It’s time to relive your childhood – coloring books are back!
Recently, sales of coloring books for grown-ups have skyrocketed, and bookstores are having more trouble keeping certain coloring books on the shelves than even popular titles like 50 Shades of Grey. These bestselling coloring books are billed as “color therapy” or cheap stress relief, a time for adults to unplug from the rush of the digital world and just sit down with a few coloring pages and a nice set of colored pencils. What more could you ask for?
A community of “colorists” is growing up around the trend. Colorists use their coloring books to perfect their shading skills, and share the results online in communities or in the reviews for the books they are working on. Some colorists use coloring as an opportunity to explore new topics, like Victorian mansions or art deco, that they might not have taken the time to explore otherwise.
And hey, got a friend who is really stressed out? These adult coloring books make great gifts for that friend who just can’t seem to calm down.
This page contains affiliate links. That means, if you buy anything, you’ll help me pay for my coloring book addiction. Enjoy this list and I hope you find your next favorite coloring book!
There’s so much more to coloring book therapy than just staying inside the lines.
Many books billed as “adult coloring books” specifically contain incredibly detailed designs that might frustrate a younger child but are perfect for giving us just the right amount of mental taxation. You can practice your shading and come up with some really incredible artwork. Some encourage you to doodle within their doodles.
And at the end, you don’t have to just close away your artwork and shove it back into the shelf – you can take that artwork and share it with the world, either by posting it online or by framing it and hanging it on your wall. Embrace your favorite designs!
Here are the 75 best coloring books for adults.
Many of these coloring books have had their fair share of time at the top of Amazon’s best sellers list for coloring books, and a few have even made it into the best sellers for books overall. The coloring books for adults below have been organized into categories like patterns and architecture, depending on what you’re in the mood for coloring.
There’s also a section with my recommendations for what to color with, whether you prefer colored pencils or pens or markers.
Don’t know what you’re in the mood for? That’s okay! Scroll through and find what leaps out at you. Coloring books are really inexpensive (typically in the $5-20 range!) so it’s perfectly fine to get a handful to figure out what you like. Remember, it’s way cheaper than a therapist and will provide you hours and hours of enjoyment!
I’ve tried to provide notes about the types of designs in these books, the thickness of the paper, and any other special features worth noting, but in some ways, the Amazon reviews are your best friend when deciding what to buy. Click through to read them! Often, other colorists will share a few pages from the book or share their colored-in masterpieces.
If there’s anything really vital I’m missing, I would LOVE it if you took the time to leave me a note in the comments below. And if your favorite coloring book isn’t in this list, I’d like to know about that, too!
Be the first to know about great coloring books!
Amazing new adult coloring books come out every day. Let me find them for you! Sign up here to get an email every time I publish a new coloring book list.
One last quick tip: Did you know that you can get your coloring books in just TWO DAYS with FREE shipping by signing up for a free trial of Amazon Prime? That’s almost as fast as buying coloring books at the store, except you get a million times the selection (I mean, just look at this list) and you don’t even have to change out of your PJs! (Win-win!)
The trial lasts for 30 days, and there is no minimum order price in order to get the free shipping (without Prime, you generally need to hit $35 to get the free shipping, and even then, you don’t get it in just two days)! Get those books ASAP by signing up for the free trial (click here!), and if you don’t want to keep the Prime benefits, just cancel before your 30 days are up. You might end up loving Prime, too — I know we do! With the amount we order from Amazon, I’m sure our Prime membership has paid for itself many times over in quick, free shipping.
Click the buttons below to jump to the different genres of adult coloring books:
Last Updated: March 5, 2016
The Top 10 Best-Selling Adult Coloring Books Right Now
I am keeping this section up to date with the top 10 bestselling coloring books for adults right now!
- Adult Coloring Books: A Coloring Book for Adults Featuring Mandalas and Henna Inspired Flowers, Animals, and Paisley Patterns
- Calm the F*ck Down: An Irreverent Adult Coloring Book NEW!
- Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Animal Designs
- Creative Haven Owls Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
- Adult Coloring Book: Butterflies and Flowers: Stress Relieving Patterns
- Adult Coloring Book Designs: Stress Relief Coloring Book: Garden Designs, Mandalas, Animals, and Paisley Patterns
- Secret Garden: An Inky Treasure Hunt and Coloring Book
- Enchanted Forest: An Inky Quest & Coloring Book
- The Sweary Coloring Book for Adults (Swear Word Coloring Book) NEW!
- Doctor Who Coloring Book
Pattern Coloring Books for Adults
These books all take doodling to a new level. Patterns are some of the most stress-busting designs of all to color because the repetition allows you to really get in the zone about your color selection and shading. You can focus on choosing a pleasing palette instead of getting bogged down in the “right” colors. They’re a great place to start for beginners, although some colorists prefer more concrete topics like animals or architecture.
