 연두색이다.joie morittineun yondusaegida

Her  trouse is light green not green

그녀의 바지는 녹색이 아니라 밝은 녹색입니다.geunyeoui bajineun nogsaeg-i anila balg-eun nogsaeg-ibnida.


When you want to say “beige color”, you can use the word 베이지색(beijisaek)

Do you see that beige suit over there?

저기 저 베이지색 옷 보이죠?

Other shades in Korean are

  • Ivory-아이보리색-aiborisaek
  • Mint – 민트색-minteusaek
  • vermilion/ dark red in korean-진홍색-jinhongsaek
  • Scarlet-주홍색-juhongsaek
  • Wine -와인색-wainsaek
  • Blue- green in korean-청록색- chongnokssaek


Colors in Korean are used as both nouns and adjectives. 

To use colors in Korean sentences, all You need to do is use the word 색 (saek) for the adjective versions of the color. When you want to say a particular color, you can say the color adjective and add 색 (saek) at the end.

On the other hand, you can also use the noun version of the color by itself.

There are two exceptions to these rules.

The colors red, blue, yellow, black, and white follow a different pattern than the other colors.

Colors in Korean as nouns|Using Korean Colors to Describe Objects and Places

Colors can also act as nouns when they represent a person or object.

To use colors in Korean sentences, all You need to do is to use the noun version of the color by itself.

For example

빨강 [Ppalgang] means red and 노랑[norang] means yellow. In this case, you don’t need to use the 색 (saek)

Here are some example sentences.

BTS ballons are purple

BTS 풍선은 보라색이다.-bitiesseu pungsoneun borasaegida

Black is my favorite color

블랙은 내가 제일 좋아하는 색이야-beullaeg-eun naega jeil joh-ahaneun saeg-iya

I don’t like the color red.

저는 빨간색 안 좋아해요. 

The motorcycle is red.

오토바이는 빨간색이다.otobaineun ppalgansaegida

Banana is yellow

바나나는 노란색이다.banananeun noransaegida

Jennie likes pink

제니는 핑크를 좋아해- jenineun pingkeuleul joh-ahae

Dahyun is wearing a skyblue tshirt

다현이는 하늘색 티셔츠를 입고 있어요.

dahyonineun haneulssaek tisyocheureul ipkko issoyo

Colors in Korean as adjectives

Colors are used as adjectives when they describe a subject or noun. When describing the color of an object, say the color first and then follow the object. You can drop Saek (색) if you prefer.

But the colors red, blue, yellow, black, and white follow a different pattern than the other colors. When you’re using these colors to describe an object, you can drop the ending 색.

For example, the Korean word for yellow is 노란색. However, if you want to say “a yellow house,” you can drop 색 and simply say 노란 차.

On the other hand, if you wanted to describe an orange house, you’d have to keep the 색 ending and say 주황색 차.

Let me explain with examples. 

  • A black cat-검은 고양이-gomeun goyangi
  • Purple sofa-보라색 소파-borasaek sopa
  • A white snowman-하얀 눈사람.-hayan nunssaram
  • Red hat-빨간 모자-ppalgan moja
  • Green motorcycle-녹색 오토바이-nokssaek otobai
  • The white dog-흰 개-huin gae
  • The silver ring-은반지-eunbanji
  • Blue sky-파란 하늘- palan haneul
  • Brown desk-갈색 책상-galssaek chaekssang
  • Pink laptop-핑크 노트북-pingkeu noteubug
  • Blue towel-파란 수건-paran sugon
  • Orange clothes-주황색 옷-juhwangsaek ot
  • Yellow tulip-노란튤립-norantyulrip
  • The green apple-초록사과-chorokssagwa
  • Purple grapes-보라색 포도-bolasaeg podo

Let’s see some Example sentences

I like green bicycles

자전거 초록색이에요 (jajeongeo choroksaegieyo)

It’s a yellow duck.

노란 오리예요. 

BTS wore black shoes

방탄소년단은 검은색 구두를 신었다

I like white pants

하얀 바지를 좋아해요-hayan bajireul joahaeyo

It’s an orange carrot.

주황색 당근이에요. 

This yellow bike is expensive

이 노란 자전거는 비싸다-i nolan jajeongeoneun bissada

Lisa likes red lipstick

리사는 빨간 립스틱을 좋아해- lisaneun ppalgan libseutig-eul joh-ahae

 Lee Minho is wearing a navy blue mask

이민호는 남색 마스크를 쓰고 있다.

iminhoneun namsaek maseukeureul sseugo ittta

How to say what is your favorite color in Korean?

