The Joys of Adult Colouring

Do you colour? In recent years, colouring books have undergone a rebirth. No longer the mainstay of the children’s sections in bookshops. Colouring books these days appeal to a huge and dynamic range of adults who turn to colouring for a variety of reasons.

Therapists, psychologists and a range of scientists have attempted to explain and rationalise the great rise in the popularity of adult colouring, however, they don’t all seem to be able to agree on any consistent factors.

We think that there are some quite simple reasons for adult colouring to become so popular.

A Reminder of Childhood

Colouring speaks to an earlier time in our lives when things were simple, and time was abundant. Remember when you first learnt to colour in? Chances are you were about 4, maybe younger, and every stroke of colour on paper was an achievement. Colouring between the lines – Wow! That was for experts.

It’s quite easy to form that correlation of how colouring is a reminder of childhood and perhaps that in itself is what is comforting about it. The time taken to do something seemingly pointless and simple, is a world away from an adult’s life of necessary results, achievement and outcomes.

Alice in Wonderland Colouring Book
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Mindfulness practise

The repetitive and almost boring exercise of colouring is in many ways reminiscent of a method in to mindfulness practise. Focusing on a repetitive exercise to the point when the mind is still and quiet, colouring offers a practical aspect to mindfulness and meditative practise.

Focus and concentration

The generally detailed designs within a large overall picture within the adult colouring books require both focus and concentration to complete. Decisions on colour selection and combination, options to shade and graduate colours  need a combination of logic and creativity.


Akin to all projects, the completion of any one of these thoroughly detailed and demanding  pictures require patience, perseverance and determination. It is no small wonder then that there often is a heart-warming sense of success and accomplishment upon the completing of one of these detailed pictures.

We think that the rebirth of colouring for adults is certainly a good thing, if nothing more than to bring more colour and beauty in to this world of ours. If you do colour, do share with us, in the comments below, how it makes you feel and why you do it.

Also check out our recommended list of Best Adult Colouring Book Series.