• Thu, Dec 5 - 12:45 pm ET

Pantone’s 2014 Color Of The Year Is Overwhelming And Unflattering

Pantone's Color of the Year 2014 is Radiant Orchid

Image: Shutterstock

For those of you who might not know (I certainly didn’t until relatively recent years), Pantone Color Institute sets color standards to be used in design industries in order to help keep things consistent across the commercial board. Annually, it picks its “Color of the Year,” which everybody makes a big ol’ deal of. A few years ago it was Honeysuckle, last year it was Emerald. Generally speaking, I enjoy the colors it picks. I think they can be easily adapted to most people’s styles and incorporated into their wardrobes or makeup routines. However, I’m not quite as sure about 2014′s shade.

The color is called Radiant Orchid, and it’s an incredibly bright hue somewhere between pink and purple (more leaning toward the latter, though). According to Pantone’s Executive Director Leatrice Eiseman, it’s a unique shade for creative types:

“It’s a little different, it’s a little off the beaten path, and it’s not a primary color. It’s an invitation to innovation. The purple family offers (an) opportunity to do creative things.

“People associate purple with creativity and originality — and those are very valued today. We see words like that being used to describe technologies and products that are seen as innovative and with an approach you haven’t tried before.”

Joanna called it “Nicki Minaj purple,” while Liz says it would “look great on the Queen”–both are statements I can agree with, but I’m not sure I can see it on most folks. To be fair, I may just be projecting because I look horrible in purple. Like, really horrible. So this post could just be a giant resentful lament on my complexion’s inability to hang with violets and lavenders.

Last year, I actually really enjoyed Sephora + Pantone Universe’s Color of the Year Collection, which featured eyeliner, mascara, shadows and nail polish, all in a striking shade of Emerald Green, a color that (in my opinion, at least) looks pretty great on every skin tone. But could this year’s color do the same?

While I think Radiant Orchid is a theoretically cool shade, and could potentially be nice on specific skin tones in small doses, I don’t think it’s a good one for most. But I’m sure we’ll see approximately 8 billion fashion editorials that use it so who knows? Maybe it will actually be adapted and applied well enough in those to give us normals a chance and some ideas about wearing it.

MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 19: A model walks the runway during the Max Mara show as a part of Milan Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2014 on September 19, 2013 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images)

MILAN, ITALY – SEPTEMBER 19: A model walks the runway during the Max Mara show as a part of Milan Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2014 on September 19, 2013 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images)

Also, a kind of cool note: it’s almost like Max Mara Spring-Summer 2014 collection collection predicted the new color via the above photo, showing an orchid-colored dress on a model walking in front of an emerald one. ~*Spooky!*~

Share This Post:
  • Randi

    At first I thought it said “rancid” orchid…not radiant…haha..

  • Anne Marie Hawkins

    I like it as an accent color, but you guys are right, the only ones who could pull off this color as a full-body look are Nikki Minaj and Queen Elizabeth.

    • Alexis H

      I agree! I would definitely wear accessories in this color (and I can see this being a neat shade for eyeshadow), but a dress in this color seems like way too much. I would feel like a cartoon character.

    • Anne Marie Hawkins

      I get the feeling it would look really shocking and cool as a matte lip color.

    • Alexis H

      I agree, but it would be tricky to get it to work on every complexion! Pale lips like that never work on me. Not exactly a universal shade like in years past.

  • http://carrie-murphy.com/ Carrie Murphy

    I like it! It’s fuchsia! What’s not to like?

  • Lindsey Conklin

    Yikes! Not a fan, definitely not my color.

  • Mandie

    I need a lipstick in exactly this color. Very Jetsons Barbie.

  • Amber Dawn

    I actually like it. I don’t think I would wear it head to toe though without any relief.

  • Amanda

    I really like it. I would totally wear clothes in this color. But I am known for my rather bright taste.