Adult coloring is excellent for physical and mental health, especially when you use mandala coloring books.
Sanskrit for circle, “mandalas” feature radial and bilateral design symmetry.
For some, they’re artistic representations of the cosmos and other spiritual ideas.
For others, they’re just pretty patterns.
Wherever you fall, mandala coloring for adults can be a highly effective tool in your de-stressing arsenal.
We’ll explain it all below.
Plus, our team curated a list of the top 35 mandala coloring books for adults.
Why is Coloring Mandalas So Relaxing?
Scientists have definitively proved that meditation and yoga are great for physical and mental health — and so is mandala coloring.
Many adults doubt that coloring will enhance their life, but those who try it are frequently shocked at how great it makes them feel.
So the burning question becomes: Why is coloring mandalas so relaxing?
- Loosens the Amygdala: The amygdala is the brain’s fear center. Low-stakes, detail-oriented activities relax it, which releases feel-good chemicals and cuts down on the number of stress hormones coursing through the veins.
- Boosts Creativity: Our brains love creativity. They crave it. And when we feed them with creative activities, they reward us by calming the nervous system. Therapists recommend using colors that appeal to you at any given moment.
- Prioritizes the Present: Coloring mandalas requires presence. Whether we realize it or not, it does take concentration to pick the colors, decide on a pattern, and stay within the lines. While working, your brain doesn’t have the wherewithal to catastrophize about the past or future. Essentially, coloring is a rumination break.
- Relieves Stress: Since coloring affords so many brain-soothing benefits, it relieves stress — and when we’re free of stress, we’re more relaxed.
- Promotes Unity: Mandalas are about unity and wholeness, and specific designs may enchant you into blissful states. Wading in a sea of bliss qualifies as highly relaxing.
What Are the Benefits of Mandala Coloring?
The list of mandala coloring benefits is impressive, covering everything from improved cognitive abilities to significant mood enhancement.
- Exercises Both Brain Hemispheres: Michal Beaucaire, a self-improvement expert, once talked about how mandala work is a terrific exercise for the brain. “We logically think and analyze using our brain’s left side,” he explained. “The brain’s right side processes imaging, associations, and connections to feelings.”
- Improves Motor Skills: Adult coloring works your motor skills, which diminish with age. Keep your senses sharp by tackling one mandala coloring project per week.
- Leads to Better Sleep: Mandala coloring at night makes getting to bed easier. Why? The light that emanates from digital devices reduces the production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Spending the last 30 minutes before bed away from your phone, computers, tablets, and TVs will increase your melatonin counts, leading to better sleep quality.
- Lengthen Attention Span: Coloring trains the brain to focus, but it’s not a stressful activity — thus allowing the frontal lobe to stretch. Why is that good? The frontal lobe controls your organizing and problem-solving centers, which enhances one’s ability to concentrate intensely.
- Boost Attention to Detail: Artistic work, no matter how simple, helps exercise detail-orientation muscles.
Additionally, several clinical studies suggest that working with mandalas can “boost the immune system, reduce stress and pain, lower blood pressure, [and] ease depression.”
35 Of The Best Mandala Coloring Books for Adults
What are the best mandala adult coloring books? There’s something out there for everyone. Below, we break down our 35 favorites.
The Amazing Patterns Adult Coloring Book — Produced by Coloring Book Kim — is a popular option for beginners. It has a variety of designs, and the paper quality is excellent for the price. Special care was taken to include designs that promote relaxation.
Big Pro: Can use markers or pencils
Possible Con: No bleed border
Jade Summer’s 100 Amazing Patterns is another good option for folks trying adult coloring for the first time. The designs are a bit bigger than other options, which may be good for someone with diminished fine motor skills.
Big Pro: One-sided pages with blacked-out backs
Possible Cons: Flower patterns dominate; mid-grade paper isn’t the best for markers
This one is for all you cynophiles out there. Mutts and mandalas — what could top that!? The pictures contain a wide variety of breeds — even you Great Dane and Doberman fanciers get some representation in this adult coloring book by Blush Design. (Don’t worry, cat parents; we’ve got you covered below.)
Big Pro: DOGGIES!
