Pantone's Ultra Violet colour has been iconic in 2017 — you just haven't noticed

Purple reign

Text: Adibah Isa

Image: Getty Images,

Pantone's colour of the year 2018, Ultra Violet, is a long time coming. Here's how the purple hue has impacted the world this year

A colour that has quietly risen through the ranks, purple is what Pantone's urging us to look forward to in 2018. More specifically, a blue-based purple, Pantone 18-3838 Ultra Violet. It's a colour favoured by rock and pop stars (Jimi Hendrix, David Bowie, Prince), the gay community (red and blue makes purple... remember Tinky Winky?), political solidarity and the cosmos. According to Pantone's executive director Leatrice Eiseman, Ultra Violet is a colour that "communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us towards the future".

We love purple for its versatility, and most of all, its ambiguity. In science, ultraviolet alludes to the things the naked eye can't see, suggesting intrigue around the mysteries beyond what we currently understand. It's a movement for hope in turbulent times. It's also an excuse to jump on the bandwagon, like many have thanks to Stranger Things, Harry Styles and Meghan Markle. Scroll through the gallery above to see Ultra Violet's presence in 2017, and get ready for next year's purple reign.


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