Pantone dubs this Turquoise Color of the Year for 2010. Photo courtesy of Pantone LLC

Move over, mimosa yellow, there's a new hue in town!

Pantone LLC
has just crowned Pantone 15-5519 Turquoise as the Color of the Year for 2010.

The color conjures up everything from the Caribbean Sea to Southwestern jewelry. Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute®, credited its connection to feelings of serenity, protection and luscious escapism.

"Through years of color word-association studies," she said, "we also find that Turquoise represents an escape to many -- taking them to a tropical paradise." And who couldn't use a bit of fantasy these days?

Pantone is a longtime sage of the spectrum. The company creates standardized color palettes used in the design, graphics, cosmetics and fashion industries. Every year, the Color Institute forecasts color trends that tint our everyday lives.

Blue has long been considered America's favorite color. This Turquoise is one of the brightest, cheeriest shades in the family. The current popularity of zingy colors breaks with the old belief that economically rough times call for soft, neutral hues.

Famed creative agency JWT backs this development, too. Ann Mack, JWT's director of trendspotting, predicts: "Saturated carnival colors -- blues, oranges, greens and yellows -- will replace 2009's paler palette; think Cirque du Soleil and 'Alice in Wonderland.'"

Turquoise wasn't chosen on a whim. The Color Institute team travels the world, absorbing colors in all sorts of contexts, studying consumer psychology and hitting trade shows.

In their 2010 and 2011 color-planning reports, they honed in on several blue and green shades. The winning turquoise represents the best of these broader trends.

The pool at the Roosevelt hotel in Los Angeles.

It also appeared in Pantone's fashion-specific 2010 report. While some top fashion designers, like Lanvin's Alber Elbaz, claim that such color predictions influence mass-produced design rather than high-end lines, there's surely a trickle-up effect.

Michelle Obama must approve; the First Lady has worn turquoise to official functions several times, most recently while introducing the White House's holiday decorations.

What's the easiest way for us non-public figures to jump on the trend? Lagoon-hued nail polish, such as those offered by OPI, Essie and KnockOut.