I have to create two dark themes for a single UI design. What factors or reasons should I base my color choices on? I feel like there is more that comes into play than just the aesthetic. Thanks in advance for a direction any of you can provide.

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Here are several considerations for selecting color in a UI Design. These are not in any order of importance.

Brand Recognition

A UI should reflect the brand personality, including the colors. Brand colors should be used regularly and throughout the UI to reiterate to the end user that this product or service is provided by company X.

Cultural Considerations

There are cultural considerations to be made. In the western world, black is often associated with death while in the eastern world white is often associated with death. Here is a list of cultural color associations around the world.

Besides national cultures, color can be associated with certain cultural phenomenon or groups. For example, pink is often associated with breast cancer awareness. Here is a list of the awareness ribbons including their color.

Communicating Information

Certain colors have been used culturally to communicate specific information to users in a UI. Green is often associated with good or success while red is commonly associated with failure or danger.

These color associations for communicating status are contextually specific to certain cultures.


To allow access for individuals with color vision deficiencies, the WCAG requires a minimum level of contrast between the background and foreground content.

It is also a requirement that certain colors commonly associated with color blindness are not used together. Red-green color blindness and blue-yellow color blindness are the most common forms. WCAG Use of Color

Emotional Impact

Color Psychology is the study of color's effect on individuals' moods, thoughts, and behaviors. Color is capable of impacting an individual's emotions, influencing their mood. Blue is often seen as a calming color, while purple is a color that sparks creativity; yet there is some inconsistency from individual to individual on how color affects mood.

As you can see, there are several aspects to consider with color selection. It is best to do your due diligence and do user research to understand which colors will lead to the desirable outcome for your UI.

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