Adult Coloring Books: A Coloring Book for Adults Featuring Mandalas and Henna Inspired Flowers, Animals, and Paisley Patterns
This beautiful collection of mandalas, flowers, animals, and paisley patterns was just recently released and already has skyrocketed to be a #1 bestseller on Amazon. The book features 48 images printed on one side only inspired by henna, which vary in complexity from reasonably minimal to ideal for experienced colorists. This is really a coloring book that can grow with your coloring skills. Markers bleed through the pages, so be sure to protext the next one with a few sheets of paper.
Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns
A #1 bestseller on Amazon, Stress Relieving Patterns features 45 gorgeous and finely-detailed patterns to color. The pages are printed on just one side on medium weight paper.
Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns Volume 2
Volume 2 of the beloved Stress Relieving Patterns features another 40 detailed patterns printed on one side of medium weight paper.
Creative Haven Mandala Madness Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
If you love mandalas, you’re in for a treat. This collection of 30 mesmerizing kaleidoscopic mandalas illustrated by John Wik is printed one per side on medium weight paper. The book offers a good mix of wide spaces for gradient shading and fine details, and it is just repetitive enough to really let you sink into the color selection process. Like all Creative Haven books, the pages are perforated for easy removal.
Balance (Angie’s Extreme Stress Menders Volume 1)
Angie Grace’s beautiful stress-busting coloring book for adults is full of 50 circular patterned illustrations, or mandalas, printed on just one side of the page. Paper is of medium weight and pens like the Staedtler Triplus Fineliners should be fine, but you might need to put a scrap page behind to accommodate for bleed from larger markers.
Coloring Book for Grown Ups: Creative Patterns for Adults
This beautiful collection features 29 illustrations to color, with lots of animals, flowers, forests, and butterflies. You will have trouble putting this one down!
Dream Catcher: mindfulness: A beautiful, stress-reducing colouring book to clear your mind & help you find peace
While this coloring book is a little less abstract than some of the books in this part of the list, the expansive doodles of landscapes, keys, and rooms will give you a lot of room for colorful creativity. This adult coloring book has dozens of gorgeous illustrations printed on one side. Alongside the illustrations are mindfulness quotes and affirmations to keep your stress down.
Really RELAXING Colouring Book 10: Colour Therapy
This book, designed for maximum relaxation, features around 30 illustrations printed on just one side of the page. From feathers to loops and swirls, this book is great for new colorists or for experienced colorists planning to practice their shading. Pages are printed on just one side, making them safe for markers.
Today Is Going To Be A Great Day: Inspirational Adult Coloring Book
This brand new release is an inspirational, spiritual book that celebrates the joy of putting color to the page. The book features animals, repeating patterns, florals, and scripture set in gorgeous typography. Its 128 perforated pages are printed on just one side, making them safe for markers. In addition to regular coloring pages, you’ll find bookmarks, gift tags, and cards that make it easy to share the joy of coloring with your friends and family. Today is going to be a GREAT day, with this coloring book!
Creative Haven Dreamscapes Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
Get lost in the details in this detailed doodle coloring book. Thirty-one illustrations are printed on one side of medium-weight perforated paper.
Color Me Calm: 100 Coloring Templates for Meditation and Relaxation (A Zen Coloring Book)
This meditative coloring book was designed by an art therapist and an illustrator to calm you down with 100 high-quality illustrations of mandalas, geometric patterns, water scenes, wooded scenes, animals, and more. Designs are printed on just one side of the page.
Color Me Happy: 100 Coloring Templates That Will Make You Smile (A Zen Coloring Book)
Continuing the Color Me series, Color Me Happy is a cheerful collection of 100 single-sided illustrations featuring smiling animals, lovely landscapes, and pleasant people.
Color Me Stress-Free: 100 Coloring Templates to Unplug and Unwind (A Zen Coloring Book)
Color Me Stress-Free is an upcoming addition to Lacy Mucklow and Angela Porter’s Color Me series (which was why I wasn’t able to find a page screenshot!). Judging by the popularity of the two earlier volumes, above, this one is sure to please!
The Can’t Sleep Colouring Book (Creative Colouring for Grown-Ups)
Can’t sleep? Don’t fret — this book will be the perfect wind-down from a stressful, busy day. Keep it and a pack of pencils on your nightstand so you can always turn and spend a few minutes engrossed in a coloring project when you’re tossing and turning.
Really RELAXING Colouring Book 8: Amazing Art Deco (Really RELAXING Colouring Books Volume 8)
If you love the bold and beautiful iconography of the age of art deco, this pattern coloring book for adults is for you. Part of the Cool Colouring Books series, the illustrations are printed on just one side on a medium weight paper that can support ink and, according to the publisher, even paint!
Really RELAXING Colouring Book 2: Colour Me Calm (Really RELAXING Colouring Books, Volume 2)
Another coloring book by Elizabeth James, this book boasts thick pages and relaxing illustrations that will suck you right in.
