Why Have Adult Coloring Books Become So Popular?

Recently a couple of coloring books for grown-ups became the top best-selling books on Amazon. (Yikes!) In addition, for quite a while five of the top ten best-sellers in Britain were adult coloring books.

And it wasn’t so long ago when adults were ashamed to admit they kind of liked coloring their children’s coloring books. It was considered childish and somewhat infantile. Researchers even claim that adult coloring books owe their rising popularity to the virtual anonymity of their purchasers – adults were actually too embarrassed to buy “such” books from regular real-life bookstores. It was thought to be socially unacceptable.

So what’s all that fuss about now? Why is coloring suddenly so trendy?

Well, apparently:

It gives you permission to feel like a child again.

Adult coloring books are like the new kid on the block – they bring about an air of mystery and intrigue, promising new, unknown and undiscovered adventures. More and more grown-ups are into this and it’s no coincidence. They can now “legally” get childish and no one would blame them. Coloring’s proven to evoke your inner child who simply wants to play and feel good. No more, no less.

It gives you the unique chance to escape from reality

“Escapism” is defined as “entertainment or recreation, as an “escape”… from the perceived unpleasant, boring, arduous, scary, or banal aspects of daily life.” In other words – coloring helps you cope with the otherwise stressful/awfully boring routine or with even depression. The magical world of multiple shapes and colors takes to a far nicer place, where you could enjoy simple pleasures.

It’s fun

Well, it is fun.

It sets your inner muse free

You can’t paint? Well, you can always color! Many people (including me) have the same problem – they’re full of creative energy but can’t scribble a doodle. And it does make me feel bad sometimes, when I feel the need to let it all out but don’t really know how. Blank pages make me feel even worse.

Then again, all those beautiful henna patterns, mandalas or even Ryan Gosling (oh, yes, there is such a book) pop up all of a sudden and I feel my inner color-Goddess rejoice.

It’s actually healthy

Mental health is often neglected but usually way more important than physical wellbeing. And coloring has a soothing effect both on body and soul. It helps you relax and free yourself from the clutches of stress. There are even specially designed coloring books to help you fall asleep (without the usual glass of red wine, too!)

It helps you socialize

Throw a coloring book party, inviting your childhood best friends! Everyone gets a copy and loosens their imagination over a cup of coffee or wine. You could talk about the good old times or simply discuss your favorite TV show. You could actually do all that while watching your favorite TV show! Whoa, talk about multitasking!

It gives you a reality check

First and foremost, it allows you to touch paper. And paper, as it turns out, is missing more and more from our daily lives, being replaced with all kinds of tech gadgets. You can also feel the pen you’re coloring with, sense its texture, you can smudge and smear with your own fingers. And there’s no “undo” button.

It’s cheap

Adult coloring books don’t cost much. They come in all kinds of sizes and prices, so they fit everyone’s needs (and pockets). Besides, one coloring book, if colored diligently, could last for at least a month. After all, it is way cheaper than a psychotherapy.

It’s all about you

It’s your style, your colors, your imagination – you, you and you again. Coloring books take you on a romantic date… with you.

So, pour some wine. Get into something comfy. Feel yourself.

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