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It Matters: Color Theory & Your TCM Practice


Picture of the Earth's surface (USGS)

Color theory- the study of how colors visually interact with one another- may sound like a bunch of art school hoopla, but the psychological relevance of color is very much real and should be top of mind when building or refreshing your TCM practice. Choosing a color palette that best represents your practice's mission will help establish trust and connection with your community while establishing a calm and welcoming presence that attracts and retains new patients.


For example, research indicates that the color blue can have a calming effect, which can be beneficial in a medical environment where patients may be anxious or nervous. Similarly, the color green is often associated with nature and can create a sense of relaxation and tranquility.


We've included 5 REESHI-approved color palettes below for modern acupuncture/TCM practices that seek to establish a trustworthy and calming brand.


Color Theory: An Overview


Color theory is the study of how colors interact with each other and how they can be used in design. When building a brand, color theory is crucial because it helps to establish a visual identity that is memorable and effective in communicating the brand's values and message.

One of the main components of color theory is the color wheel, which is a circular diagram that organizes colors in a way that shows their relationship to each other. The color wheel is divided into three categories: primary colors (red, yellow, and blue), secondary colors (orange, green, and purple), and tertiary colors (yellow-green, blue-green, blue-purple, red-purple, red-orange, and yellow-orange). When selecting colors for a brand, it is important to consider the relationship between the colors on the color wheel and to choose colors that complement each other.


Another important aspect of color theory is the psychology of color. Different colors can evoke different emotions and feelings in people, and this can be used to influence the perception of a brand. For example, blue is often associated with calmness and trustworthiness, while red is associated with passion and excitement. By understanding the psychology of color, a brand can select colors that will resonate with their target audience and communicate the desired message. Read more about the psychology of color here.


Color theory is also important in creating a cohesive brand identity across both in-person and digital platforms. By establishing a cohesive color palette and using it consistently across all branded materials, an acupuncture practice can create a strong and recognizable visual identity that will help to build brand recognition and loyalty in the community it operates in.


Color Theory and Your Acupuncture Practice


When choosing a color palette for a modern acupuncture clinic, it is important to consider the values and principles of your modern acupuncture practice in tandem with the ancient traditions of TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine).


Using that information as our guide, we created five REESHI-approved color palettes for modern acupuncture/TCM practices seeking to establish a trustworthy and calming brand:


Note: HEX codes are used as codified "tags" for specific colors; each color has a HEX code that can be used when creating a brand to ensure you are using the same exact shade/hue across your assets. Theres a whole math to HEX codes but we won't get into that here.


Nature-Inspired


This color palette includes shades of green, purple, crimson and brown. These colors represent nature and the environment, which are important principles in TCM and acupuncture. Green is associated with growth, health, and renewal, while purple is associated with calmness and serenity. Brown is associated with stability and grounding.


HEX (from top to bottom): dde1de, 9f8564, ca421f, 797cac, 514134


Warm and Inviting


This color palette includes shades of orange, yellow, and green. These colors represent warmth and hospitality, which are important values in a healthcare setting. Orange is associated with happiness and enthusiasm, while green represents healing & renewal. Yellow is associated with joy and optimism.


HEX: ded8c4, d6b92f, d1752e, a59d45, a06239 Earthy and Calming


This color palette includes shades of blue, brown, and green. These colors represent nature and the earth, which are important principles in TCM and acupuncture. Brown is associated with groundedness and strength, while blue represents trust and stability. Green is associated with growth and vitality. HEX: 5c6e7a, 796051, d59d2d, 838f7b, 1c231d


Cool and Soothing


This color palette includes shades of blue and brown. These colors represent calmness and relaxation, which are important for a holistic healing environment. Blue is associated with calmness and stability, while brown represents resilience and safety. HEX: 5f4026, b8977a, cec9c3, e6eaeb, d7dee4


Neutral and Modern


This color palette includes shades of gray and red. These colors represent sophistication and modernity, which are emblematic of a professional healthcare setting in 2023. Gray is associated with neutrality and balance, while red represents vitality and willpower. HEX: 502a12, 71321d, cfd0d2, 91730e, 4c4c18



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These five sample color palettes use color theory to create a compelling brands that are representative of some of the values and principles of a modern acupuncture clinic. By understanding the relationship between colors, the psychology of color, and the importance of consistency across different IRL and digital platforms, a TCM clinic can create a visual identity that is memorable, effective, and communicates the desired message to attract and retain new patients.


If you have any questions about choosing the right colors for your TCM brand or if you are seeking a branding partner, feel free to reach out to our amazing team here.


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