The Mindfulness Coloring Book: Anti-Stress Art Therapy for Busy People
The Mindfulness Coloring Book has a great mixture of full page patterned doodles and more real-life patterns, like waves and sets of teacups. 70 gorgeous designs are printed edge to edge in this pocket-sized 5″x7″ book. The petite size makes this coloring book the perfect companion for flights or waiting rooms.
Just Add Color: Mid-Century Modern Patterns: 30 Original Illustrations To Color, Customize, and Hang
Jenn Ski is an extremely talented illustrator obsessed with mid-century designs. The 30 designs come printed single-sided with perforated pages to make it easy to detach and frame your finished colorings. The paper is heavier than that of most coloring books, allowing all but the darkest of inks to stay put without bleeding through.
Just Add Color: Geometric Patterns: 30 Original Illustrations To Color, Customize, and Hang
Lisa Congdon’s patterns are charmingly hand-drawn despite their being geometric. This book is made up of 30 single-sided pages with perforations to make them easier to remove.
Zen Doodle Coloring Book: Relax and Relieve Stress with Adult Coloring Pages
This book of zenlike doodles features sealife, flora, animals, patterns, letters, and more. The over 100 illustrations are printed on heavy paper that stands up to pastels and even watercolors.
Mystical Mandala Coloring Book (Dover Design Coloring Books)
Enjoy mandalas? Then you’ll love this book which is entirely composed of them! It is an older Dover coloring book to be sure, but the ecstatic reviewers keep coming back to it with delight. Ome of them even ordered a stack to try in different color combinations! There are 30 illustrations on both sides of medium-weight paper. Markers will bleed through, so you might prefer colored pencils for this one.
Detailed Designs and Beautiful Patterns (Sacred Mandala Designs and Patterns Coloring Books for Adults, Volume 28)
Get lost in this gorgeous collection of mandalas, loops, and swirls. The book includes 21 pages printed on one side only.
Paisley Designs Coloring Book (Dover Design Coloring Books)
Marty Noble has brought her illustration talents to this collection of paisley-inspired designs. Thirty illustrations are printed on the front and back of the page, so the book is not suited for markers, and reviewers warn that too much pressure from colored pencils can transfer the ink to the page behind, so be sure to protect it with a blank page slid in between. You’re sure to find hours of entertainment in this collection.
Travel / Architecture Coloring Books for Adults
Architecture coloring books are some of my favorites. I’ve also labeled this section “travel” because many of these books allow you to explore a new part of the country or world. You can look up real-world images of these places as you color them, or, you know, totally recolor them. The Eiffel Tower looked better in purple anyway.
The Victorian House Coloring Book
This Dover coloring book has always been one of my favorites. The book features exterior shots and interior illustrations of a typical Victorian-era home. Dollhouse lovers and interior design buffs will love this high-quality book with descriptions alongside each image.
Famous Buildings of Frank Lloyd Wright (Dover History Coloring Book)
This incredibly detailed book features many of the most famous buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The images are as close to photo-realistic as a coloring book gets, and require a fine point.
Just Add Color: Mid-Century Modern Mania: 30 Original Illustrations To Color, Customize, and Hang
Jenn Ski’s gorgeous mid-century illustrations make a comeback in this collection of 30 one-sided designs, featuring interiors as well as mid-century objects.
Really COOL Colouring Book 1: Dream Homes & Interiors (Really COOL Colouring Books, Volume 1)
Enjoy this beautiful book of modern homes and interiors printed on just one side of the page.
Fantastic Cities: A Coloring Book of Amazing Places Real and Imagined
With some of the finest detail work I’ve ever seen in a coloring book, this new architectural coloring masterpiece is definitely best suited for an adult. Color an entire city the way your heart desires, from high aerial shots to street views and even unique kaleidoscopic images. I’ve literally been waiting months to get my hands on it!
Splendid Cities: Color Your Way to Calm
This #1 Amazon bestseller is a very recent release that has received much acclaim. Each of the 42 illustrations feature fantastical cities and takes up a full two page spread. Pages are not as thick as some, so colored pencils are recommended.
Secret Paris: Color Your Way to Calm
Experience the secret world of Paris in this beautiful coloring book. Scenes include streets, rooftops, patterns, objects, and more. As a warning, do not use markers in this book — illustrations are printed on both sides of the page and the ink will bleed through.
Secret New York: Color Your Way to Calm
Get ready – this upcoming book by the same artist as Secret Paris, Zoe de Las Cases, will explore New York City on the same level as her last book. Preorder now to receive the book upon its release this October.
Secret Tokyo: Color Your Way to Calm
Lovers of Japanese culture will adore this upcoming book by Zoe de Las Cases. Set to be released alongside her NYC book, above, this Tokyo book is sure to be a popular title.
Love Japanese coloring books? I have a whole list of them here!
Color this Book: San Francisco
From everyday street scenes to famous neighborhoods and landmarks, Abbi Jacobson masterfully captures life in San Francisco. With 30 illustrations to color, you’ll really enjoy this one!
