Purple Now Stands for Migraine and Headache

Usually, when I write here about Migraine disease, I’m fairly serious. Today, I’m still fairly serious, but it’s a different kind of serious. It’s a really fun and happy serious.

Since I first started working as a patient educator and advocate 12 years ago, people with Migraines have been asking to have a color to stand for Migraine awareness, We’ve wanted to be able to reach into our closets and pull out something to wear that was the color to show support, wear one of those silicone wristbands, tack a ribbon or a pin on our lapels, and do all kinds of things that people with other diseases and conditions do to show support, stand up for ourselves and each other, and … well, I’m sure you follow me here.

Purple for Migraine AwarenessBut there wasn’t a color that was recognized to stand for Migraine awareness, or awareness of cluster headaches or any other headache disorder, for that matter. Nothing. What were we? Orphans? It felt that way, didn’t it?

One of the problems is that there are several nonprofit organizations that represent us. None of them had ever chosen a color to stand for awareness, and they all use different signature colors in their logos and on their web sites. Plus, with several different organizations, none of them could really choose a color for everyone.

Today, I’m beyond pleased to be able to announce that we can now consider purple to be the “official” awareness color for Migraine disease, cluster headaches, and all other headache disorders. Yes, it’s true, finally!

Acting for all of us, I went to the major nonprofit organizations and asked them all to accept purple as our awareness color. Here are the reasons, I asked them to accept purple:

  1. In 2004, a group of Migraineurs had an awareness project selling purple silicone wristbands, the profits from which went to MAGNUM.
  2. On Facebook, Catherine Charrett-Dykes has been working to promote chronic Migraine awareness with a ribbon she created. It’s a purple ribbon with a red stripe.

The following nonprofit organizations agreed and have endorsed purple as the awareness color for Migraine and all headache disorders:

  • The American Headache Society (AHS)
  • Clusterbusters
  • MAGNUM (The National Migraine Association)
  • The Migraine Research Foundation (MRF)
  • The National Headache Foundation (NHF)
  • O.U.C.H (The Organization for Understanding Cluster Headache)
  • The PFO Research Foundation

Purple, purple, purple!

Some of you are going to ask where you can get wristbands, bracelets, pins, and more. Please be patient. This just happened, and they’re not yet available, but they will be soon. As items become available, I’ll post and update you, I promise!

In the meantime…

If you have a Facebook page and would like to add a purple ribbon to your profile picture, you can do so through PicBadges where Ellen and I already have set it up for you so it’s easy.

A new web site has been launched to promote Migraine and headache awareness, FightingHeadacheDisorders.com. The site is also new and just getting started, so you can expect more to be added to it on a regular basis. Ellen and I are both working on this, and we’ll be doing our best to make the site a resource for all things purple and Migraine aware.

I hope you’re as happy and excited about this as we are!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Migraine.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

View Comments (27)
  • Janene Zielinski
    7 years ago

    I wore the purple ribbon and people asked me if I was a domestic abuse survivor. I guess that purple ribbon is pretty well known for that so don’t let it surprise you.

  • Jenifer Berry Franklin
    7 years ago

    Are any of the ribbons or bracelets available yet?

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Jenifer Berry Franklin pantone 814 2X looks pretty close.

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Jenifer Berry Franklin, have you seen this conversion site? http://www.netfront.fr/Services/rgb2pantone/

  • Jenifer Berry Franklin
    7 years ago

    Ok. The numbers you gave me are converting to more lavender so I am going to pick a PMS color that is more grape.

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Jenifer Berry Franklin oops, more grape.

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Jenifer Berry Franklin, definitely more purple.

  • Jenifer Berry Franklin
    7 years ago

    Would you say your purple is more grape or lavender? I am trying to have the RGB color converted and want to know what direction you were going.

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Jenifer Berry Franklin, I’ve been working with RGB colors so far 108/39/182. #6C27B6. I’m sure that if you have that info, someone can convert it for you. Yes, do keep me posted on what you’re doing, please. You can friend me on FB or email me through that web site. Cat has done a great job using purple with red to represent chronic Migraine. The solid purple represents all forms of Migraine as well a other headache disorders. Somewhere down the road, I think the cluster headache organizations may decide to use purple with a stripe of another color, perhaps yellow, to signify cluster headaches specifically, but they haven’t done that yet. At least we finally have purple designated so we can do have an awareness color.

  • Jenifer Berry Franklin
    7 years ago

    Can you give me the cymk color so we can create our own bracelets. We will use the color that has been designated and will let you know what we are working on so you can link to us and we will link to you. This is so important and we want to be ahead of the pack in getting the purple out. We will also use the purple and red but will probably focus on solid purple. Thanks.

