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I'm in the process of creating my brand colours and I want to achieve a bright Cyan but any bright colours just appear dull in CMYK.

There are 3 big brands I know of that use very bright colours in their branding and I'm wondering how this can be acheived as these colours do not exist in CMYK.

The 3 brands are: TheFork , Nextdoor , and Deliveroo.

Below are some images of their branding so you can see the kind of colour brightness I am looking to reflect in my branding but the bright green and teal just comes out dull and grey when you try to achieve it in CMYK.

Just wondering how these brands are able to apply this colours to printed marketing materials?

Bright brand colours

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    the top one is a video screen. not cmyk; the banner at the bottom is not cmyk, but 2 special inks; the middle one may be cmyk, but it was probably boosted after the photo was taken, so not cmyk
    – Yorik
    Nov 3, 2023 at 15:01
  • In CMYK printing the most vivid possible cyan is 100%C, 0%M, 0%Y, 0%K. The most vivid blue or green Inks are probably in Pantone's Neon (or fluorescent) range of Solid colour inks, which are not CMYK.
    – Billy Kerr
    Nov 3, 2023 at 23:48

2 Answers 2

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By printing those saturated brand colors as spot colors, not in CMYK.

This is one of the reasons why spot colors are still very common in packaging: many high saturation brand colors are just outside of CMYK gamut.

Note that if you’re judging CMYK colors on your monitor, then you are limited both by CMYK and by your monitor. It could look dull because of print limitations (eg. Blues and greens) or because the screen can’t do justice to printed result (eg. Pure cyan).

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If you need Cyan in CMYK, you need to make sure it is pure Cyan.

But you probably need to use spot inks. In Pantone numbers, fluorescent cyan is P801C.

For a turquoise color, you could mix it with fluorescent green 802C but you need to experiment.

You can probably change the normal CMY inks in offset print to P801C, P806C, and P803C and use a low black color profile. It would be interesting.


But some inkjet systems have brighter prints than others, so you need to make tests to see the best combination of values, probably using RGB files. It depends on the specific printer.

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