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Color shades: Neon

Colors can be grouped into many different categories. For example, neon colors are regarded as being the boldest colors in the world; sometimes they are called “fluorescence colors” because they are so bright that they seem to glow!

Neon colors are bright and bold—but they are also highly in fashion among fans of bright colors!
Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for ULTA Beauty
Neon colors, like this green purse, are popular in fashion.
Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images

Neon colors are neon because of fluorescent minerals, substances that are filled with electromagnetic radiation. In short, neons are a form of luminescence that reacts to ultraviolet light (also known as black lights). When neon colors (or basic white) are placed under black lights (which are actually purple lights), they will glow wildly—especially in clothing forms. For these reasons, neons are extremely popular in night-club attire.

Neon shades are most commonly associated with the colors of pink, orange, yellow and green. However, there is also a very bright shade of purple that is often also considered to be a part of the neon color group. Neons are extremely bright colors that draw the eyes’ attention instantaneously. Hence, they are best suited to be seen over a dark color like black since that will make the brightness of neons “pop.”

Although neons are famous for dance club clothing and Day-Glo spray paints (which were made hugely popular due to the 1980s graffiti movement), they are colors that are also commonly used for safety gear (like orange road cones and yellow security jackets) and runners wear. Additionally, the bright and playful nature of these shades has made them apparent in items that range from phone cases to backpacks to high heel shoes!

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