Possible Cons: No westies; mid-grade paper that’s not ideal for markers
Not only is the Secret Garden adult coloring book super intricate, but it also features hidden gems and mazes to solve. This option is ideal for people who want to stretch their frontal lobes to full capacity.
Big Pro: Works the brain well
Possible Con: Some pages have instructions to add elements
Scratch-art is the other side of the coloring coin. Instead of coloring in, you scratch off a layer of ink to reveal the colors below. This option is excellent for people in search of a nighttime mandala activity. Plus, it’s hardcover so you can work in bed.
Big Pro: Designs promote a meditative state
Possible Con: A tad more expensive than other options
This color-by-number option is fun. And remember, you can assign different hues to the numbers than what they suggest, but the numbers help you create balanced pieces.
Big Pro: A leg up on color choice
Possible Con: The numbers are dark and peek through
Celtic and mandala patterns go hand-in-hand and are both great for coloring. This book incorporates the two traditions and features 31 designs.
Big Pro: The patterns are unique
Possible Con: It only has 31 designs
If you’re one of the millions of people on this planet that doesn’t have an innate sense of style and design, this color-by-number option may be right up your alley.
Big Pro: Diverse patterns, clearly defined lines
Possible Con: Not all the designs are mandalas.
This adult coloring book isn’t exclusive to mandalas. In fact, most of the pictures have a nature theme. But the required motor skills are the same, and you’ll still enjoy the stress relief.
Big Pro: A break from mandalas
Possible Con: It’s a color-by-number book
This beautiful adult coloring book focuses on anti-anxiety patterns, and many feature natural scenes, including gardens, botanicals, landscapes, and flowers. All the pages are one-sided, and the book boasts over 100 designs.
Big Pro: Great quality paper for the price
Possible Con: Some people find the pictures too busy
This mandala adult coloring book is for tried-and-true mandala fans. Be sure to wear your concentration cap for this one! It comes with a color guide you can choose to use or not.
Big Pro: Advanced mandalas
Possible Con: Advanced mandalas
This high-resolution mandala coloring book is fit for experienced artists. If you know how to shade, this collection has many fabulous designs to practice your skills.
Big Pro: Great quality and intricate designs
Possible Con: May be too difficult for some folks
Some people love this book — others find elements a bit too juvenile. It features 31 designs, and its focus is calming.
Big Pro: Lots of sun designs
Possible Con: Must be careful with the perforated pages
Want something a tad more complicated? This connect-the-dots mandala workbook adds another creative element into the mix. Notably, all the designs were hand-drawn.
Big Pro: Enhanced mental workout
Possible Con: May be frustrating for someone with reduced motor skills
Easy Mandalas by Samantha Moore is ideal for people with impaired vision and beginners. It’s the perfect “first adult coloring book.” It’s got 68 designs, and the pages are one-sided for optimal ease.
Big Pro: Super option for folks with diminished motor skills
Possible Con: May be too easy for advanced hobbyists
Flower Mandala is another beginner option that made our list. It contains 100 designs ideal for individuals who may not have the best eyesight or hand coordination. Plus, it’s also suitable for youngsters interested in art and drawing.
Big Pro: Good adult coloring book for beginners
Possible Con: Some folks find the designs a little too childlike
As the name suggests, Special Art’s 125 Mandalas Color Book for Adults includes 125 mandala designs. It’s book four of a six-part collection, but this one made our list because it’s suitable for all skill levels.
Big Pro: Quality, one-sided paper
Potential Con: Pages aren’t perforated
18. Flower Mandalas Coloring Book (Design Originals) 30 Beginner-Friendly & Relaxing Floral Art Activities
This flower mandala option is marketed as a beginner option, but we’d categorize it as an intermediate choice. If we were using ski analogies, it would be a blue square. The book contains 30 designs.
Big Pro: Super thick paper
Possible Con: A tad more expensive than other options
Break out the magnifying glass! This adult mandala coloring book featuring 50 designs requires attention to detail. However, the designs are specifically calibrated to relieve stress. Opt for a hardcover or paperback.
Big Pro: High-quality, one-sided pages
Possible Con: May be too difficult for some
Do you have a dispatcher in your life? They’re the heroes that help keep us calm in emergencies. So treat one to this mandala adult coloring book made especially for dispatchers.
