Color Palette

Colors are the heart of brand identity. For the University of Cincinnati, red and black are our primary colors, serving as the core of our brand's visual identity. They should take the lead in both digital and print designs. These colors are the essence of our brand, and using them consistently helps maintain our strong and recognizable identity.

Primary Colors

The University of Cincinnati's primary color palette is built upon the dynamic duo of red and black. These colors are the lifeblood of our brand, making them the first choice for any digital or print design. We encourage you to embrace their boldness and vibrancy, allowing them to dominate your creative work. Remember, these primary colors should always take precedence over any secondary or expanded color choices, ensuring a consistent and powerful representation of the UC brand.

UC Red

PMS 186C
RGB: 224.1.34
HSB: 350.92.80
Hex: #e00122

UC Black

100% Black
RGB: 0.0.0
HSB: 0.0.0
Hex: #000000


0% Black
RGB: 255.255.255
HSB: 0.0.100
Hex: #ffffff

Secondary Colors

In addition to our bold primary colors, we introduce two secondary colors: UC Dark Red and Grey. These colors play vital roles in our brand's visual identity. UC Dark Red can be found accenting websites, often used in subheaders or as a dynamic hover state when paired with UC Primary Red in digital formats. Grey, on the other hand, serves as a versatile background color, providing a necessary contrast to our primary red and black hues, all while maintaining our accessibility standards. These secondary colors enhance the depth and diversity of our brand's visual language.

UC Dark Red

Hex: #b8011c
RGB: (184,1,28)


Hex: #f3f3f3
RGB: (243,243,243)

Expanded Color Palette

Our brand's color palette goes beyond the basics with a selection of extended colors, each with its unique character. These colors, including Calhoun Maroon, Steger Silver, Main Street Mist, Bearcats Black, Gettler Gold, and Tangeman Tan, are primarily designed for digital and print data visualization. However, it's important to note that they should not be integrated into master slides or themes in digital formats.

Colors from the Expanded color palette may not be used as a text color. These extended colors are like the spices in a well-balanced dish – they should be used sparingly to add tasteful accents, whether it's in data visualization or to provide a touch of flair. They are the supporting cast, never stealing the spotlight from our primary red and black hues. Remember, accessible color combinations are precise, so use these extended colors wisely to maintain the integrity of our brand's identity.

Calhoun Maroon

Hex: #890519
RGB: 137, 5, 25
CMYK: 28, 100, 98, 32

Steger Silver

Hex: #a7a5aa
RGB: 167, 165, 170
CMYK: 37, 31, 27, 0

Main Street Mist

Hex: #e0dfe3
RGB: 224, 223, 227
CMYK: 11, 9, 6, 0

Bearcats Black

Hex: #333333
RGB:51, 51, 51
CMYK: 69, 63, 62, 58

Gettler Gold

Hex: #d1b179
RGB:209, 177, 121
CMYK: 19, 28, 60, 0

Tangeman Tan

Hex: #eadbc1
RGB: 234, 219, 193
CMYK: 8, 11, 24, 0


Our brand's primary colors, red and black, have been meticulously selected to meet accessibility color guidelines. As such, it's crucial to adhere to their intended use. Never use red on black or black on red, as these combinations fail to meet the necessary color contrast requirements.

Using red on black or black on red not only compromises the legibility of your content but also goes against the principles of accessibility, potentially excluding individuals with visual impairments. These colors have been purposefully chosen to strike the right balance, ensuring that our brand is not only visually appealing but also inclusive for all. Please refrain from making any adjustments to these color combinations, as they are fundamental to maintaining our commitment to accessibility and brand integrity.

Primary Color Combinations

Primary color combinations for the University of Cincinnati brand
Primary Color Background Accessible Text Color Don't Use
White (#FFFFFF) Black (#000000, #333333*) 
Red (#e00122)
Black (#000000, #333333) White (#ffffff) Red (#e00122)
Red (#e00122) White (#ffffff) Black (#000000, #333333) 

Expanded Color Combinations

Expanded palette color combinations for the University of Cincinnati brand
Expanded Color Background Accessible Text Color Don't Use
Calhoun Maroon (#890519) White (#ffffff) Black (#000000) 
Red (#e00122)
Steger Silver (#a7a5aa) Black (#000000)  White (#ffffff) 
Red (#e00122)
Main Street Mist (#e0dfe3) Black (#000000, #333333) White (#ffffff) 
Red (#e00122)
Bearcats Black (#333333) White (#ffffff) Black (#000000) 
Red (#e00122)
Gettler Gold (#d1b179) Black (#000000) White (#ffffff) 
Red (#e00122)
Tangeman Tan (#eadbc1) Black (#000000, #333333)  White (#ffffff) 
Red (#e00122)

Note: As a rule, we use Bearcats black as a primary color for text on a white field for digital and web. This is to reduce eye strain for our visitors, as it is a web best practice to avoid using pure black on pure white for copy.