Creative Haven CityScapes: A Coloring Book with a Hidden Picture Twist (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
This lovely coloring book by Creative Haven takes colorists around the world to visit cities like Amsterdam (shown), Paris, London, San Francisco, Chicago, and New York City. Each page is perforated, printed on just one side, and includes a hidden picture.
Animal Coloring Books for Adults
Animals are one of the most popular coloring book topics for children, but there are a lot of more detailed coloring books perfect for adults, too. If you have a favorite animal, there’s probably a coloring book devoted to it. Some of these books are unique because they include beautiful doodles within the animals – giving them a whole new dimension and realm of possibilities.
Creative Haven Owls Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
With their feathers and wide eyes, owls are a popular subject for animal coloring books. This book takes the owls one step further, including lots of abstract doodles to color in whatever hues you desire. These 30 highly-detailed owls are perched against vivid backgrounds. Pages are of medium weight and single-sided and perforated for easy removal.
Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Animal Designs
Stress Relieving Animal Designs is a #1 bestseller from Amazon, and it’s no wonder why. These amazing animal designs are printed one animal per page, with a blank background and the reverse left blank. The pages are somewhat thin, so you will want to protect the next page by sliding another few sheets of paper underneath if you color it with pens, gel pens, or markers.
Adult Coloring Book: Ocean Animal Patterns
This book is the second volume of stress-relieving animal designs, by the creators of the book above. Thirty ocean animal designs are printed one animal per page, with a blank background. Once you finish coloring these fish, jellyfish, sharks, octopi, and other ocean animals, they are perfect for cutting out and putting up on your wall! Like the prior volume, pages are a little thin, so protect the design behind with a few sheets of paper if you use ink-based coloring supplies.
Creative Coloring Animals: Art Activity Pages to Relax and Enjoy! (Design Originals)
Let these lovingly-patterned animals take you to another place. Each of these 30 animal designs are patterned with intricate loops and swirls, giving you the opportunity to color them with a collection of shades instead of just shading large areas in one color. The book includes ideas for how to color the animals, plus some doodling and coloring guidance. You’ll need to use colored pencils, gel pens, or fine-tipped markers in order to truly take advantage of the detail of this book.
Creative Haven Creative Cats Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
Cat lovers will adore this coloring book devoted to their favorite feline friends. More than 30 full page illustrations are printed on one side of medium weight, perforated paper.
Dapper Animals Coloring Book (Design Originals)
Break out the colored pencils and get ready to color some finely dressed animals! Thaneeya McArdle has grown quite a following for her fun coloring books that are just begging to be colored. This one is perfect for both novice and experienced colorists who love fashions and furry friends. Each of the 30 illustrations is printed on just one side of the page on thick, easily-removable paper perfect for any medium.
Coloring Ocean Mandalas: 30 Hand-Drawn Designs for Mindful Relaxation
This gorgeous book by Wendy Piersall blends intricate mandalas with beautiful ocean imagery ranging from mermaids to dolphins to whales and waves. The illustrations are repetitive enough to be relaxing but the whimsical, interlaced designs keep them interesting. The book is available on Amazon for preorder with Amazon’s price guarantee (if the price goes down between when you order and the release date, Amazon will give you the lowest price) and becomes available in mid-December. Give yourself the gift of creative relaxation this holiday season!
Creative Haven Incredible Insect Designs Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
Looking for something a little different? This coloring book by Creative Haven may be exactly what you are looking for. Featuring more than 30 ornately patterned grasshoppers, beetles, butterflies, ladybugs, and more, you are sure to find an insect you’d like to transform with color inside this book.
Lost Ocean: An Inky Adventure and Coloring Book
Lost Ocean is the latest title by world-reknowned illustrator Johanna Basford, who spearheaded the adult coloring book movement with her earlier books Secret Garden and Enchanted Forest (see these two below in the Floral section). Get lost in an intricate underwater world blossoming with plant and animal life, including fish, octopi, seahorses, and starfish. Explore the bottom of the ocean, shipwrecks, and even discover the pirate’s treasure. The book is available for preorder (order now, and Amazon will give you the lowest preorder price between when you order and when the book becomes available) and will be out in late October.
Animorphia: An Extreme Coloring and Search Challenge
Fans of highly-detailed adult coloring books will love Kerby Rosanes’ illustrations, which feature an immensely detailed animal morphing into a wild collection of doodles. The book is available for preorder and will be available in mid-October.
Animal Kingdom: Color Me, Draw Me
Get lost in wildly patterned pages printed right to the edge and featuring all of your favorite animals. There are a total of 88 pages to color, which are printed on the front and back of heavy weight paper. Markers are not recommended since they could bleed, and you should test your gel pens before using them, but the designs are perfect for colored pencils. (page preview found here)
Dream Catcher: a soul bird’s journey: A beautiful and inspiring colouring book for all ages
This beautiful coloring book follows a bird on an adventure across a wide variety of fantastical landscapes. The book’s 51 illustrated are printed on one side of the page on medium weight paper that stands up to many gel pens and markers. A dotted line serves as a guide for cutting out the pages.
