What Exactly Is Millennial Pink and Why Are People Still So Obsessed With It?

In 2018, more than 25 years after the term Millennial was first applied to a generation, the Pew Research Center finally nailed down a finite age range for that demographic: anyone born between 1981 and 1996. By that point, Millennials were already in their twenties and thirties and well into establishing their own cultural trends. Chief among them was Millennial Pink, a somewhat ambiguous color that took the design world by storm  and has yet to relinquish its hold. Unlike Water Ballet or Cinnamon Swirl, Millennial Pink isn’t the name of a specific Pantone color. Instead, it’s an unofficial term for an equally unofficial family of colors that includes everything from pink-ish beige to muted salmon. What unites the hues is their softness; if it looks like something your old Barbie dolls wore, it’s probably too bright to be considered Millennial Pink. Though the shades started creeping up in fashion and advertising nearly a decade ago, it took until 2016 for Millennials to realize that their entire lives — clothes, product packaging, advertising, decor, etc. — were coated in a lovely — somewhat dull — light pink. As for whether Millennial Pink will have the same appeal for Generation Z or even Generation Alpha, the jury is still out. Considering the recent resurgence of early 2000s trends, hot pink may be mounting a comeback.