Know the Basics: What Are the Italian Colors?

Ellison Clapton7 min
Creado: Nov 15, 2023Última actualización: Mar 19, 2024
Colors in Italian

We don’t usually notice how often we describe everything happening around us. In this case, colors are essential to language learning, although it’s not so evident. Imagine choosing something in an Italian shop; the seller will possibly understand you better if you clearly explain what you need. Let’s start learning colors in Italian right now! 

Many people are unfamiliar with the variety of shades, and azure and turquoise look the same. However, everyone can distinguish red from green and blue from yellow. How do you say all these in a foreign language? An Italian color guide will be helpful for every learner, as it includes the basic terminology they will implement in daily communication.

The Noble Purple in Italian

In Italian, the color of royalty, power, and nobility is called “porpora” [pˈorpora]. You can also meet the word “viola,” [vjˈɔla] which is translated as “violet.” Purple has multiple shades, and Italians are good at distinguishing them. Take a look at some options: 

  • lavanda [lavˈanda] – lavender;
  • prugna [prˈuɲɲa] – plum;
  • lilla [lˈilla] – lilac;
  • indaco [ˈindako] – indigo;
  • malva [mˈalva] – mauve.

Memorizing different shades of purple will help you better describe the surrounding things. Moreover, it’s a chance to show your deep knowledge of the Italian language and impress others with a rich vocabulary.

Orange: The Color of Warmth and Fun

We see this color every day, whether it’s autumn with falling leaves or the need to choose the most delicious fruits. Knowing how to say “orange” is essential, so remember it’s translated as “arancione” [aɾant͡ʃˈone] in Italian. Unsurprisingly, the color also has numerous tones: 

  • ambra [ˈambra] – amber;
  • bronzo [brˈond͡zo] – bronze;
  • rosso aragosta [rˈos͡so aɾaɡˈɔsta] – burnt orange.

Many words in Italian are similar to their English analogs, which usually accelerates the learning process. However, the two languages are still from different groups, so mastering the second one will take time and effort.

The Color of Sky: Blue in Italian

Blue is among the most beautiful colors; many people cannot imagine their life without it. Just imagine looking at the clear “cielo blu” [t͡ʃˈɛlo blˈu] (blue sky) and dreaming. However, there are many other objects in this color. Therefore, learning shades of blue in the Italian language will be beneficial: 

  • turchese [tʊrkˈeze] – turquoise;
  • blu marino [blˈu marˈino] – navy blue;
  • celeste [t͡ʃelˈɛste] – baby blue;
  • blu notte [blˈu nˈɔtːe] – midnight blue.

You can describe everything around you and make a great impression on Italian people. Would you like to talk about the inspiring nature or the beauty of a bustling metropolis at midnight? Diversify your speech with multiple tones of blue.

Passionate Red: The Brightest Color in Italian

Expressing passion, love, and emotions seems impossible without mentioning the red color. For instance, young men flirting with the girls they like most often choose roses of this shade to express their feelings. “Rosso” [rˈos͡so] means “red” in Italian; the word is easy to memorize. Other colors that might be helpful for language learners include the following: 

  • rosso sangue [rˈos͡so sˈaŋɡwe] – blood-red;
  • granata [ɡranˈata] – maroon;
  • rosso mattone [rˈos͡so matːˈone] – brick red.

Learning colors will significantly expand your horizons, so memorize as many tones as possible. Remember that besides love and passion, red symbolizes blood from the Wars of Italian Independence and Unification, which is why it can be seen on the country’s flag. 

The Symbol of Joy and Happiness: Yellow in Italian

Which color would you choose when you need something to cheer you up? Many people would pick yellow, the color of the sun and joy. Take a look at the main terms you might need: 

  • giallo [d͡ʒˈallo] – yellow;
  • canarino [kanarˈino] – canary;
  • oro [ˈɔro] – golden;
  • giallo chiaro [d͡ʒˈallo kjˈaro] – light yellow.

Sometimes shades are pretty similar but still have different names. Learn as many as possible to develop your Italian skills. Now, you can already describe the sunshine, autumn leaves, multiple fruits, and other things in yellow.

Brown Shades in Italian Colors List

“Marrone” [marɾˈone] describes the brown color in the Italian language. Have you heard this word before? However, it also has multiple tones, which you would possibly like to memorize and use when speaking. So, what are the most common color names in Italian when speaking of shades of brown?

  • mandorla [mˈandorla] – almond;
  • cioccolato [t͡ʃokːolˈatːo] – chocolate;
  • caffè [kaffˈɛ] – coffee;
  • marrone scuro [marɾˈone skˈuro] – cedar.

Learn the above words and their pronunciation, and try to implement them in your daily speech. Practicing Italian daily is the best idea for learners who want to master the language. You can even read aloud and check yourself, significantly strengthening your speaking skills.