Dover Creative Haven Art Nouveau Animal Designs Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
If you like the art deco style, you’ll love this Creative Haven collection of art deco patterned animals. The book’s 31 elegant designs are printed on just one side of perforated pages for easy removal.
Just Add Color: Mid-Century Modern Animals: 30 Original Illustrations To Color, Customize, and Hang
Jenn Ski’s gorgeous mid-century style makes a comeback in this collection of 30 mid-century modern animals. Designs are printed on one side of a medium-weight, perforated page.
Floral Coloring Books for Adults
Floral scenes and patterns are very popular. Some books take a more abstract approach, filling the pages with abstract floral-themed doodles, while others take more of a still-life approach. Regardless of your preference, floral books are the perfect canvas for perfecting your shading, because petals present a challenging set of highlights and shadows.
Enchanted Forest: An Inky Quest & Coloring Book
This #1 New York Times Bestseller by Johanna Basford is sure to delight colorists who love filling in floral designs. With page after page of animals set into forested scenery, this book boasts 82 pages of illustrations printed front and back. The jacket is colorable, as well as a full four-page fold-out at the end of the book. Because of the two-sided pages, this book is not suitable for thick markers, but some reviewers seem to indicate that Staedtler Triplus Fineliners work fine.
Can’t get enough Enchanted Forest? Johanna Basford has also released Enchanted Garden postcards.
Secret Garden: An Inky Treasure Hunt and Coloring Book
Another fabulous book by Johanna Basford, Secret Garden takes colorists through an ornate garden full of friendly creatures and insects to color. Pages are printed on both sides of medium weight paper, so markers will probably bleed through but the book is perfect for colored pencils.
Can’t get enough Secret Garden? Johanna Basford has released Secret Garden mini journals, Secret Garden notecards, and Secret Garden postcards. There’s also a Secret Garden artist edition in the works!
Vive Le Color! Japan (Coloring Book): Color In; De-stress (72 Tear-out Pages)
Vive Le Color! Japan is an experienced colorist’s dream come true. This book, due out in mid-August, boasts many special features missing from popular adult coloring books like Secret Garden or Enchanted Garden. There are 72 illustrations printed on just one side of the page, making the book perfect for whatever medium you’d like to use in it. The sheets are bound at the top as opposed to the side, making it equally useful for left- and right-handed colorists, and pages detach easily. Finally, it has a thick cardboard back, making it easy to color in your lap! Right now, the book is over 50% off on Amazon – preorder your copy today!
Creative Haven Midnight Garden Coloring Book: Heart & Flower Designs on a Dramatic Black Background (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
This high-quality Creative Haven coloring book is due out in mid-December, and I’m really excited about it because of the black backgrounds, which are guaranteed to make any choice of colors pop! Like all Creative Haven books, pages are printed on just one side and are perforated for easy removal. The book features 31 gorgeous designs.
Flower Designs Coloring Book (Volume 1)
Flower-loving colorists will be in bliss working their way through this incredibly detailed flower coloring book. The book contains 50 floral designs printed on just one side of the page.
Really RELAXING Colouring Book 3: Botanicals in Bloom: A Fun, Floral Colouring Adventure (Really RELAXING Colouring Books, Volume 3)
Part of Elizabeth James’ Relaxing Coloring Book series, Botanicals in Bloom features 30 illustrations printed on one side of medium weight paper.
Really RELAXING Colouring Book 4: Natural Wonders: A Colourful Journey Through the Natural World (Really RELAXING Colouring Books, Volume 4)
The next volume in the Relaxing Coloring Books series, Natural Wonders features many floral scenes as well as mushrooms, leaves, and more.
Just Add Color: Botanicals: 30 Original Illustrations To Color, Customize, and Hang
Thirty beautiful floral designs from coloring book artist Lisa Congdon. Pages are printed on just one side and have a perforation to make them easy to rip out.
Floral Alphabet Coloring Book (Dover Design Coloring Books)
This classic 1987 letterform coloring book from Dover is one I fondly remember from my childhood! Available for just a few dollars on Amazon, this book is a must-have for colorists who enjoy realistic florals. There are 26 pages to color (one per letter), printed on just one side of the page.
Science Coloring Books for Adults
Want to actually learn something while you color? These science-themed coloring books will give you a great introduction to a new subject, or they’ll be a great learning aid if you’re currently studying them!
The Anatomy Coloring Book
The world’s premiere anatomy coloring book and a bestseller on Amazon, The Anatomy Coloring Book has been the standard anatomy coloring book for more than 35 years. Illustrations are precise, clearly labeled, and designed to increase understanding.
The Art of Nature Coloring Book: 60 Illustrations Inspired by Vintage Botanical and Scientific Prints
Have you ever wanted to color in those gorgeous black and white images in the encyclopedia? No? Maybe that was just me. In case you feel the same way, though, this brilliant book collects vintage-style illustrations to color.
