Transform your CV: professional CV colours

Transform your CV: professional CV colours

Have you ever wondered what the best colours for a CV are? Or whether colours and meanings are influential when applying for a job? Well, there is such a thing as colour psychology and it’s proven that colours have meanings for some or can at least project certain feelings or even induce different emotions.

So, what kinds of colours should you use for your CV and are there any colours that you should avoid when designing a CV? Read up on colours and meanings before learning about the best colours for a CV!


cv colours

Colours and meanings

It has been said many a time that colours have certain abilities in creating and influencing moods as well as representing emotions, feelings and energies. So what kind of colours and meanings are the right kind for your job application? Read our list of colours and meanings.

Red: A colour often associated with passion and love, yet at the same time with danger and anger. Red is used as many companies’ colours and can often symbolise motivation and determination.

Orange: Warm, yet said to inflict anger, orange can be perceived to emit force, productivity, determination and strength.

Pink: Stereotypically said to resemble feminity, pink is a soft colour that emits love, passion and affection.

Blue: Hand in hand with its partner pink, blue is a colour typically used for masculinity, although nowadays it is a much more neutral colour. Many companies use blue as a company colour and it is often a CV template colour, as It can project a feel of professionalism, particularly navy blue.

Green: Optimism, balance, environment and nature seem to be the typical energies of the colour green. Green is also the colour symbol for eco-friendly campaigns, companies and products.

Yellow: It’s not common to see yellow on a CV, given that it is a particularly bright colour. Although it is said to emit feelings of happiness, creativity and joy.

Purple: A mystical and inspiring colours, various shades of purple have been known to portray spirituality, magic and even luxury.

Brown: Some refer to the colour brown as a boring colour and others think of brown as a practical, orderly and neutral colour. Brown can be a suitable colour to use on the design of a CV template and also projects feelings of groundedness and stability.

Grey: A neutral colour and often a favourite for CV colours and design, grey is a classic colour and also used to portray elegance, professionalism and modesty. The ideal characteristic of the colour grey is that it’s timeless.

Black (and white): Many CVs feature black and white colour and nothing else. Black and white are classic colours and used consistently in all paperwork, meaning that it is natural to have a CV in simple black font and nothing else. If you are doubtful about using colours, you can’t go wrong using a simple black and while CV format. You can find many modern CV templates that only use the colours black and white.

Gold: Royal, luxurious and divine, gold is a prestigious colour. It’s not used as a CV colour often, although not much can escape the rise of creative CVs, so if you’re a designer or work in the art industry, it may be a colour to consider depending on the type of job or company to which you’re applying.

Silver: Not as prestigious as gold but equally exuberant, silver is not used as a colour on traditional or standard CVs. However, see the above comments for gold to learn more about creative CVs.

Best colours for CV

Colour choice depends on personal taste, the type of job and the company to which you are applying. The best colours for a CV are usually neutral colours or darker shades of blue, purple and likewise. That said, there’s nothing wrong with using a lighter shade if that’s what you feel will work for your job application. In fact, pastel shades are also common to see on a CV.

Pastel colours are a calm CV design approach that might seem less aggressive. This could be particularly beneficial to those who are applying for a job where playful, supportive or attentive characteristics are required. For example, a nanny CV or teacher CV.

Company colours can be connecting for the candidate and recruiter, as well. For example, if you know that the company colour is red, add a touch of red to your CV. This can be indirectly appealing to the recruiter before they’ve even read your professional profile.

If you’re still not sure which CV colours to use, try using our online CV builder for free and take advantage of the many HR-approved templates that make creating a CV much easier.