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The Effect of Color Design on Fragrance Association

Yu-Jin Kim

In order to effectively communicate the fragrances of commercial perfumes to consumers, it is important to apply congruent colors to their bottles and packaging. This research investigated the cross-modal associations between colors and fragrances. Through analyzing bottle colors of more than 200 popular perfumes in the market, distinguishable color design patterns were revealed in accordance with their fragrance types. In the color-fragrance matching experiment conducted in a blind setting, three test perfumes had characteristic hues. Their associated hues were similar with the real colors of the perfumes. There were significant variations in tone across fragrance notes, i.e. the top notes, middle notes, and base notes. These results support the existence of robust cross-modal associations between particular colors and fragrances in commercial perfumery by extending the use of color-odor matching task to a test population of Korean participants.


Color, Fragrance, Commercial Perfume, Cross-modal Association