Exploring the Solar System (Dover Nature Coloring Book)
Learn more about our solar system and the people who helped discover more of it. Features 44 illustrations to color.
Artwork Coloring Books for Adults
If you love artwork, you’ll love these coloring book adaptations of famous works, classic and modern.
The Tattoo Coloring Book
The Tattoo Coloring Book features a large variety of tattoo-inspired artwork with patches of gold printed within them. The paper is quite heavy, making it perfect for whatever medium you prefer. Whether you are planning some body art for yourself or just enjoy the edgy subject matter, you’re sure to enjoy this unique book.
Color Your Own Japanese Woodblock Prints (Dover Art Coloring Book)
Do you love traditional Japanese art? Are you interested in Japanese culture? This book is a great way to create your own versions of classic Japanese artworks like the wave. Designs are printed on both sides of the page, so avoid markers.
Love Japanese coloring books? I have a whole list of them here!
Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Art Deco
Embrace the beautiful art deco style with this collection of 54 illustrations printed on only one side of the page. Pages are thin, so you will need to place a few sheets between each page to color with anything besides colored pencils.
Color Your Own Great Paintings by Women Artists (Dover Art Coloring Book)
Celebrate your favorite female artists like Frida Kahlo and Mary Cassatt with this beautiful collection of women artists’ work to color.
Color Your Own Van Gogh Paintings (Dover Art Coloring Book)
Celebrate one of the most famous artists of all time, Vincent van Gogh, with this collection of 30 black and white ready-to-color renditions of his most famous works.
Art Masterpieces to Color: 60 Great Paintings from Botticelli to Picasso (Dover Art Coloring Book)
If you enjoy coloring your own versions of works by famous artists, you’ll love this collection of 60 famous paintings.
Outside the Lines: An Artists’ Coloring Book for Giant Imaginations
Maybe modern art is more your style. Enjoy this collection of contemporary illustrations from over 100 artists. Pages are printed on one side only. You’ll want really fine point art materials for coloring in this one.
History Coloring Books for Adults
History buffs will appreciate these coloring books. The history coloring book market is completely dominated by Dover Publishing, with their high-quality and thoroughly researched scenes. As an added plus, many of these books are super cheap, around $5 each. A great way to explore a part of history you’re unfamiliar with!
Life in Old Japan Coloring Book (Dover History Coloring Book)
If you love Japanese culture, you’ll love this coloring book, which depicts scenes from traditional Japanese homes, cities, and a tea ceremony. Enjoy over 40 illustrations, printed back to back.
Love Japanese coloring books? I have a whole list of them here!
Historic American Landmarks (Dover History Coloring Book)
Visit 28 different American landmarks in this finely detailed Dover history coloring book.
American Presidents Coloring Book (Dover History Coloring Book)
Meet the 44 American presidents in this finely-rendered Dover history coloring book.
National Parks Coloring Book (Dover Nature Coloring Book)
Visit 50 US national parks, from the Grand Canyon, to Mammoth Cave, to the Petrified Forest.
Western Pioneers Coloring Book (Dover History Coloring Book)
Learn about the earliest explorations into the west from this Dover coloring book with 36 illustrations.
Castles of the World Coloring Book (Dover History Coloring Book)
Learn about 31 different castles from all over the world.
Classic Cars of the Fifties (Dover History Coloring Book)
Explore the most popular cars of the 1950s with this history coloring book by Dover.
Fantasy Coloring Books for Adults
Not that into real-world history? Delve into the mythical and magical instead.
Floral Fairies Coloring Book (Dover Coloring Books)
If you love feminine, fantastical illustrations you’ll love these floral fairy designs. This book features 30 illustrations printed on both sides of the page. While the paper is heavier than some coloring books, you will want to avoid markers unless you don’t mind sacrificing the image on the reverse side. Truly beautiful figures in the art nouveau style with intricate borders, but nothing too finely detailed.
Mermaids – Calm Ocean Coloring Collection (Fantasy Art Coloring by Selina) (Volume 2)
This book includes two copies each of 25 illustrations of mermaids for you to color, printed on just one side.
Unicorns Coloring Book (Dover Coloring Books)
Any horse or unicorn fan will love this beautiful Dover coloring book. Tracing the unicorn’s history from prehistoric creatures to modern mythology, each of the 30 illustrations is finely-detailed.
Dragons Coloring Book (Dover Coloring Books)
If you love fantastical creatures, this is the book for you! With page after page of dragons, you are sure to be pleased.
Sea Monsters Coloring Book (Dover Coloring Books)
With gorey maulings and topless sirens, this book is definitely not a kids’ coloring book. Learn about famous sea monsters of yore as you color them in. Thirty detailed illustrations are printed front and back with descriptions in this timeless Dover Coloring Book.
