Skip to Content

What does the purple and blue ribbon mean?

The purple and blue ribbon has become a widely recognized symbol for several different causes and conditions. This two-toned ribbon combines the color purple, which is often associated with nobility, spirituality, and imagination, with the color blue, which represents openness, wisdom, and truth. Together, these colored ribbons advocate for specific issues while also promoting hope, strength, and unity.

Alzheimer’s Disease

One of the most common uses of the purple and blue ribbon is to raise awareness for Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s is a progressive neurological disorder that destroys memory and thinking skills over time. The disease currently affects over 6 million Americans, with that number projected to rise dramatically as the population ages. Wearing an Alzheimer’s purple and blue ribbon shows support for those living with the disease and honors those who have passed away. The purple signifies the mystery surrounding Alzheimer’s disease while the blue represents the peace that comes from increasing understanding of this condition. This colored ribbon began being used for Alzheimer’s advocacy in the 1990s.

Pancreatic Cancer

Another condition represented by the purple and blue awareness ribbon is pancreatic cancer. This is an aggressive and difficult to detect form of cancer affecting the pancreas. Pancreatic cancer accounts for about 3% of all cancers but is currently the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States for both men and women. The overall five-year survival rate is just 11%, highlighting the urgent need for increased research, screening tools, and effective treatments. The purple and blue colors of this ribbon promote pancreatic cancer awareness during November, which is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month. The purple signifies the courage and perseverance of those fighting this disease while the blue represents hope for the future.

Domestic Violence

The purple and blue ribbon is also used to raise awareness regarding domestic violence. This issue encompasses physical, emotional, verbal, or sexual abuse inflicted by an intimate partner or someone in the home. Domestic violence affects people of all genders, ages, races, religions, and economic backgrounds. However, women are disproportionately impacted. Wearing the purple and blue domestic violence awareness ribbon shows support for victims and spotlights the need for broader societal changes. The purple symbolizes the pain and suffering caused by domestic abuse while the blue represents the resilience of survivors. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

Bullying Prevention

The purple and blue ribbon has also become a sign of bullying prevention. Bullying entails unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children involving a real or perceived imbalance of power. This can take the form of physical, verbal, relational, and cyberbullying. Bullied students are at higher risk for mental health issues, poor academic performance, and suicidal ideation. The purple and blue anti-bullying ribbon promotes safe, supportive school environments for all. The purple embodies self-esteem and individuality while the blue represents harmony and mutual respect. October is National Bullying Prevention Month.

Epilepsy Awareness

Furthermore, the purple and blue ribbon represents epilepsy awareness. Epilepsy encompasses a spectrum of chronic neurological disorders marked by recurrent, unprovoked seizures. It affects around 3 million adults and 470,000 children in the U.S. Wearing a purple and blue epilepsy awareness ribbon helps fight stigma and shows support for increased research and access to treatment. The purple embodies the uniqueness of each person living with seizures while the blue promotes hope for new medical advancements. November is National Epilepsy Awareness Month.

Cystic Fibrosis

The purple and blue ribbon is also a symbol for cystic fibrosis (CF) awareness. This life-threatening genetic disorder damages the lungs and digestive system by causing a buildup of thick mucus. While treatments allow CF patients to live longer, there is currently no cure. Wearing a purple and blue CF awareness ribbon helps raise funds for research and shows solidarity with the over 30,000 Americans affected. The purple represents the tenacity and endurance of those with CF while the blue symbolizes the life-giving air they fight for every day. May is National Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Month.

Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia

Furthermore, the purple and blue ribbon represents congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) awareness. CDH is a birth defect where the diaphragm does not fully form, allowing abdominal organs to push into the chest cavity. This underdeveloped lung and respiratory issue requires intensive medical intervention. The purple and blue CDH awareness ribbon supports babies fighting for their lives in the NICU while also promoting research into what causes this devastating condition. Purple embodies the fragility of CDH infants while blue represents the strength of survivors and angel families.

Child Abuse Prevention

The purple and blue ribbon also symbolizes child abuse prevention. Tragically, millions of children endure abuse and neglect each year at the hands of parents or caregivers. Increased awareness and community support can help safeguard vulnerable kids. Wearing a purple and blue child abuse prevention ribbon shows compassion for innocent victims. The purple honors the memory of those lost too soon while the blue inspires hope that this cycle of violence can end. April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month.


Furthermore, the purple and blue ribbon represents hydranencephaly awareness. This extremely rare condition occurs when the brain’s cerebral hemispheres are absent and replaced with sacs filled with cerebrospinal fluid. There is no known cause or cure. Most infants with hydranencephaly do not survive past their first year. The purple and blue hydranencephaly awareness ribbon comforts grieving families and celebrates the brief but meaningful lives of these special children. Purple symbolizes their eternal spirit while blue represents their innocence.

LEAD Poisoning Prevention

The purple and blue ribbon is also used to promote lead poisoning prevention. Lead exposure can damage the nervous system, kidneys, and other organs. Young children are especially vulnerable. Wearing a purple and blue LEAD awareness ribbon helps spread the word about properly identifying and removing lead-based paint hazards. The purple signifies the toxicity of lead while the blue represents the clean water all communities deserve. October 24 is National Lead Poisoning Prevention Day.

Other Causes

Additionally, the purple and blue awareness ribbon has been used for various other health conditions and causes including:

  • Compassion and kindness
  • Infant loss
  • Premature birth
  • Addiction recovery
  • Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)
  • Dwarfism awareness
  • Paul Dini Will Eisner Comic Industry Person of the Year Award

The blended purple and blue ribbon encompasses many important issues. This meaningful combination of colors provides hope, strength, wisdom, imagination, and spirituality to many noble causes.


In summary, the purple and blue awareness ribbon has a variety of significant meanings. While each cause may be unique, they all represent the shared principles of compassion, community, and positive change. Wearing the purple and blue ribbon is a simple way to visually demonstrate your support for critical health and social justice issues. The blend of purple’s vibrancy and blue’s tranquility creates an eye-catching symbolic combination. Whether you are spreading awareness, honoring survivors, or memorializing lost loved ones, the purple and blue ribbon acts as a meaningful representation of both struggle and hope.

Cause Month Purple Meaning Blue Meaning
Alzheimer’s Disease November Mystery Peace
Pancreatic Cancer November Courage Hope
Domestic Violence October Pain Resilience