What is the Meaning Behind Red and Green During Christmas?

The red and green colors during Christmas has significant meanings for Christians. Red symbolizes the blood of Jesus Christ, while green represents his eternal life.

Red and green are globally recognized as the colors of Christmas. These two colors became an automatic association with the holiday season.

But where did this association come from and why only these two colors?

Although the origins of the red and green colors during Christmas are uncertain, there are many theories surrounding them.

This article explores the possible reasons behind the choice of these colors during the Christmas season.

Why are Red and Green Associated with Christmas?

Christmas is a time where Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. However, it has become more about spending time with loved ones and exchanging gifts.

The association of red and green with Christmas stems from simple things, like Santa Claus’ red suit and the green Christmas tree.

However, the use of these two colors goes back further. Christians believe that red represents Jesus’ blood when he was crucified, while green symbolizes his eternal life, like an evergreen tree.

Others believe that red and green come from holly bushes, which have red berries and dark green leaves that thrive during the holiday season. Holly bushes are also used to make wreaths that decorate front doors during the Christmas season.

There are many links and stories that claim to be the reason for the color choices during Christmas. Some people believe that the colors have come from commercial influences.

Where did the Color Red Originate in Association with Christmas?

Although red has been a prominent color used during Christmas, it is said that Coca-Cola made it a dominant color.

In 1931, Coca-Cola advertisements became more popular in magazines, especially during the holiday season. Illustrator Haddon Sundblom was commissioned to create an advertisement with Santa Claus drinking Coca-Cola.

Sundblom wanted to create an image of the real Santa, rather than someone dressed as Santa. This illustration became a turning point in history because it was so lifelike that it became the image representation of the real Father Christmas.

Santa wore red, and from then on, Coca-Cola has continued to advertise with its red branding, making it an associated color of Christmas.

Why did the Color Green Become Associated with Christmas?

The association of green during Christmas does not have a significant defining moment like the color red.

Many associations link back to the flora and concept of bringing an evergreen tree into the home around Christmas time. The first documentation of bringing a tree into the home is in Roman culture when they celebrated Saturnalia.

During Saturnalia, which was celebrated from December 17 to 23, homes were decorated with holly and evergreen trees adorned with small figures.

Bringing trees inside during winter to decorate homes is one of the oldest Christmas traditions.

Christmas is widely associated with the color green because of the trees, holly, and mistletoe that we decorate our homes with.

What were the other Christmas colors used in history?

Victorian Christmas cards showed a variety of color combinations used during Christmas such as red and green, red and blue, blue and green, and blue and white.

The natural elements of flora and fauna during that time of year had an array of colors, many of which are still reflected in Christmas decorations today such as snow, icicles, robins, holly, and mistletoe.

Santa Claus even wore different colored suits such as red, green, and blue.

However, it wasn’t until 1931 when Christmas became more commercialized that red and green became the defining colors of the holiday.

Like other holidays, Christmas has its own traditions and associations, and red and green have been the colors of Christmas for hundreds of years.

The commercialization of the holiday has resulted in these two colors becoming the most prominent at Christmas, much like how orange and black are associated with Halloween.


1. Why are red and green associated with Christmas?

The colors red and green are associated with Christmas because of their historical and religious significance. Red represents the blood of Jesus Christ, who was born to die for our sins, while green is the color of evergreen trees and wreaths, which were used in ancient times to symbolize eternal life and hope.

2. When did red and green become the official colors of Christmas?

It is not clear when red and green became the official colors of Christmas, but they have been associated with the holiday for centuries. The use of evergreen trees and wreaths dates back to ancient pagan times, while red has been used in Christian art and decoration for centuries.

3. Do other countries use different colors for Christmas?

Yes, other countries use different colors for Christmas. In some countries, such as Mexico, red and green are still popular, but in others, such as Sweden and Norway, blue and white are the traditional colors of Christmas. In Japan, Christmas is often associated with the color red and the character Santa Claus, but the holiday is not widely celebrated as a religious holiday.

4. What other symbols are associated with Christmas?

Other symbols associated with Christmas include the Nativity scene, which depicts the birth of Jesus Christ, as well as Santa Claus, reindeer, and snowflakes. Each symbol has its own history and significance, but all are meant to celebrate the joy and hope of the holiday season.

5. Why do people decorate Christmas trees with red and green ornaments?

People decorate Christmas trees with red and green ornaments to symbolize the colors of Christmas and to add a festive touch to their homes. The tradition of decorating Christmas trees dates back to ancient times, when evergreen trees were used to symbolize eternal life and hope during the long winter months.

6. What is the history of the Christmas wreath?

The history of the Christmas wreath dates back to ancient Rome, where wreaths were used to celebrate the winter solstice. The tradition was later adopted by Christians, who used the evergreen wreath to symbolize eternal life and hope. Today, wreaths are a popular decoration during the holiday season and can be found in many homes and businesses.

7. Why do people give gifts at Christmas?

People give gifts at Christmas to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and to share the joy of the holiday season with their loved ones. The tradition of giving gifts dates back to the Wise Men, who brought gifts to the baby Jesus. Today, gift-giving is an important part of the holiday season and is a way to show love and appreciation for others.

8. What is the significance of Christmas stockings?

The tradition of hanging stockings by the fireplace dates back to ancient times, when people believed that Saint Nicholas would leave gifts in the stockings of good children. Today, stockings are a popular decoration during the holiday season and are often filled with small gifts and treats.

9. Why is Christmas such an important holiday?

Christmas is an important holiday because it celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, who is the central figure of Christianity. The holiday is a time for family, friends, and loved ones to come together and share the joy and hope of the season. It is a time for giving, sharing, and showing love and kindness to others.

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