If you want to ask someone their favorite color you can use these Korean phrases depending on the person’s age and formality level.

What’s your favorite color? Which color do you like the most?


What’s your favorite color?

제일 좋아하는 색은 뭐예요?

(jeil johahaneun saekeun mwoyeyo?)


What’s your favorite color?

너가좋아하는색깔은뭐야?/무슨 색을 좋아해?

You can answer when someone asks you about your favorite color like this


I like the blue color

파란색을 좋아해요
palansaeg-eul joh-ahaeyo

My favorite color is blue.

내가 가장 좋아하는 색은 파란색이다.
naega gajang joahaneun saegeun paransaegida

I really like the color blue.

저는 파란색 정말 좋아해요.

I don’t like the color red.

저는 빨간색 안 좋아해요.


I like the color blue the most

나는 제일 파란색을 좋아해.

I like color blue

푸른 색이 좋다

My favorite color is blue.

내가 가장 좋아하는 색은 파란색이다.
naega gajang joahaneun saegeun paransaegida

Let’s Modify Colors In Korean

Like in the English language,  you can modify colors in Korean by saying light colors, pastel colors, and bright colors. 

Nowadays, pastel colors have been a trend for graphic designs and you’ll find a lot of pastels and light colors in products and make-up kits. 

To say the word pastel in Korean, they use 파스텔 (paseutel).

The Korean word for bright or vivid colors is 선명한 (seonmyeonghan).

You can use밝은 (balkeun)for light colors, and for dark colors, they use 어두운 (eoduun). 

To say light or dark colors in Korean, just add these words 밝은 (balkeun) for light colors, and 어두운 (eoduun) for dark before the color, and you’re good to go. 

Here is how to say light, dark, pastel, or vivid colors in Korean.

  • pastel color – 파스텔 톤의 색paseutel tonui saek
  • soft color – 부드러운 색budeureoun saek
  • light color – 밝은 색balgeun saek
  • dark color – 어두운 색eoduun saek

But, you have to remember not all light colors,you cannot use 밝은 (balkeun), such as “light blue.” Koreans say 하늘색 (haneulsaek) which means sky blue/ light blue.


Colors in englishColors in koreanLight shadeDark shade
brown갈색밝은 갈색어두운갈색

Using Korean Colors at the End of a Sentence

you can use the Korean colors red, blue, yellow, black, and white at the end of a sentence. When you want to say that an object is a certain color, You can use this sentence structure.

The five Korean words for colors below are descriptive verbs (adjectives) that have base forms. Here are the base forms and the adjective form when it’s placed in front of a noun.

Color in EnglishBase forms in Koreanverb/Adjectives form in Korean
Red빨간 (ppalgan)빨갛다 (ppalgata)
Yellow노란 (noran)노랗다 (norata)
Black까만 (kkaman)까맣다 (kkamata)
Blue파란 (paran)파랗다 (parata)
white하얀 (hayan)하얗다 (hayata)

Let me explain with examples.

  • 새는 파랗다.— The bird is blue. (plain form)  
  • 새가파래요- The bird is blue. (polite informal conjugation)
  • 펜이 까맣다.—The pen is black. (plain form) 
  • 펜이 까매요.- The pen is black. (polite informal conjugation)
  • 토끼가 하얗다.—The rabbit is white. (plain form) 
  • 토끼가 하얘요.-The rabbit is white. (polite informal conjugation)
  • 병아리는 노랗다.-The chick is yellow.(plain form)
  • 병아리는 노래요-The chick is yellow.(polite informal conjugation)

If you want to talk about the color of an object and need to use a different color than the five above (red, blue, yellow, black and white), you can simply add the verb “to be” to the end of the color name.

For example, the word for pink is 분홍색. If you want to say “The skirt is pink,” you can say it like

  • 치마이 분홍색이다. — The skirt is pink. (plain form)
  • 치마이 분홍색이에요.- The skirt is pink. (polite informal conjugation)


The seed is yellow.

그 씨앗은 노랗다.

She is very fair-skinned.

그녀는 살이 참 하얗다

This apple is red

이 사과는 빨갛다.- i sagwaneun ppalgata

The sky is blue.

하늘이 파랗다-haneuri parata

The watch is gold

시계는 금이다- sigyeneun geumida

How to Say Hair Colors in Korean 

Hair color is essential to describe yourself and others. Describing a person or any other living being’s features often relies on colors as adjectives.