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Jennifer, I can’t guarantee that anyone will do the silicone bracelets or what they’ll do for that matter. We have the color, now it’s a matter of seeing what the various Migraine and headache organizations decide to do with it. FightingHeadacheDisorders.com was set up to promote use of the color and, as much as possible, link to any campaigns that the organizations do.

  • Jenifer Berry Franklin
    7 years ago

    I would like both so when you have ribbons and silicone bracelets available let me know as soon as they are. Thanks.

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Jenifer Berry Franklin, the purple and red ribbon, which specifically represents chronic Migraine, is available through Cat Charrett-Dykes. You can contact her through her Facebook page. Just keep in mind that it’s specifically for chronic Migraine. If you’re ever looking for purple items for Migraine in general, get in touch with me. I can point you toward a wholesaler.

  • Jenifer Berry Franklin
    7 years ago

    Thanks Teri. I work for a migraine company and we are trying to purchase something at cost for our patients. Is there anywhere to buy the purple and red ribbon?

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    There’s a link for some car magnets and a few other items on http://www.fightingheadachedisorders.com. It’s going to take a bit longer for the nonprofit groups to get going with this, but as they do, there will be links on that site.

  • Catherine Charrett-Dykes
    7 years ago

    it really is great to have such solidarity…..thank you for all your hard work over the years, we definitely need people like you and Ellen…. I would love to be more active but suffering from chronic migraine keeps me home bound, cave bound most of the time……running support the groups on facebook for chronic migraine awareness has been very helpful to others as well as myself, but there is so much more that needs to be done….it is just a drop in the bucket……..it has been incredible to see the ribbon I created being tattooed! the need for understanding is so wanted that people have been moved to put it on their bodies and something you can’t miss……they are happy to have a chance to educate and to let people know it isn’t just a headache! so thank you for laying all the ground work……i really look forward to the day we won’t need the ribbons at all.

  • Catherine Charrett-Dykes
    7 years ago

    i can’t take credit for all of it…..i found that there wasn’t much for us, just like when Teri got started …..just doing what needs to be done….but thank you ladies for your support!!!!…it means the world to me

  • Jackie Foxman
    7 years ago

    Cat w/o you us “chronics” would have no place to call home! Even t/ your cave bound, what you have achieved is a huge accomplishment & something to be very proud of!!

  • Tracy Plant
    7 years ago

    Cat, bringing us all together is a pretty massive achievement so be proud. U do loads xx

  • Steph Moreno
    7 years ago

    Glad ta hear of all the good things happening with this, but deleting so many from your friends list doesn’t really help things much. I thought we were all in this together…oh well, not tryin’ ta step on anyones’s toes but it is a little frustrating ta say the least when there are so many of us out there that suffer from this disease/condition. Being a chronic migraine sufferer myself is frustrating enough as is is so this just adds to it. Sorry if this offends anyone but just telling it exactly how it is that I feel!

  • Linda Castellano
    7 years ago

    Looking forward to the new FightingHeadacheDisorder.com and I love the purple ribbon power for migraine sufferers. Thanks for all that you do, you have no idea how much I need all the info you provide.

  • Teri Robert
    7 years ago

    Linda, I’m sorry not to have seen this and replied sooner! Check out the web site any time. There’s some info on it now, and we’ll keep adding to it. You’re very welcome for anything that any of us can do for you. We’re all in this together, and the best thing we can do is keep holding each other up. <3

  • Cindi Moyer
    7 years ago

    I thought the LGBT community took the rainbow? Whatever… I’ll make the new purple with red stripe work on my page.

  • Catherine Charrett-Dykes
    7 years ago

    we have a support group too if you would like to join…send me an email on fb and i can give you the link

  • Ray Gwyn Smith
    7 years ago

    Good idea. Though remember that purple has already been claimed,( including purple ribbons I believe) as showing support for gay rights. I’m sure there are many gays with migraine, but it could cause confusion.

  • Catherine Charrett-Dykes
    7 years ago

    yes ray, most of the colors have been claimed and burgundy is claimed for headaches and migraines at one pt…idk what yr that one was established…..the reason for my creating the cma ribbon was to add the stripe so it would stand out …the ones like the rainbow, or puzzle piece ones stick out because they are different …….now w/purple as the base color the other groups can color their stripe to their group and hopefully people will see how many people are affected by it…….when i created the cma ribbon i chose the purple for the chronic pain we are always in…..the burgundy didn’t look as nice w/the purple so i picked red as an homage to original ………….i had consulted Teri and she said that she had been trying to get purple as the official color so keeping the burgundy didn’t seem that important

  • Marianne Connolly
    7 years ago

    Hmmmm. I get migraines too and appreciate support, but for me, purple always has a strong, positive association with LGBT rights. Ray, I’ve seen purple ribbons too, including purple ribbon bumper stickers.

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