Blog Home Trends 2022 Color Trends

Serenity takes center stage in 2022

The wait is over. From our team of data crunchers and number munchers—and most of all, the recently unleashed Shutterstock.AI—we bring to the creative world at large the top colors for the year ahead.

That’s right, it’s that colorful time of year again and we don’t mean autumn—it’s Color Trends season! Every year our data analysts and design experts plow through billions of bits of data to reveal what colors the design world is gravitating towards next. And this time around, we’ve included added insights from Shutterstock.AI, uniquely capable of deciphering how a specific color performs in digital media—so that you can apply it in your next campaign!

The following stats are based on millions of images downloaded from around the world, wherein each individual pixel shade is tallied—along with recent click-through rate (CTR) performance. With our background and methodology done and dusted, we’re excited to introduce to you the colors climbing the charts in the year to come. And it begins with…


Calming Coral

Inhale. Exhale. Calming. Coral. Ahhh…. Feel better? This muted, peachy pastel gets along splendidly with other members of the pastel family. It plays especially well with dusty yellows and pinks for a nostalgic tint to your design work. Consider contrasting it with sky blue to round out a comforting, natural palette.

There’s a reason Calming Coral feels like a soothing bath bomb when expertly employed. You can practically (or virtually) feel the fuzz and the most typical reaction is to just… soak it in. Its warmth encourages us to embrace our vulnerability, bringing to the forefront feelings of comfort and peace.

See the Calming Coral curated image collection.

See the Calming Coral curated footage collection.


Velvet Violet

Some purples stand up and shout, desperate for attention—on the contrary, Velvet Violet whispers and draws the eye with its come-hither magnetism. And yet, it represents the boldest of our trending colors for 2022, still able to turn heads without over-the-top flamboyance. The hue carries a decidedly regal tone, confident in its dignified grace and allure.

Velvet Violet embodies purple’s traditional associations with royalty. Its natural complement is a contrasting shade of green—like emerald—which pair up in perfect harmony. Given its darker placement on the color spectrum, it also serves as a superb base for flashy accents of the neon-electric sort.

See the Velvet Violet curated image collection.

See the Velvet Violet curated footage collection.


Pacific Pink

The trendiest color in this year’s report brings to mind images of a fading flower pressed between pages of an old book. Tactile and rosy, like a still frame from your favorite Wes Anderson film. Whereas hot pink was cool for a hot minute (okay, millions of minutes), this subtle hue is about to have a banner year.

Pacific Pink is reminiscent of that inevitable blush that appears when you’re overcome by a sense of giddiness. It looks marvelous when paired with other pink and peachy tones. And like its namesake, apply it to a complementary light teal to evoke the sun setting over a glimmering Pacific beach.

See the Pacific Pink curated image collection.

See the Pacific Pink curated footage collection.

Green reigns supreme

It’s easy being green—at least, it is for ads that include it in their color scheme. Thanks to Shutterstock.AI, we can determine and share with you the performance pattern and success rate of ads employing specific colors. This year’s data shows that shades of green dominated in click-through rates and conversions. So if you want your projects to perform like a pro, consider adding a touch of emerald, jade, lime, mint, and beyond.

From extraterrestrial neon to tropical plant life, across the board green is taking the gold.

See the green curated image collection and footage collection. 

Popular colors, country by country

Our data experts also decoded the numbers for the most popular shades used region-by-region, giving a global snapshot of trending colors worldwide.