Describing hair colors in Korean is very simple.

머리 색깔 means Hair colors in Korean. To describe hair colors, All you have to do is to say the color of the hair and add 머리 at the end (a shortened version of 머리카락)literally means proper and full term for hair.

 Here is the translation and the words to describe any  hair colors in Korean

  • Blond-금발 (geum-bal)
  • Brown hair-갈색 머리 (gal-saek meo-ri)
  • Dark brown hair-짙은갈색 머리 (jit-eun-gal-saek meo-ri)
  • Red hair-빨간색 머리 (bbal-gan-saek meo-ri)
  • Black hair-검은색 머리 (geom-eun-saek meo-ri)
  • Grey hair/White hair-흰 머리/백발 (hwin meo-ri/baek-bal)

Example sentences 

I have red hair

저는 빨간 머리입니다-joneun ppalgan moriimnida

My hair is black

내 머리는 검은색이에요.nae morineun gomeunsaegieyo

Suzy’s blond hair is so cool

수지의 금발이 너무 멋있어요.sujie geumbari nomu mosidoyo

She has long brown hair. 

그녀는 긴 갈색 머리를 가졌어.- geunyoneun gin galssaek morireul gajosso

my girlfriend has dark brown hair

내 여자 친구는 짙은 갈색 머리를 가지고 있습니다.

I want to become a redhead

나는 빨강머리가 되고 싶네 – naneun ppalgangmeoliga doego sipne

Mirae has blond hair. 

안종이는 금발이에요.anjongineun geumbarieyo

Bundchen is blond and fair-skinned.

번천은 금발이고 피부가 하얗다.

The blonde ate some kimbap.

금발 머리인 여자가 김밥을 먹었어요. geumbal moriin yojaga gimppabeul mogossoyo

There are some other words related to colors you might want to learn about too.

Colors – 색깔 (Saekkal)
Crayons – 크레용 (Keureyong)
Paint – 페인트 (Peinte)
Opal – 오팔 (Opal)Hue – 색조 (Saekjo)
Shade – 그늘 (Geuneul)
Tint – 색조 (Saekjo)
Palette – 팔레트 (Pallet)
Spectrum – 스펙트럼 (Seupekteureom)
Contrast – 대조 (Daejo)
Vibrant – 활기찬 (Hwalgichan)
Pastel – 파스텔 (Paseutel)
Intensity – 강도 (Gangdo)
Monochrome – 단색 (Dansaek)
Transparent or clear – 투명한 (Tumyeonghan)
Bright (color or light) – 밝은 (Balgeun)
Light or pale (color) – 연한 (Yeonhan)
Vivid (color) – 생동감 있는 (Saengdonggam inneun)
Light (color) – 옅은 (Eolkeun)
Dark (color) – 짙은 (Jiteun)


Colors played an important role in the rich history of Korea. Red, blue, black, white, and yellow are Korea’s five traditional colors called obangsaek.

You probably have seen the Korean flag which has red, blue, white, and black. each of these colors has a different meaning and history.

 These traditional colors have ancient roots in the eastern region and the natural world.

Each color is associated with an element, directions, seasons, and a legendary  animal

 It is said that colors originate from China and symbolism spread to the East Asian culture.

The Meaning of Black color In Korean culture

 Black represents the north direction, water, and winter season.

In Korean culture, black is associated with death, darkness, formality, dignity, rules, and negative connotations, such as night, death, darkness, etc.

However, the black official attire of the Joseon Dynasty was meant to represent “formality” and “dignity.” Today, black is favored for its perception as a color that represents exclusivity.

The Meaning of White In Korean Culture 

 The element white represents metal. It represents the western direction, the fall seasons, and the white tiger.

It is associated with purity, innocence, rectitude, and temperance. In the past, Koreans couldn’t afford expensive dye and wore white hanbok.

White feels almost like a representative of Korea, as Koreans have been called “Baeguiminjok” (white-clad people) by foreigners. 

Today also You‘ll see the white tiger(soohorang) as the Pyeongchang Olympics mascot.

White tigers were believed to protect the west and control, the wind.

The Meaning of Yellow color In Korean culture

Yellow is in the center, representing the earth and the sun.

As it represents the center of the other four colors, it doesn’t have a direction or guardian animal. It also represents the perfect balance of yin and yang energy.

The color yellow is associated with holiness, wealth, authority, fertility, nobility, dignity, and holiness. So yellow is the main color used by the Emperor.