Big Pro: It’s a fun gift for a niche demographic
Possible Con: You may have to educate your beloved dispatcher about the benefits of adult coloring
This adult coloring book for stress relief and relaxation uses 60-pound paper stock and features 150 original mandala designs. The book features several mandala types, including stained glass mandalas, ethnic mandalas, sand mandalas, gemstone mandalas, and Greek mandalas. Plus, several designs are inspired by natural fractals.
Big Pros: Great paper and a diverse set of designs
Possible Con: Too much white space
This Easter-themed coloring book features patterned pictures of things traditionally associated with the holiday. It contains 35 designs for various skill levels.
Big Pro: Can easily frame pieces because of the pages’ large “bleed” areas
Possible Con: Not all designs are strictly mandalas
This is one of the best bangs for the price in the realm of mandala coloring books for adults. Each design features either a sun or moon surrounded by stars with mandala-esque elements.
Big Pro: Budget-friendly price
Potential Con: Some designs aren’t for everyone
Sugar skulls are rooted in the Mexican tradition of El Dia de Los Muertos — a day to honor ancestors who’ve passed. The heads represent loved ones, which is why they’re lovingly decorated. Some of the designs in this book feature mandalas; others are just intricate patterns.
Big Pro: Celebrates a family-centric cultural tradition
Possible Con: Not strictly a mandala coloring book
This mandala coloring book features 100 designs aimed at diminishing stress. The pages are one-sided and blacked out to reduce color smudges. The book bills itself as a collection of “complex” mandalas. In reality, there’s a variety, and options abound for days when you feel like doing an “easy” one.
Big Pro: Great designs
Possible Con: Not enough advanced designs
You’ll likely enjoy this coloring book if you’re a fan of horoscopes and astrology. It also includes a few bonus pictures from the company’s other adult coloring options.
Big Pro: Paper is thick enough to use markers, gels, and watercolors
Possible Con: Only has 25 designs
Simple Mandalas is an excellent option with which to start. It’s also great for people who may be looking for less-detailed designs.
Big Pro: Larger designs (for people interested in more open patterns; ideal for people with reduced motor skills)
Possible Con: Larger designs (for people who enjoy uber-detailed mandalas)
If you’re after volume, this adult coloring book is for you. It contains over 300 designs created by Sally Berry and includes patterns for all levels. Some designs are easy, and others are for advanced coloring enthusiasts.
This adult mandala coloring book has 104 designs. The designs are good for learning and practicing shading. This is for coloring aficionados who are at the intermediate level and up.
Big Pro: Advanced designs
Potential Con: Some find the pictures too small
This mandala adult coloring book by Ipainting Press includes designs with a cosmic vibe. All of the configurations feature a flower motif.
Big Pro: It’s inexpensive.
Possible Con: Not the highest quality
Cat parents, rejoice! This one is dedicated to our fabulous felines. Scribble away the stress by making beautiful art of the four-pawed deities.
Big Pro: Special Art, the coloring book’s producers, maintain a fun online community of adult coloring enthusiasts.
Possible Con: Some of the designs may be a little “kiddie” for advanced artists.
32. Mandella Coloring Book: An Adult Coloring Book Featuring 100 pages of the Most Beautiful Mandalas
Drift off into a state of relaxing bliss while working on this mandala adult coloring book. This option is great for minimalists who enjoy a bit of “white space.”
Big Pro: High-quality paper that withstands gels and markers
Possible Con: May not be intricate enough for some
We’ve suggested options for dog and cat lovers; this one is for lovers of animals from around the world. Intricate mandalas are incorporated into all of the design subjects.
Big Pro: Great quality and designs
Possible Con: It’s a little more expensive than other options.
Sophisticated and advanced, the designs in this animal mandala book are stunning. It’s a great gift for animal lovers, and many of the options are suitable for framing.
Big Pro: 150 Gorgeous designs
Possible Con: Some designs have lots of white space
This mandala coloring book is for the experts, the designs are incredibly intricate, and they take a deft hand. This option is a fan favorite and features great-quality paper.
Big Pro: A super option for advanced coloring gurus
Possible Con: Not for people with diminished motor skills
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We hope you found our list of the best mandala coloring books helpful. But most importantly, we hope you enjoy hours of stress-relieving fun.