Goddesses Coloring Book (Dover Coloring Books)
Thirty gorgeous illustrations by Marty Noble of goddesses from a wide variety of ancient cultures are accompanied by brief descriptions.
Angels Coloring Book (Dover Coloring Books)
Thirty more of Marty Noble’s gorgeous ladies, this time with beautiful sets of wings, span the pages of this Dover coloring book. I just wish that Dover would print these things single-sided. Still, you can’t beat the price, at under $4!
Fashion Coloring Books for Adults
Fashion coloring books for adults are detailed and let your imagination run wild. Design your own runway lineup or revisit the fashions of the past.
Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge Royal Fashions Coloring Book (Dover Fashion Coloring Book)
Love following the royal family? Thirty illustrations feature the fashions of Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge. This upcoming coloring book will be released in November. (Sorry, no page previews are yet available!) Perfect for the royal baby obsessed colorist who has everything!
I Love My Hair: A Coloring Book of Braids, Coils, and Doodle Dos
Andrea Pippins’ spiraling patterns in this book are absolutely mesmerizing. Other fashion books focus on the clothes, but this coloring book focuses on all-natural hair and beauty, and I’m loving it!
Erté Fashions Coloring Book (Dover Fashion Coloring Book)
You’ll want to make sure you have some fine-tipped markers or sharp pencils to color this one in. This book features 30 exquisitely illustrated adaptations of Erte’s art deco covers for Harper’s Bazaar from the early 20th century.
Creative Haven Japanese Kimono Designs Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
If you love super fine details, you’ll want to pick up this fashion coloring book featuring 30 ornately-patterned kimono-wearing ladies. Creative Haven books are printed on one side and feature perforated pages for easy removal.
Love Japanese coloring books? I have a whole list of them here!
Advanced Style The Coloring Book
Who says fashion is just for youngsters? This book features 30 original drawings adapted from the glamourous gals from street fashion book Advanced Style.
Creative Haven Art Deco Fashions Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
Indulge of your love of art deco with this collection of 30 illustrations of fashions in that style. Single-sided perforated pages.
Fashions of the Roaring Twenties Coloring Book (Dover Coloring Books)
Tom Tierney’s detailed fashions take the Roaring Twenties to new heights. This book features 30 illustrations.
Creative Haven Steampunk Fashions Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
This upcoming title by Marty Noble is already a bestseller on Amazon. Pre-order it now to enjoy this steampunk fashions coloring book as soon as possible.
Fashion Coloring Book Vol. 1
If you’re looking for modern, fashionable freedom, look no further than this book! Fifty-two illustrations are printed on just one side of the page, preventing problems with bleed-through from markers.
Fashions of the First Ladies (Dover Fashion Coloring Book)
Follow the 46 first ladies and their formalwear in chronological order from Martha Washington to Michelle Obama.
Holiday Coloring Books for Adults
Get into the spirit of the season with these festive holiday coloring books. From Halloween to Christmas to the Day of the Dead, there’s a time-appropriate coloring book you can break out year after year – or whenever you are looking for a little pick me up!
I’ve also put together a separate list of Halloween coloring books you can see here!
ChristmasScapes (Dover Holiday Coloring Book)
I love the Dover Coloring Book “Scapes” series, and none is more festive than this one! Enjoy hours of fun coloring in thirty seasonally-appropriate scenes from a pile of Christmas presents, a variety of candy, a sea of Santas, Christmas cookies, and more. Each page also features a decorative border.
Creative Haven WinterScapes Coloring Book (Creative Haven Coloring Books)
If you like the repeating patterns of ChristmasScapes but are looking for less specific imagery, WinterScapes is the book for you. It features repeating pattersn of hot cocoa, snowflakes, birds, and wolves. As a Creative Haven book, it improves upon the earlier book by also having images printed on just one side of the page.
Coloring Books for Grownups: Dia de los Muertos
If you love patterned sugar skulls, you’re in for a treat. With 50 skulls to color, you can let your imagination run wild and pick whatever color calls out to you.
HalloweenScapes (Dover Holiday Coloring Book)
By the same illustrator as ChristmasScapes, this book features 30 scenes ranging from pumpkins to witches to candy. I also featured this book in my Halloween coloring books list.
Funny Coloring Books for Adults
Need a gag gift? Want to make a stressed out friend laugh? Give him or her one of these humorous coloring books.
Just Add Color: Circus: 30 Original Illustrations To Color, Customize, and Hang
You’ll love these 30 unique and detailed circus scenes from the Just Add Color collection of coloring books. Designs are printed on just one side and are easy to separate from the book.
Hipster Coloring Book (Design Originals)
Did you like adult coloring books before they were cool? Then you might be a hipster. Why not get this book by Thaneeya McArdle to celebrate?
The 1990s Coloring Book: All That and a Box of Crayons (Psych! Crayons Not Included.)
Celebrate the 90s with a healthy dose of nostalgia. From slap bracelets to Seinfeld to ring pops to Tamagotchi, relive the glory of this decade with this coloring book.
