What Does Red Symbolize In Chinese New Year

What Does Red Symbolize In Chinese New Year


What Does Red Symbolize In Chinese New Year: The Chinese New Year holds immense cultural significance in China and resonates with neighboring nations and Asian communities worldwide.

In 2023, the Chinese New Year started on January 22. It was the start of the 16-day Spring Festival and the Chinese New Year. During this happy season, there are lots of beloved traditions and fun things to do. The color red is used to decorate everything festively.

In Chinese culture, colors have deep meanings that come from ideas that have been passed down for thousands of years. Because these colors are linked to stories, they make us think of our environment and our cultural past.

One of these very important symbolic colors is red, which stands for happiness and good luck. This color is perfect for parties and celebrations. It’s used not only for the Lunar New Year but also for weddings and other important events, representing joy and tradition.

What Does Red Symbolize In Chinese New Year

Why the colour red is considered lucky for Chinese New Year?

In Chinese folklore, on the last night before the new year, a scary creature called Nian would appear and cause a lot of damage to farms, animals, and people living in the area. To make Nian happy and make sure they were safe, the locals put food offerings at their front doors to ward off this mythical threat.

The story goes that one terrible night, a child dressed in red scared the beast away from Nian. As a result, people have hung couplet-adorned spring papers and red lanterns to keep Nian away for another year.

People say “Gong Xi Fa Cai,” which means “Congratulations,” to ward off the legendary creature on New Year’s Eve. Every year, the Nian dance, which is also called the “lion dance,” is performed to get rid of any more threats that the mythical animal might face.

What does the colour symbolise?

In Chinese society, three colors—red, yellow, and green—are linked to wealth. According to the Chinese Five Elements Theory, red stands for “fire,” yellow for “earth,” and green or blue for “wood.” Also, white represents “metal,” and black represents “water.”

Red is an important color because it is the traditional color of the Han, which is China’s main ethnic group. It represents luck, celebration, wealth, and good fortune. In China, people wear red during the Chinese New Year to ward off bad spirits and bring good luck.

Red lanterns, flags, and paper cutouts are used to decorate homes and businesses, along with red clothing. It’s common to wish older adults and children health and wealth by giving them red envelopes full of cash.

Choosing clothes with red colour

People wear red during the Lunar New Year because it is thought to protect them from evil forces and bring them wealth. It is interesting to learn that many people celebrate the new year by wearing nothing but red.

The bright color red stands for desire, love, energy, and movement. You can bring harmony and wealth into your life by mixing this color with other lucky colors in your clothing and home decor.

Also, the color red is thought to make people more romantic, which makes it even more important during this holiday season.

What is colour symbolism (colour in culture)?

It is very interesting to look at how different countries use color to represent different things. This meaning permeates every part of life, from the clothes people wear to their daily routines, food practices, and elaborate ceremonies.

Different cultures have different ways of knowing colors because each color has a different meaning in each culture. Symbolic meanings have usually been passed down through many generations, sometimes for hundreds or even thousands of years, with the original meaning becoming more and more like myth.

The fact that we give colors meanings or symbols shows how naturally we want to make sense of the world around us. Usually, this urge comes from religious beliefs, cultural norms, or historical ties.

For example, in China, the color red has come to mean wealth, luck, and good fortune, which is a result of hundreds of years of cultural beliefs and norms.

5 Chinese Traditions Involving the Colour Red


Red is often used in traditional Chinese wedding decorations, and the girl wears a beautiful, long red dress. This choice of color isn’t made by chance; it comes from the idea that red can keep evil away. As a result, red is linked to happiness, health, pregnancy, and good luck in the marriage.


A common practice in traditional Chinese culture is to wear new red clothes to festivals and other celebrations. This color is thought to represent youth, vitality, and excitement. It’s a metaphor for letting go of the past and embracing the future to put on new clothes. During these important events, red and its variations, like pink, are especially liked.

For the Chinese New Year, designs in red

During the Chinese New Year, red lanterns and banners are put in windows and doors. This habit comes from the idea that the color red scares away the legendary nián shàu beast, which attacked people in prehistoric times until it saw a child dressed in red and ran away.

Gifts in red boxes for Chinese New Year

As a sign of luck and wealth, red envelopes, or “压祟钱 (yā suì qián),” are often given to children during Chinese New Year. Adults often put cash in these boxes and give them to kids, family, and friends as a way to wish them a happy new year.

New Year with red eggs

It’s also common to give Chinese red eggs to guests on happy occasions, like the birth of a child or the first month of the new year. These red-dyed, hard-boiled eggs stand for happiness and the cycle of life and death. They also represent dreams for wealth and health among family and friends.

What Does Red Symbolize In Chinese New Year

Why red is the color of Chinese New Year?

Red is the traditional colour of the Han — the dominant ethnic group in China — that signifies good fortune, luck, vitality, celebration and prosperity. Especially during the Chinese New Year, the country’s people adorn themselves in red apparel to boost luck and ward off evil spirits.

A lot of Chinese people put a lot of meaning into colors and are very good at using color symbols. There’s no question that the color red is everywhere during the Chinese Spring Festival or Lunar New Year.

In Chinese society, red means life, celebration, good luck, wealth, and fiery energy. It is also linked to fire. Because red has a lot of cultural meaning, it is the color most often associated with good luck.

Small red boxes, or “hong bao,” are sent to each other as a tradition. People send these boxes with money inside to wish their loved ones luck and wealth in the new year.

