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White: A Surprisingly Complex Color

The color white can symbolize many emotions, from peace to hope to newness and a fresh start. The science behind printing it is no less complex.

The Essence of White

White represents many contradictory feelings: fear and hope, celebrating new beginnings and mourning the dead, sand and snow, and other opposites. “The more you talk about white, the more complicated it gets,” says Rhode Island School of Design professor, James Goggin.

White Comes in Many Shades from New Sneakers to Fresh Snow: How Xerox Renders a Most Complex Color YouTube Video

"We turn to white when things are extreme, when they're big,” adds Jeff Goodby, founder of the advertising agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. He knows the color well—he came up with the iconic “Got Milk?” ads. “White might be the most evocative color because it can take on so many different forms,” says Goodby.

How Xerox White Printer Toner Works

In digital printing, Xerox white toner brings incredible versatility to the page. You can layer it on top of color paper stock for spot embellishments, put CMYK on top of it, and mix it with specialty colors to create an entirely new color. “Our white opens it up for artists and designers to do a lot,” says Xerox scientist Yat Ming-Wong.

Xerox’s white toner also makes a statement. “We have the brightest white,” says Xerox Color Imaging Manager Beatriz Custode. That is achieved by putting down three times as much ink mass as competitors. On the numerical measurement scale, a blinding white is 100 and paper white is in the 90s. “We measure around the 80s,” says Custode. “Competitive products measure around the 70s.”

Endless Capabilities of White Toner

Among artists, designers, and storytellers, the blank white page can induce anxiety, that element you must inevitably wrestle with to bring your creative ideas to life. Goody recommends taking a different, contradictory view: welcome the empty space and embrace the constraints. “It's a wonderful thing to jump in and give it character and color,” he says. “Or to just leave it alone and let it breathe. As a creator, how you choose to incorporate white into your work is up to you – and the options are limitless.

With digital presses from our Beyond CMYK portfolio, or our VersaLink® C8000W, you can harness the impact of white toner to infuse a variety of projects with bold white. Print eye-catching direct mail and envelopes, invitations, menus, and more media. Great for advertisements, you can also use white toner to accentuate the colors in window signs, window clings and banners. Create assets with existing logos and designs or create your own graphics with select software. Whether you need to print materials for a business or personal project, you get rich, saturated colors, top-quality resolution, and crisp, evocative white.

Explore all the ways you can work with white for contrast against black and vibrant colors with innovative white toner and ink from Xerox.

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