11 Colour Idioms That Will Improve Your English Fluency

As you may have guessed from the title of this article, we are going to talk about some idioms and phrases that have colour names in them. You can use these phrases in daily life conversations to make your English speaking skills better and to be a fluent English speaker. 

Catch Someone Red-Handed: 

It is a famous idiom used by a lot of speakers around the world. You can use it whenever needed. 

Meaning- It means to find or catch someone while he or she is doing something wrong or illegal. 


  • We have set up CCTV cameras in the building to catch the thief red-handed. 
  • He was caught red-handed while eating ice cream from the refrigerator. 

Green Fingers/Thumb: 

This idiom is one of the most famous idioms used for South-East Asian farmers as they were and are very good at growing plants. In America, “Green thumb” is commonly used. This idiom is also known as ‘Green Fingers’ in some other parts of the world. 

Meaning- It means having a natural talent for growing plants. 


  • You need to have a green thumb to get lovely roses in your garden. 
  • Your plants look awesome, it seems that you have green fingers. 

White Lie: 

You can use this phrase whenever you want to be polite and want to avoid hurting anyone’s feelings. 

Meaning- A white lie is a harmless lie that is told in order to be polite or to prevent someone from getting hurt. Let me make it clear with a real-life example; one of my friends sent me his favourite chocolate biscuits on my birthday. I did not like the bitter taste of those biscuits, but I told him that the biscuits were delicious. I lied because I did not want to hurt his feelings.


  • You told a white lie when you told her that she was not fat. 
  • I will have to tell a white lie because he is not well. 

Be In The Red: 

This idiom is used when someone is in debt. It is commonly used in every part of the world. 

Meaning- ‘Be in the red’ means to be in debt or in arrears. When you spend more than you earn, you end up taking loans and get into debt. When someone says that you are in red, they mean that you are in debt. This idiom is commonly used in business and financial institutions. 


  • When I was in the red, I had to ask my mother to pay my debt. 
  • This company’s account has been in the red for two years. 

Be Green With Envy: 

You can use this idiom whenever there is a matter that involves the emotion of jealousy or unhappiness. 

Meaning- ‘Be green with envy’ means to be extremely unhappy or jealous of something that someone has or does. 


  • She makes the impossible possible, and that’s what makes everyone in her workplace green with envy. 
  • They are going to London next week, and I’m green with envy. 

Out Of The Blue:

This phrase is used when something happens unexpectedly, all of a sudden. 

Meaning- It is a casual way to describe something that surprises you and possibly seems to come from nowhere without any expectations. 


  • He got a call from his childhood friend out of the blue. 
  • A boy came out of the blue and I nearly smashed my car. 

Have The Blues: 

When someone says, I feel blues at night or I have blues at night. It means that he or she is sad or depressed due to any reason during the night. This phrase is mainly used in informal communication. 

Meaning- This idiom means to feel sad or depressed.


  • I had blues after seeing my favorite car in bad condition. 
  • I felt blues when my sister left us. 

Once In A Blue Moon: 

Many people use this poetic idiom when they talk about something that happens rarely. 

Meaning- It refers to something very rare in occurrence. In simple words, when something happens very rarely or nearly never happens, then this idiom is used. When someone says, “I bathe once in a blue moon.” This means that he rarely or never bathes. 


  • I eat junk food once in a blue moon. 
  • I can afford to travel abroad once in a blue moon. 

Black Sheep:

Black sheep is a person or a member who does not fit in the group. Everyone in my family is tall, but my sister is short. In this sentence, my sister will be considered a Black sheep. 


  • I am the black sheep in my family because I dropped out of school. 
  • My classmates treated me like a black sheep because I do not play cricket. 

Grey Area:

When you are not sure about the set of rules or not clear about the situation, you can use this phrase. 

Meaning- Grey area is a situation that is not clear or that does not have any precise rules. It is a situation or area of activity not willingly conforming to a category or set of rules. 


  • My new coaching class is a grey area for using mobile phones. 
  • The judgment left a large grey area and much scope for argument. 

Green Light:

The meaning of the phrase green light can be guessed easily because we follow it every day on traffic signals. 

Meaning- ‘Green Light’ simply means permission to proceed or take an action. 


  • My father has given me the green light to go on the trip to Manali. 
  • The design team has given the green light to the new logo. 

I hope you enjoyed reading this write-up. I suggest that you use these idioms and phrases in your daily life conversations to enhance your vocabulary and improve your English speaking and writing skills.

October 19, 2021

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