Pink in Italian: Color of Femininity

Pink, in line with red, is the color of love in Italian-speaking countries. Moreover, it’s usually used to describe femininity, so it’s not surprising many women like it. “Rosa” [rˈɔza] is the Italian word for the pink color, but there are other shades you should consider:

  • pesca [pˈɛska] – peach;
  • magenta [mad͡ʒˈɛnta] – magenta;
  • rosa chiaro [rˈɔza kjˈaro] – blush;
  • fucsia [fˈuksia] – hot pink. 

You can talk about flowers and many other beautiful things in Italian. There are multiple shades of pink, and each of them is unique and fantastic. Implement the above terms in your vocabulary, and you will impress other people with such well-developed speaking skills.


Green: Explore the Colors of Nature

Green in Italian is among the most important colors, which can be seen on the country’s flag. This word is translated as “verde” [vˈerde]. Now, you can describe the beautiful nature and admire the Italian landscapes. Other alternatives include: 

  • verde acqua [vˈerde ˈakːwa] – seafoam;
  • smeraldo [zmerˈaldo] – emerald;
  • menta [mˈenta] – mint. 

It’s impossible to speak the language and use the word “green” zero times in your speech. Therefore, take some time to memorize the shades of this color in Italian and come closer to the desired level of fluency.

Royal Classics: Black in Italian

This was initially the color of the devil, fear, and mystery, but even these symbols don’t make people love black shades less. “Nero” [nˈero] is the classic; many cannot imagine their wardrobe without this tone, while others even renovate an apartment in this color. Look at other words that will be helpful when discovering the shades of black: 

  • inchiostro [inkjˈɔstro] – ink;
  • carbone [karbˈone] – charcoal;
  • onice [ˈɔnit͡ʃe] – onyx.

Black is the eternal classic that is always in trend. Learn the above words and replenish your vocabulary with varied color names in Italian. 

Describing Light: White in Italian

The symbol of purity and faith is also on the country’s flag. Can you imagine our world without “bianco” [bjˈanko] color? Remember that this word is changed according to the context (“bianca” [bjˈanka] is used when talking about females). It’s not the only definition of white, so grab some more ideas: 

  • avorio [avˈɔrio] – ivory;
  • cocco [kˈɔkːo] – coconut;
  • perla [pˈɛrla] – pearl;
  • alabastro [alabˈastro] – alabaster. 

These are only some color shades widely used to describe different colors in Italian. And there are so many varied tones available. They all have their names, and exploring them when mastering a new language is exciting.

What Are Italian Colors: Let’s Learn All with Promova

Would you like to learn even more colors and other essential Italian vocabulary? Some assistance from experienced tutors is an excellent idea for everyone mastering the language. The Promova platform offers a well-thought-out guided course to help you strengthen your knowledge and reach the desired fluency level. We offer a web version adapted for all devices and a convenient app that you can download with a few clicks. 

You can join Promova for free or get a Premium subscription, offering even more benefits to learners. Dozens of new words daily, essential topics, and exciting quizzes are available for everyone mastering Italian. We won’t say it would be easy, as learning a new language is never too simple. However, with daily practice and dedication, you will reach fluency in the desired language.


Knowing colors will never be excessive for those mastering the Italian language. Such words can enrich your speech and make the people around you understand you better. This topic is as essential as knowing how to greet people or telling them what time it is now. Do you notice how often you use color names daily? It immediately becomes evident when you don’t know how to describe the gelato you want or the T-shirt you plan to buy.


Which additional resources should I use to master Italian faster?

Multiple manuals and books are now available online, which is why self-learning is so widespread. Students can choose from different materials, but online dictionaries are the only source that is critical for everyone. Therefore, it’s recommended to use Collins Dictionary and WordReference to understand the language better. Translate every new word you see and memorize it to strengthen your speaking and writing skills.

What do the colors of the Italian flag symbolize?

It’s exciting that people make their symbols, and green means completely different things in varied countries. The shade shows beautiful landscapes and scenery for Italians, highlighting the basic human rights to freedom. At the same time, red symbolizes blood in the wars for the country’s independence. White is for the snowy Alps and faith in the positive future.

What are the main tips for reaching the desired level of fluency in Italian?

Proficient tutors note that taking regular lessons is the crucial point students must stick to when mastering the language. Other tips include practicing and speaking out loud as soon as possible. Dipping in the language environment is the best solution, but you can even talk to yourself in front of the mirror.

Why listen to songs and podcasts to strengthen your Italian skills?

This approach allows learners to dip into the language atmosphere and hear natives speaking or singing. It improves the understanding of Italian and will enable students to memorize new words and expressions. You can also repeat after the speaker to practice your pronunciation.


Kaitlin MathewsNov 28th, 2023
I enjoyed reading this article immensely.