About the color system

The Citadel color palette is an important differentiator for our visual identity.  By using color wisely, you can help create a strong visual identity for The Citadel brand.

PMS, CMYK, RGB, HEX—what does it all mean? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Primary Color Palette

Our color palette consists of three colors—Infantry Blue, Flag Blue and Dress White. All three colors should be represented together as often as possible.

Infantry Blue

PMS 542 C
R 123 G 173 B 211
C 51 M 21 Y 6 K 0
HEX 7badd3

Flag Blue

PMS 295 C
R 0 G 40 B 86
C 100 M 84 Y 36 K 39
HEX 002856

Dress White

R 255 G 255 B 255
C 0 M 0 Y 0 K 0

Secondary Color Palette

The secondary and tertiary color palettes are designed to provide creative flexibility. These colors are complementary to the primary color palette, and should be used in addition to, not in place of, the primary color palette. 

Ring Gold

PMS 7409 C
7 M 33 Y 100 K 0
R 237 G 174 23
HEX edae17

Big Red

PMS 200 C
18 M 100 Y 87 K 9
R 186 12 47
HEX ba0c2f

Duty Gray

PMS 433
41 M 31 Y 32 K 0
R 158 161 162
HEX 9ea1a2

Tertiary Color Palette

Modern Blue

PMS 660 C
76 M 47 Y 0 K 0
R 61 124 201
HEX 3d7cc9

Bulldog Gray

PMS 7541 C
14 M 7 Y 8 K 0
R 216 223 225
HEX d8dfe1

Color Modes

There are four main color modes that keep our colors consistent across print, web and merchandising.

PMS—Pantone® Matching System

Pantone® Matching System colors are patented, standardized color inks made by the Pantone company. We use PMS colors for our branding, especially our logos, to ensure the highest color consistency across print products.

PMS colors are only used for offset printing. One or two-color print jobs often use PMS colors, but they can also be used as spot colors in addition to four-color process. You can also use PMS color codes when working with vendors to order promotional products. By providing our unique PMS color code, they’ll be able to help you find merchandise that closely matches the colors of our brand.

CMYK—Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key (Black)

The CMYK color mode uses different combinations of large and small transparent dots in four inks colors—cyan, magenta, yellow and black—which overlap to create a wide spectrum of colors

The CMYK color mode is used in for offset and digital printing. CMYK colors are ideal for full-color brochures, flyers, posters and other printed designs. When you’re sending a project to the printer in your office, use the CMYK color mode.

RGB—Red, Green, and Blue

When using the RGB color mode, colors are rendered onscreen by using combinations of red, green and blue.

RGB is specific to digital applications only. This includes mobile devices, computer monitors, laptops, TV and movie screens, games and illuminated signs. Use the RGB color mode when you’re designing for social media, digital design or online content.


A HEX color code is shorthand for its RGB values. Use the HEX color mode when you’re working on web design.

Why do I need to worry about the color mode?

Using the incorrect color mode often leads to disappointment when you see your finished piece.

For example, if you design a flyer onscreen in the RGB color mode, it will appear vibrant because the colors are illuminated and there is a larger range in color gamut than what you’d get on the printed page. However, when you print the document, you’ll notice the colors appear dull. The CMYK color mode compensates for the loss of color gamut—on the screen the colors will appear more vibrant than you expect, but the printed product will be consistent with our brand colors.