Magazine topic: 

Colouring books for adults

by : 

I am currently on my year abroad working in a primary school in Paris, and whilst browsing book shops in French capital over the past few months, something strange has stood out to me - the huge amount of colouring books! No, I didn't accidentally wander into the children's section; with entire shelves devoted to adult colouring books and large displays in shop windows, it seems that France is finding colouring fashionable. 

Labelled as an 'anti-stress' activity, the colouring books for adults are being marketed as a means of relaxation. I have fond memories of carefully colouring in pictures when I was young, so perhaps it is the nostalgia of a childhood activity or trying to colour 'inside the lines' that provides a new form of therapy to help us de-stress. 

These 'adult' colouring books are designed to be a lot more challenging than a child's copy. All of the books that I have seen have very intricate and detailed designs, and as they are becoming increasingly popular, hundreds more of the books are being published to cater to every taste imaginable. These range from elaborate gardens and royal palaces to city skylines or wild beasts! Even editions of Monet and Picasso paintings are available for you to add colour to.

Wanting to see what the fuss is all about, some friends and I decided to buy an adult colouring book for ourselves. At first it felt naughty doing an activity that I would usually see my students doing, but after a few pages of very neat, silent colouring we started to use our imagination - a purple giraffe with green spots, and a black and white polka dot taxi! It was nice to have a period of relaxation without the constant buzz of my phone and the modern world fighting for my attention.

By doing something out of the ordinary that required patience and attention, for a few minutes I had forgotten about all of my stress and worry from the day, and even stretched my imagination. I even had a pretty picture to pin up in my room. Maybe the French are on to something after all.


What do you do to avoid stress? Do you think colouring is only for children? 


iva10's picture
iva10 27 September, 2015 - 12:18

I try to calm down but if that doesn't work i punch the pilow so the anger would go away.I don't think coloring is just for children in fact we al remain children in our hearts.I like to draw i'm realy good at it but i like drawing something that exists.

0 users have voted.
Ken's picture
Ken 4 August, 2015 - 06:58

I'll try to do coloring someday when I get stressed...(๑•́‧̫•̀๑) For the meantime, having a good sleep, good food and hot bath will quickly release me from stress!
: ( '́⌣'̀)/♫•*¨*•.¸¸♪

0 users have voted.
kasandra13's picture
kasandra13 3 August, 2015 - 12:02

I didn`t like colouring when I was small. I liked painting instead. I would water a piece of paper and put different colours on it. It was fun.Then images appeared, I just made them finished. Sometimes, I was the only person who knew what those pictures were.Ha,but it was fun! Now I often do wet painting with my nephew and his friends.I like it till now.

0 users have voted.
Rika's picture
Rika 15 April, 2015 - 17:26

I don't think that colouring is only for children , to avoid stress i often listen to music or i read books .

0 users have voted.
yuumj's picture
yuumj 13 April, 2015 - 15:43

To avoid stress I usually listen to music or sleep. I don't think colouring is only for children

0 users have voted.
hadia's picture
hadia 1 April, 2015 - 08:55

Colouring books have always been a good way of avoiding stress. I usually do colouring, drawing or spend my time my reading books whenever I'm feeling stressed. It's a great fun and really very amusing. After spending a hectic day, this is really a good method to avoid stress for me because I spend my almost whole of the day studying or attending lectures in school so I always adopt this method for releasing stress or I watch cartoon and of course this is not only for children but even adults can also do it. Therefore, we can do colouring whenever we find free time to make us feel relaxed! :)

0 users have voted.
Elsa007's picture
Elsa007 7 March, 2015 - 14:27

Yes, I agree that colouring can be a way to destress. Come to think of it, I haven't enjoyed coloring for ages!
The article reminded me of one time I accidentally picked up a piece of paper and started to draw a rough sketch of things around me to forget about all of my stress, worry and loneliness at that time. I found it quite effective as a means of relaxation!
Either coloruing books and drawing sketches leaves rooms for some imagination, which may be the lost art adults tend to overlook….!

0 users have voted.
Harabeli Supersweet's picture
Harabeli Supersweet 30 January, 2015 - 15:26

I do many activities to avoid stress, like jumping in ropes, gymnastic, drawing and colouring, watching Disney movies, because happy endings really make me feel more optimistic etc. I think colouring is not only for children. I find it really interesting even now. I still spend time colouring Tinkerbell or Barbie books. I enjoy it very much, even why now I don't have as much time as I had when I was a little kid and I would spend all day drawing and colouring.

0 users have voted.