Crayola is Introducing a Brand New Shade of Blue

By Tom Pritchard on at

Back in March Crayola announced that it was ditching the long-lasting Dandelion Yellow crayon in favour of something else. Over the weekend that new colour was revealed to be a brand new shade of blue. It's just like that bloody dress all over again.

Unlike the blues that are already included in Crayola's crayon sets, this one is based on a BRAND NEW pigment that was only just discovered called YInMn. And by 'only just' I mean it was discovered eight years ago in a chemistry lab at Oregon State University.

Materials science professor Mas Subramanian was messing about with a team of post-grad students, hoping to develop a new material that could be used in electronics. After heating one mixture to 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1,093.33 Celsius), they discovered everything had turned blue. But this was no ordinary blue, it was a BRAND NEW shade that nobody had ever seen before. The random-sounding YInMn name came from the compounds that went into the original mixture: yttrium, indium, and manganese oxides.

The crayon itself isn't actually made out of YInMn, because it's not allowed to be used in things yet. Instead the new colour is 'inspired by YInMn', which makes this whole thing seem like a cheap marketing trick. Or it's Crayola trying to match the general mood of society by replacing the warm sunny yellow with cold depressing blue.

Naturally YInMn is a pretty rubbish name for a crayon, so Crayola is holding a competition to find something better. You can submit your ideas, but since none of you live in North America you can't win anything except bragging rights. [Crayola via Slashgear]

More Design Posts: