Remember how stoked you’d get on the scent of Crayolas, or how happy cracking open a brand-new coloring book could make you feel? Well, it’s time to revisit this pastime of yore. Whether you want to indulge your OCD tendencies by penciling in a complex pattern, or simply zone out for a bit with a meditative marker sesh, there are now tons of coloring books out there designed for adults to enjoy. Dawn Finley, who hosts a monthly coloring event at the Women’s Center for Creative Work in Los Angeles, shared 5 of her favorite titles for tinting, and we added a couple of our own.




For the methodical and detail-oriented: Lost Ocean features intensely intricate designs by Johanna Basford based on the natural world. ($10.17,



For the out and proud: Artist Jacinta Bunnell collaborated with illustrator Leela Corman on the good-humored, The Big Gay Alphabet Coloring Book. ($12.95,



For the city-dweller, architect, or graphic artist:The stylish design enthusiast will love Just Add Color: Mid-Century Modern Mania, one from a series by artist Jenn Ski. ($10.85,




For the spiritual or meditative: There’s a huge variety of books out there based on mandala designs. The 2016 Coloring Calendar by Jenean Morrison is an excellent choice. ($31.49,




For the fierce feminist: Ijeoma Oluo’s The Badass Feminist Coloring Book: A Colorful Celebration of Modern-Day, Intersectional Feminism, features portraits of and quotations from—who else?—badass feminists. ($20,



For alt-comic lovers and goths: This Dame Darcy Variety Pack pick comes straight from the BUST staff, ’cause if we can’t live in Darcy’s dark whimsical world, we at least want to color it. ($20,




For the tri-curious: Here’s another pick we couldn’t resist — Color Her: A Mix ’n Match Coloring Book, from a Canadian creative director and fashion designer. Its exquisite corpse format lets you create your own female hero with options from the modern day to the mythological. ($20,

Top photo: Kate Lacey (Lost Ocean Spread)


This originally appeared in the December/January 2016 print edition of BUST Magazine. Subscribe today

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