Adding Color to Your Promotional Products

Alyssa Mertes

Alyssa Mertes

Promo Expert

Published: March 6th, 2019

If you’ve ever painted a bedroom, gotten a manicure, or tried to finish a SpongeBob SquarePants™ coloring book without a yellow crayon, you know the right color can make or break your aesthetic. After all, the guy who lives in a pineapple under the sea shouldn’t be blue or red. That’s just wrong.

The same goes for the imprint color you choose when it comes to your promotional giveaways.

What Is an Imprint Color?

You have many options when it comes to printing your logo or advertising message on an item. Hands down, the most popular methods for adding your design are screen printing or pad printing, and the sky's the limit with what colors can be printed.

What Is an Imprint Color?

As such, you have many imprint colors to choose from, in addition to the actual color of the product. For example, you may choose a royal blue tote bag with neon green as the imprint color, such as the bag pictured here. Quick RX Pharmacy wanted to order these canvas tote bags with their unique logo colors represented. Our sales team worked with them on choosing an imprint color that would show off their logo.

What Is an Imprint Color?

Of course, you’re not limited to only this color combination. Our design team often recommends going with a black or white imprint, such as the Quality Logo Products® logo on this custom lunch bag.

What Is an Imprint Color?

What Imprint Colors Are Available?

It is important not to confuse your imprint color options with the item colors you have available for your product. This is a common misconception in the promo world, but it’s an important distinction. Your logo may be a vibrant green, but the custom tumbler you’re interested in ordering comes only in that exact color. If this is the case, your logo will be as invisible as a spooky ghost, leaving you to forever be haunted by your poor promo printing decision.

What Imprint Colors Are Available?

Luckily, most of the items at Quality Logo Products® come in a variety of colors. You can choose from many different shades to print your logo or text. Simply scroll below “How We Add Your Logo” on the product’s page to explore your options. From there, you can choose the colors you’d like to use for your custom design. For example, the Plastic Mason Jar With Handle comes with over 20 imprint color options.

What Imprint Colors Are Available?

Top 5 Imprint Color Tips & Tricks

Now that you’re an imprint color expert, it’s time to figure out how you want to print your design. Our awesome sales representatives at Quality Logo Products® put their heads together to offer you their top pieces of advice when it comes to choosing an imprint color. Follow these tried and true design tips to make sure your promo stands out from the crowd!

Quote Icon

Keep your design and colors simple. Sometimes a small subtle imprint makes the biggest impression.

– Jaimie S., Customer Service Rep

  • Tip #1: It’s All About Contrast

    The logo or message you want to print needs to pop against your item. Go with something that stands apart, like a lighter color on a dark item or vice versa. This is how you can be sure your logo gets noticed! For example, the white text is more legible on the black tote bag.

    Tip #1: It’s All About Contrast
    Tip #1: It’s All About Contrast
  • Tip #2: Let’s Make Things Clear

    Imprint colors are not 100% opaque for screen-printed or pad-printed logos, which means the color may be a slightly different tone on the item. For example, a yellow imprint on a blue product will appear slightly greenish, a red imprint on a blue product will appear slightly purplish, and so on.

    Tip #2: Let’s Make Things Clear
    Tip #2: Let’s Make Things Clear
  • Tip #3: Give Your Logo a Complement

    Do you remember learning about the color wheel in art class? Every color has a soulmate that, when paired together, always looks amazing! Try a combination of yellow and purple, blue and orange, or green and red.

    Tip #3: Give Your Logo a Complement
    Tip #3: Give Your Logo a Complement
  • Tip #4: Always Use a Logo Color

    You should always have your logo color represented in your promo. For instance, if your logo has gray and white, consider printing your advertising message on a trendy marble product. The other option would be to print your logo on an item in one solid dark color like maroon or navy.

    Tip #4: Always Use a Logo Color
    Tip #4: Always Use a Logo Color
  • Tip #5 Try Tone on Tone

    Not many people are daring enough to try it, but colors in the same family work well together. Picture a baby blue coffee mug with your company name and contact information written in royal blue or a dark purple pen with a nice lavender logo.

    Tip #5 Try Tone on Tone
    Tip #5 Try Tone on Tone
  • Bonus Tip: Comic Sans Is Always a No!

    Never resort to Comic Sans when it comes to the text you print on your promo. The font always looks awful, no matter which color you choose, and Comic Sans is an easy way to become the laughing stock of any promotional event. If you want to choose a better font, you can play with some options in our Free Font Preview Tool.

    Bonus Tip: Comic Sans Is Always a No!
    Bonus Tip: Comic Sans Is Always a No!

Find Your True Colors: Pantone Color Matcher

It can feel overwhelming to find the right imprint color for your advertising items. That’s why we offer a PMS Color Matcher. This free marketing tool generates a list of Pantone colors for your logo, keeping your imprint consistent with your brand.

Find Your True Colors: Pantone Color Matcher
The World Is Your Oyster

The World Is Your Oyster

At the end of the day, the way you customize your promos is entirely up to you. Feel free to be bold with your design choices and remember to always include some kind of brand color in your final product. The best part is we will always send a free digital proof with every order. This is your chance to see your colors in action and make any changes.

The Bottom Line

You have a lot to remember when choosing an imprint color, but our knowledgeable customer service reps are only one call away. Reach out at any point in your order, and they can help you find the best colors for your promos!

Alyssa Mertes

Alyssa is the Lead Copywriter at Quality Logo Products. As a promo expert, she's uncovered the world’s first custom tote bag, interviewed the guy behind rock band ACDC’s logo, and had a piece published by the Advertising Specialty Institute, a leader in the promotional products industry.