7 Best Colors For YouTube Thumbnails (With Examples)

Article last updated on:
April 21, 2024

You’re probably here because you:

Fear not, this guide’s your friend.

7 Most Attractive Colors for Thumbnails

These are the best most attractive colors to use in YouTube thumbnails: red, orange, yellow, light green, and light purple.

Let us explain the theory.

1. Red → Curiosity

Red, orange, and yellow are attention grabbers.

Example of a Red YouTube Thumbnail
Funny enough, the thumbnail isn’t blue – Bluetooth!

Red is associated with urgency, while yellow is the most visible color.

Use them strategically to make your thumbnail stand out in a crowded feed.

2. Blue → Trust

Blue conveys calmness and professionalism.

Example of a Blue-dominant YouTube Thumbnail
  • It works well as a base color or to create contrast with other tones.
  • For a tech review video, for instance, a blue background with bold white text can be very effective.

3. Green → Vibrancy

Green is easy on the eyes and signifies growth or nature.

Example of a Green-dominant YouTube Thumbnail

It’s a good choice for tutorials, health tips, or anything outdoorsy.

4. Purple → Luxury

Lighter purples add a touch of luxury or creativity. Purple has always been a royal color, which goes well with the luxurious touch.

Example of a Purple-dominant YouTube Thumbnail

They can be particularly interesting for gaming or beauty content.

5. Complementary Colors

These are opposites on the color wheel, like blue and orange or yellow and purple. They create high contrast, making your thumbnail pop.

Example of YouTube Thumbnail with complementary colors

Examples include the following:

  • Traditional RYB model (Red, Yellow, Blue): This model is often used in art and design education. In this model, complementary colors are direct opposites on the color wheel:
    • Red and Green
    • Yellow and Purple
    • Blue and Orange
  • Modern RGB model (Red, Green, Blue): This model is based on how light creates color. Complementary colors here combine to create white light:
    • Red and Cyan (a blue-green)
    • Green and Magenta (a pinkish purple)
    • Blue and Yellow

6. Analogue Colors

These are neighbors on the color wheel, creating a pleasing and harmonious look.

Example of YouTube Thumbnail with analogue colors

For a calming and trustworthy vibe, try blue and green together.


1. What color for the background?

A clean white or dark background works well as it makes other colors pop and ensures the main content stands out.

Check it out:

Colorful YouTube Video Thumbnail

So simple, yet so many views!

2. What colors attract viewers on YouTube?

Bright, contrasting colors like red, orange, and yellow tend to grab viewers’ attention on YouTube.

These vibrant shades can make thumbnails stand out and are often associated with energy and excitement.

Thank you for reading this,

About the author

David is the head of the editing team at ThumbnailTest. With his help, the editorial team is able to provide you with the best free guides related to YouTube thumbnails and A/B testing.