Unicorns Are Jerks: a coloring book exposing the cold, hard, sparkly truth
This hilarious coloring book about the dark side of unicorns makes a great gag gift.
Color Me Drunk: A Drinking and Drawing Activity Book
Get your beer goggles ready. This activity and coloring book is great for a night in with some friends as it, literally, invites you to color it in drunk. Be sure to color responsibly!
Fat Ladies in Spaaaaace: a body-positive coloring book
Celebrate bodies of all shapes and sizes with this body-positive, comic-book-style coloring book. Enjoy these 18 fat sci fi ladies.
Grumpy Cat Coloring Book
I colored once. It was awful.
Special Coloring Books for Adults
These coloring books have something a little unique about them, detailed below.
Coloring Book for Adults: Stress Relieving Stained Glass
This coloring book is unique in that each scene is made up of tiles like a stained glass window. Shade the patches to your heart’s content and enjoy dozens of designs printed on one side of medium weight paper.
Color Therapy: An Anti-Stress Coloring Book
Color Therapy comes with richly hued backgrounds already filled in, and guidance for how to doodle on its pages. A must-have for someone intimidated about coloring or that loves fanciful designs. 117 heavy weight pages divided into 7 color sections.
Creative Therapy: An Anti-Stress Coloring Book
Another 124 pages of front and back artwork to color, with backgrounds and some other elements pre-filled with rich colors.
The Best Colored Pencils, Markers, & Other Drawing Supplies for Adult Coloring Books
When you decide to start coloring, you’ll want to choose what to color with. Many people choose colored pencils. Sure, you could use dollar store colored pencils – but you may find you are pressing a lot harder to deposit the color than if you splurged a little on a higher quality set of pencils. This may not matter to some, but if you sit at a desk all day and have some wrist pain from carpal tunnel – or you’ve been outright diagnosed – you’ll want to get a nicer, softer set.
(Are you suffering from pain while coloring? There may be some quick, simple fixes you can make to make coloring less painful — click here to read more about them!)
The more expensive “art” colored pencils are softer because they contain more pigment, which in turn requires you to press less hard to get that deep hue you’re going for on the page. I personally prefer the brand Caran D’Ache, but many people swear by their Prismacolors. These high-quality pencils make it easy to blend your own colors, so a set with a few dozen pencils should be perfectly adequate. However, if you want to splurge a little and get a set with over 100, why not? It’s still cheaper than therapy.
Caran D’Ache Colored Pencils
Prismacolor Colored Pencils
Sargent Colored Pencils
If you’re just getting into coloring and want a reasonably sized set for not a lot of money, Sargent has a decent pack of 50 to get you started. They won’t have as creamy a consistency as the sets above, but I’ve seen them widely recommended as an inexpensive alternative to the sets above.
Sargent Art 22-7251 50-Count Assorted Colored Pencils
Colored Pencils Accessories
Don’t forget to pick up a pencil sharpener and an eraser! A colorless blender pencil is ideal for blending and softening the edges of your colored pencil coloring. And the colored pencil accessory kit includes everything you might want to accessorize your colored pencils, including a pencil extender. A pencil extender is essential for getting more use out of your shorter, more used-up pencils without cramping your hand!
Maybe you really want to go back to the days of childhood with a set of crayons. Hey, I’m not judging you! Crayons may be a little too wide for some of the most intricate options below, but it can really be therapeutic to just get that color down and not worry too much about the lines.
Prismacolor Art Markers
Some people swear by pens and markers for their coloring; they pretty much require that you don’t press hard (good for my fellow carpal tunnel syndrome sufferers!) and you get that really BOLD color you have been desiring. Just make sure to test a small area in the front of the book first – some coloring books’ pages are too thin to handle ink. Here are some of the best pens and markers – and gel pens for detail work! Less expensive than the professional-quality Copic markers and still quite beautiful, these art markers are double-ended, with a fat side for larger areas and a fine side for detail work. These markers are an oilier consistency than cheap markers, which means that when you overlap they don’t double over the color as noticeably.
Staedtler Triplus Fineliners
I am addicted to these gorgeous pens, which come in a convenient stand-up case and have a unique triangular body that makes them easy and ergonomic to hold. They have a super fine tip that is perfect for detail work. Even better, if you forget to cap them, a unique feature keeps them from drying up for days.
Staedtler Triplus Colors
Staedtler Triplus Color Fiber Tip Pens
Gelly Roll Gel Pens
Great for adding precise details over top of colored pencil or marker, gel pens are a fun opportunity to enjoy some 2000s era nostalgia. Buy a small set of black and white for detail work, or splurge on a big pack so you have as many colors as you desire. The Gelly Roll brand seems to consistently outperform other brands.
What’s your favorite thing to color with? If I haven’t got it listed here and you think it’s worth mentioning, please let me know in the comments!
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CC photos by Lea Latumahina & Julie Rybarczyk
All coloring book covers and sample pages belong to their rightful owners.