What Are The Best Colors For Your Resume?

by | Resumes & LinkedIn

“What’s the best color for my resume?” There are a lot of moving pieces in a modern-day job search, and one of them is style. While deciding the best color to use on your resume may not be at the top of your to-do list, it does warrant attention.

Is It Unprofessional To Have Color In Your Resume?

No, adding color to your resume is not unprofessional. In fact, strategically adding the right colors to your resume can draw the reader’s eye to the most important content on your document and increase your chances of securing an interview.

You want to choose a color that grabs the attention of recruiters and hiring managers while not detracting from the content of your resume.

So, what are the best colors for your resume? How do you choose the most effective resume color?

5 Best Colors To Use On Your Resume

Blue, green, purple, red, and gray are five of the best colors besides black to consider using on your resume. Let’s dive into the strategy for using each of these colors on your resume further:

1. Blue

As a career coach, blue is the color I most often recommend to job seekers. One of the reasons companies like Meta, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Salesforce use blue in their logos is because it exudes trust, and besides, people simply love the color. You can experiment with different shades of blue (and teal) to find the best one for you.

2. Green

Green is another color I frequently recommend job seekers use on their resumes. While green can be used by anyone, I am particularly fond of green if you are targeting finance, business development, sales, or other revenue-related roles. Try experimenting with different shades of green to find the one that communicates the right message.

3. Purple

Job seekers are sometimes surprised when I recommend purple for their resumes, yet when used strategically, purple can help you stand out in a saturated job market. I most often advise using purple if you are targeting a role that requires a bit more creativity or a company that pushes for innovation. Importantly, I recommend using a more subtle shade of purple, such as eggplant or plum, rather than royal purple.

4. Red

Red can be a warm, bold, and fun color to include on your resume, but you want to be careful about using too much, as it can make you come off as aggressive. A strategic splash here and there can be a powerful touch. Red will help you quickly grab the reader’s attention and draw their eyes to important information, such as relevant companies or important keywords.

5. Gray

While determining whether gray is technically a color is outside my Zone of Genius, what I can advise is using it strategically on your resume. It’s great for subtly calling attention to specific areas of your work history, such as your most impressive career accomplishments or testimonials. Additionally, grey can be used alone or in addition to one of the previously mentioned colors.

What Is The Best Color For A Resume?

Let’s summarize. A few of the best colors to use on your resume or CV are blue, green, purple, red, and gray. Of course, you can use other colors, but these are some of the best accent colors to use on your resume to highlight important details and keywords without distracting the reader.

Best Colors for Resume

How To Choose The Best Color For Your Resume

Now that we have discussed a few color options, it is time to select which one to use on your resume. Remember: Your goal here is to find a color that grabs the recruiter’s attention while also showcasing your personality. At the same time, you do not want the color to detract from the content of your resume. In other words, use it sparingly.

Note: Applicant tracking systems (ATS) cannot “read” colors on your resume. Your primary reason for including color is for the human who views it.

Finally, keep in mind that enhancing your resume is a single step in the overall job search process. Trust your intuition and select a color that resonates with you. You’ve got this!

About Dr. Kyle Elliott

About Dr. Kyle Elliott

Dr. Kyle Elliott is the founder and career coach behind CaffeinatedKyle.com. His expertise is in Silicon Valley and high-tech. As a result of working with Dr. Elliott, senior managers and executives have landed jobs at Meta, Amazon, Google, and nearly every other tech giant you can imagine.

A trusted career expert, Dr. Elliott’s words have been featured on Business Insider, CNBC, CNN, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, Fortune, Harvard Business Review, and The New York Times, among dozens of other leading publications. He has been recognized as a Best Career & Interview Coach, Best Resume Writer for Silicon Valley/Tech Managers & Executives, and LinkedIn Top Voice (the platform’s highest honor).



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