Meaning of “Colors” by Halsey

“Colors” is a song by recorded and released by American singer Halsey in which the primary topic is romance. As Halsey infers, the colors referred to in the song (i.e. blue, grey, purple) are symbolic of different stages in the relationship. Specifically, when she refers to her lover as being “blue”, it is meant to reflect a happier time in the union. When he becomes “grey”, it signifies him becoming dull, specifically in terms of his connection with her.

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Halsey's Colors at

This song has a general applicability, as Halsey states it’s about “being in a relationship”. However, it is clear from the lyrics, especially at the beginning of the track, that she is talking about someone in particular. And that person happens to be singer Matty Healy of the 1975.

What Halsey said about “Colors”

According to Halsey, the song is about being in a romantic relationship and sadly watching the vibrancy and liveliness of the person you are in this relationship with gradually leave them. They lose their vibrancy because they are falling victim to a behavior detrimental to their well-being.

She cited, among other things, drug addiction as one of the things that could qualify as a negative behavior gradually sapping the liveliness out of the person.

Halsey explains what "Colors" is about

It is noteworthy that Halsey and Matty Healy were in relationship in 2015. Around that same time, Healy was battling heroin addiction.

In all, this song is about no longer feeling romantic love for your lover. Why? Because they are indulging in a negative behavior that is changing the beautiful person they used to be. You don’t like the new person they have become. Owing to this, you fall out of love with them.

Facts about “Colors”

  • “Colors” was officially released on 9 February 2016 through Astralwerks.
  • It is off Halsey’s freshman album Badlands. It was released as the third single released from Badlands.
  • The song was written by Halsey and Dylan William. William also produced the track.
  • Blue, the color referred to most-prominently in the song, has a special meaning to its singer, Halsey. Speaking to Complex magazine, she said blue was her “creative” and “other-worldly” color.
  • This track, specifically the first verse, is referring to Matty Healy.
  • The music video for “Colors” was released on 25 February 2016. It was directed by award-winning director and photographer Tim Mattia.
  • Halsey’s love interest in the video is played by American actor and musician Tyler Posey. FYI Tyler gained international stardom starring as Scott McCall on the TV series Teen Wolf.

How many official singles did Badlands produce?

In addition to “Colors”, the album produced three other singles. They are: “New Americana”, “Ghost” and “Castle”.

Are there any samples on “Colors”?

No. Only two songs from Badlands contain samples. They are “New Americana” and “Hold Me Down”.

7 Responses

  1. :) says:

    When she says “everything is blue, his ‘pills’, his hands…- the pills refer to vi*gra LMAOO

  2. pls reply :( says:

    but what does she mean by ” you were red and you liked me cause I was blue
    you touched me and suddenly I was a lilac sky
    and you decided purple just wasn’t for you” ???

    • sunflowerbutter says:

      idk but i think its cause since he is blue and she is red, the color combo of the two turn into purple (lilac). He decided the color combination (them) was not for him. idk i might be wrong

    • Zack says:

      That’s what I was wondering! My first thought was that maybe she was temporarily pretending to be him, singing his part since this song is a solo. But I find that unlikely.

      Maybe he pulled away from her, too. He was red, a color that stands for many things, including violence, aggression, and danger. Maybe the red symbolized his negative behaviors. Maybe it was something like this:

      “You were red and you liked me cause I was blue.”
      He had many negative behaviors, and he liked Halsey because she did not have these negative behaviors. We can also see above that Halsey sees blue as ‘other-worldly,’ so maybe this is how he saw her, ethereal.

      “You touched me and suddenly I was a lilac sky,”
      As she was with him, she began to adopt more and more of his negative behaviors. It seems that her love interest in this song did not have much self-love, so when Halsey began to act like him, it was hard to love her. He ‘infected’ her with the very disease that he hoped she could cure him of… or he at least hoped she could distract him. But now, she is just becoming more and more like him, worse and worse.

      “and you decided purple just wasn’t for you.”
      She had become too much like him for him to love her. His feelings for her disappeared because as he watched her change, it felt more and more like looking into a mirror. And he hated himself, so how could he love someone who had become like him? I know it’s messed up, but maybe he felt betrayed even. He turned to her hoping she could be his cure, and instead, she was the one who changed. If nothing else, we can see that he definitely felt disappointed with this.

      Smith, K. (2019). Color symbolism & meaning of red. Sensational Color.

  3. Lensito says:

    I think it she end up falling in love with another person . In the video shows she is into her boyfriend or “dude” dad..

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