Why do Chinese wear red at new year?

In Chinese culture, the colour red is considered lucky, representing happiness and success; believed to be a ‘power’ colour to ward off evil. So we wear red to attract luck.

Red is a very important color in Chinese society because it stands for fire and strength. It has become an important symbol over time, linked to energy, joy, happiness, wealth, and good luck.

Many people give red boxes, or “hong bao,” to others as a way to celebrate, especially around the Lunar New Year. People give these money-filled envelopes as a sign of peace and hope for the coming year. In addition to money, getting a red envelope means that someone is blessed and will have good luck. Sharing blessings with loved ones, being part of a group, and being kind are all cultural values that are shown in this tradition. In general, the bright red color and the practice of giving hong bao away show the spirit of happiness, wealth, and kindness that infuses Chinese holidays and celebrations.

It was the Year of the Rabbit in 2023, when the Chinese New Year started on January 22. Over 16 days, the Spring Festival is full of fun things to do and beloved traditions. The color red fills the air during the Christmas season, giving everything a bright look.

Colors are very important in Chinese society. They represent many traits and beliefs that have been passed down from generation to generation for thousands of years. These colors have their roots in myth and help us feel connected to our ancestors and the world around us.

Chinese custom holds red in a special place as a lucky color. It is the main color of celebration, going beyond being just a sign of the Lunar New Year. At weddings and other important events, people often wear clothes with a lot of red on them, which shows that it’s still important in Chinese society.

What does red symbolize in Chinese?

In China, red is auspicious—associated with life-generating energy (the sun, blood, and fire)—and is the color of celebrations and prosperity.

In Chinese society, red is a very important color because it means luck and good fortune. Being connected to fire, it carries ideas of life, energy, and brilliance. Red has always been associated with happiness, wealth, and success because it has good meanings. At events and weddings, this bright color is often the main attraction. Chinese wedding dresses usually use the color red, which shows how happy the couple is. Wearing red to a wake, on the other hand, is seen as very inappropriate because it makes people think of happiness.

Red is very important in Chinese society, as shown by how common it is. Many parts of society are filled with red, from the national flag to the red envelopes that people share during the Lunar New Year and the red lanterns that decorate festival events. Like in many other cultures, each color in Chinese culture has its meaning that comes from custom, history, and the ancient Chinese Five Elements Theory. Color meanings have been interpreted in many different ways over time, but the basic meaning is still deeply held in Chinese communities, showing a deep understanding of cultural history and symbolism.

What is the red thing for Chinese New Year?

At Lunar New Year, it’s tradition to give the gift of a bright, beautiful red envelope (known as 紅包, hóngbāo) to your friends and family. But not just any old envelope. These are filled with money – and symbolize good wishes and luck for the new year ahead.

The custom of giving red packages has its roots in old Chinese New Year stories. A monster named “Sui” is said to have scared kids on New Year’s Eve so much that their parents kept them up to protect them. One story says that when a child fell asleep with eight coins on his pillow, they turned into the Eight Immortals and kept the devil away with their blinding brightness. This is why the red bag that held these coins was called “Yasui Qian,” which means “suppressing Sui money.”

While red envelopes were first given to children, they are now often given to friends, family, and other cousins, with different amounts of money being customary for each relationship. Parents and grandparents often get bigger gifts, but people you work with or know may also expect a red package.

Some rules make it hard to trade red envelopes, like using clean, sharp sounds and staying away from the number “4” because it’s linked to death. Numbers that include the number “8,” on the other hand, mean happiness and success.

What colors not to wear on Chinese New Year?

Now, for what not to wear on Lunar New Year. It’s best to avoid black or white outfits, as, in Chinese culture, these colours are typically worn during mourning. Wearing all-white or all-black outfits during times of celebration can be confusing, as this signals you are mourning or conveying a negative message.

Need help deciding what to wear to Chinese New Year? Choosing clothes that are red or gold is a sure thing.

Here, “new” is the word that stands out. Changing clothes to mark the Lunar New Year is a sign of a new start in Chinese culture. People believe that buying new clothes is a good way to start a new year and bring them lots of luck.

For some, dressing in traditional Chinese clothes is part of enjoying the Chinese New Year. Men usually wear Tang suits, which have a unique stand-up collar and button designs that look like they were made in the Tang kingdom.

What kind or style of new clothes you have to buy needs to be clarified; anything hot or in style is fine, but clothes that are damaged or worn out on purpose are not allowed.

In the past, a lot of people only wore traditional Chinese clothes for Chinese New Year. People who like to keep things classic may still wear these kinds of clothes at Christmas today.

What Does Red Symbolize In Chinese New Year

People in the West usually think of bad things when they see the color red. For example, a traffic light: green means you can go, but red, which is the opposite of green on the color wheel, means you need to stop. Red is also often used for warning lights.

What makes people think of danger and care when they see the color red? The color’s brightness and easy visibility may have led to its use for warning signs and messages.

The difference between these two things shows how different Chinese and Western cultures are. Throughout Chinese history, the color red has always meant good things. During the Chinese New Year, people wear red clothes to protect themselves from bad spirits and show that they are wealthy. In an interesting twist, people often wear red from head to toe at the start of the new year because they believe the fiery color represents movement, vitality, desire, and love. Using red and other lucky colors in clothing and home decor is a common way to bring balance and success into your life.

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