Nowadays, it is often used for children because of its bright and pleasant image, but also as a warning color, implying danger because it draws attention.

The Hidden Meaning of Red  In Korean Culture

 The color red represents the south, fire, and summer. The guardian animal of the south is a phoenix.

The color red has long been believed to have shamanic properties to ward off evil spirits or bad luck, control the lives of living things, and beat back death.

As a protection against bad energy, people have used red in writing amulets, dyed their fingernails, or eaten red bean soup (Patjuk) but nowadays red become a symbol of life, passion, and creation.

The Hidden Meaning of Blue In Korean culture

The Koreans used to see blue and green as variations of the same color. So blue presents tree/wood, Strom, cloud, rain.

It represents the east direction, and its guardian is a blue dragon. Blue believes in bringing youth, spring, new beginnings, hope, utopia.

In Korean culture. Mountain, sea, and sky hues, ranging from light to dark blue, were considered to signify ‘life’ and “hope.”

 The Hidden Meaning of purple In Korean culture

Purple represents wealth and spiritual awareness. It is also used in physical, spiritual, and mental healing as well.

Color Symbolism in Early Korean Weddings

The color red is very important in Korea.

It is worn by the bride as a prosperous color that represents fire. The color yellow is worn by both the bride and groom and represents the earth.

The Joseon period was characterized by bright colors such as red, yellow, and blue worn by the people during weddings, festivals, and shamanistic rituals.

Couples were also encouraged to wear yellow underwear.

These colors contributed to a cheerful attitude among the people.

Marketing Strategies

The colors red, purple, and black represent Korean luxury. So businesses use these colors in their marketing materials, logos, brochures, business cards, etc.

Koreans believe it will drive them to increase sales and profits.

Lucky and Unlucky COLOR IN KOREAN

Red in Korea is, unlike China, not a lucky color but the color of passion, and borders on social impropriety. Writing names in red is thought to bring bad omens, including failure and death.

A long time ago, the names of the deceased were written in red on registers, gravestones, and plaques to ward off evil spirits, therefore writing someone’s name in red ink is very bad luck.

By doing that, it means they will die soon or you want them to die.

White is a lucky color in Korea, but wearing a white ribbon in your hair is considered very bad luck as the color white symbolizes Korean funerals and deaths. 

Koreans consider green to be a lucky color. Many businesses favor the color green in their storefronts to draw success.

The Secret tricks to Memorize Names of all colors in korean.

The easiest way to memorize all rainbow colors in Korean, is to recall the words “wol-hwa-su-mok-geum-to-il”( 월-화-수-목-금-토-일 ) and add “요일”(yo-il) at the end of each word.

To help you remember the days of the week, try using them in your daily life as often as possible – even if it’s only in your head!

Korean Days Of The Week Song

Did you know you can sing a song and master the 7 days of the week?

Well, what could be better than that?

Here is how Koreans do it all the time (now you can do it too!!!)

Use Flashcard And Test

Maybe mnemonics are not your thing. What about flashcards?

I know it’s an old thing(you might be using Anki too)

But When it comes to mastering Korean vocabulary, you will never regret using these fellas. 

Here are some other great resources for flashcards I found while I learn Korean online

Use Post-it notes

This tried-and-true method for learning foreign language vocabulary can be especially helpful if you’re trying to identify colors.

This trick is very simple:

all you have to do is use small post-it notes to label different items in your room, kitchen, office, or anywhere you spend a lot of time!

The best part about this is that you can easily visualize the color.

You don’t have to write down the translation on the Post-it note, as you’ll be able to see the color of the item the note is on.

Slowly, your brain will start to associate the different colors with the corresponding Spanish word.

Other Online Resources

We live in the era of the 20th century. 

And I bet you  love to surf (well, who doesn’t?)

The internet is full of free stuff and language resources that you haven’t explored yet. Here is what I found when I was learning.

Here is a list (I hope it might help you)


With a basic understanding of Korean colors, you’ll be able to not only describe the simple world around you but also your emotions too. 

And who doesn’t love talking about feelings? 

Once you know the basic Korean vocabulary, you can move on to more complex grammar structures like using adjectives, verbs, and nouns.

colors in korean

So you can go out and express yourself much more naturally. Remember, the most important part of every learner’s journey is to keep moving forward, so don’t worry if you think you need more time to master the colors in Korean language.

So say your favorite colors in Korean? What color dress are you wearing today? We challenge you to write it in Korean in the comments below!

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