What Are 15 Shades of Blue?

By Keith Evans
Blue can describe a large number of shades and hues.

The human eye contains rods and cones sensitive to red, green and blue tints. Because the eye is so sensitive to these specific hues, primary colors like blue can fall into a vast collection of shades and hues.

Midnight and Navy

One of the darkest blues, midnight blue takes its name from its almost black color. The midnight blue color is somewhat reminiscent of a night sky and somewhat darker than the darkest shade of navy blue. Navy blue is slightly lighter than midnight blue but still among the darkest of blue hues. The name of navy blue dates back to a 1745 color choice by King George II of England and has served as the color of naval uniforms since, according to the official history of the U.S. Navy.

Cornflower and Slate Blue

A decidedly medium blue, cornflower is reminiscent of a clear summer sky. The color falls in the middle of many color charts and carries the hexadecimal color code 6495ed. The color of pure, un-dyed slate, slate almost resembles a light purple rather than a true blue. Slate blue can fall into a number of variations that include light slate and medium slate, according to Taylored Marketing.

Royal Blue

Royal blue presents a deep, rich hue popular with many royal families throughout history. A popular color due to its rich appearance, royal blue carries the hexadecimal color code 4169e1.

Sky Blue

A few shades lighter than cornflower blue, this color evokes memories of a cloudless spring or late autumn sky. Taylored Marketing points out that sky blue is available in several variants that include deep sky and light sky.

Steel Blue

Steel blue appears as a mix between a blue and a grey and may take its name from its grayish undertones. The hexadecimal color code for steel blue is 4682b4.

Electric Blue

A color so widely recognized that it appears in at least one pop music song, electric blue is a vivid shade intended to resemble the color of lightning or an arc of electricity.

Cobalt Blue

Cobalt blue is also a vivid hue of medium blue but is somewhat more diffused. The color takes its name from the natural shade of cobalt.

Other Blues

Delft is somewhat more diffused than cobalt. Color experts at Eternal Silk indicate that delft blue can be further divided into shades like delft blue medium, delft medium dark and light delft. Copenhagen blue is somewhat darker than delft blue but equally diffused with shades of white and grey; this hue is available in light and dark shades. The color of the ocean, ocean blue resembles the bluish green mix found in large bodies of water. Ocean blue is a popular color with several available shades like dark, medium and light. Indigo is a deep and dark shade of blue that approaches the purple spectrum. Many automotive manufacturers use this shade for its high visibility in instrumentation. Blueberry carries the vivid, deep color of the wild berries. This color can fall into several shades that resemble the berry’s colors as it matures. Finally, cyan is a vivid light blue shade that blends easily with other colors to create new shades.

About the Author

Keith Evans has been writing professionally since 1994 and now works from his office outside of Orlando. He has written for various print and online publications and wrote the book, "Appearances: The Art of Class." Evans holds a Bachelor of Arts in organizational communication from Rollins College and is pursuing a Master of Business Administration in strategic leadership from Andrew Jackson University.