For Writers--Different words for “RED“

I am compliling a list for aspiring writers. Feel free to add to the list.(Some shades of red on this list are darker, lighter, or with different undertones, than your standard red…but then again red does have many tones and shades)

Keep in mind, don’t overuse these words. Use them sparingly for impact, otherwise you cheapen it with over use.

Check out my other lists here:

And More


Ruby                       Crimson                       Brick                       Garnet
Claret                      Rose                           Strawberry               Rust
Firetruck                  Siren                         Burgundy            Blush/ Flushed         
Cardinal                  Robin’s Breast             Fire/ Flame              Lava / magma
Rouge                     Volcano                     Mars (Mars Dust)       Poppy
Columbine               Salmon                       Cherry                      Cerise
Wine                        Yarrow                        Phoenix               Inflammed/ irritated
Blood (Blood clot)    Rubicund                     Coral                        Crab / Lobster
Sun                          Scarlet                        Maroon                    Chestnut
Carmine                   Vermillion                    Burnt                       Singed 
Raging                     Ruddy                         Blaze                        Fever
Scorched                  Ember                        Cinnabar                  Watermelon
Rose Quartz             Pepper                       Chili                          Grapefruit
Peony                       Artery                         Sunstone                  Carnelian
Red Beryl                 Fire Opal                     Raspberry                Tomato
Lady Bug                  Fox                             Rosaceous/ rosey        Apple
Rooster                     Rhubarb                      Pomegranate              Paprika
Dark Raspberry         Candycane                 Sunburn                     Pink Garnet
Cadmium                   Venetian Red              Terra Cotta                Autumn Red
Black Cherry              Heart Throb                Dragon Fruit              Salsa
Licorice                      Candy                         Valentine                   Ginger
Hollyhock                   Stop Sign                    Royal Red                  Lust
Mohogany                 Red Lacquer              Sex (metaphorically)     Passion
Cayenne                    Iron Oxide                   Raw Meat                    Bromine        Embarassed                Rash                  Sequioa/ Redwood            Raddish              Flushed/ Flustered      Beetroot                 Red ochre                      Fire Ant
Cranberry                 Kidney (bean and human organ)                Burnt Sienna
Ketchup                      Red/ Desert Clay          Blood Orange            Grapefruit
Annatto                        Lips                             Red Velvet Cake       Inferno
Merlot                          Pinot Noir                     Blister                    Bug Bite
Scab                            Acne                            Harvest Moon         Intestine
Dragon’s Breath           Furnace                      Hot Coals             Red Sandstone

Mind you, some colors are not appropriate for certain characteristics…for instance, you wouldn’t call a man’s angry face “valentine”….because “valentine implies something sweet.  Call his complexion “Fiery” or “Lava” to imply anger as well as the color.

Likewise, don’t call a soldier’s red uniform “Cherry”….because that seems too weak for a soldier…..Call it something like “Siren red” or “stop sign red”, “artery” or “blood” to imply authority, and maybe to describe their profession in a subtle way.

A woman in a red cocktail dress can be “salsa”, “rose”, candy red” or “the color of sex/ passion/ lust”, to imply what kind of sexy she is.

The underlying red of a baby’s new flesh can be “strawberry” or “blush” to imply something sweet and soft. Don’t call it something like “sunburn” because that just sounds painful for a baby.

Different colors imply different feelings. Use them well!