There’s a wide variety of soft lures, and not just because of the different shapes which produce different vibrations. The colours and attractants play their part to maximise the irresistible stimuli which will provoke an attack from a predator. These are the main colours available commercially:



Classic white and yellow

The two iconic colours of the first soft lures are white and yellow. They contrast strongly and are easy to manufacture as they are produced from just one injection of material. They still claim many of the predators and are invaluable, especially in cloudy water.

Yellow Biga one and white Toolik lures

Red head

Some white flexible lures have red heads to suggest blood and encourage the predators to go after them. Among anglers they’re nicknamed “Marlboro”.

Toolik red head

Colouring and marking

Imitating the colouring and marking of certain fish has become important. Principally roach, and especially perch with its zebra stripes, inspire the range of colours available.

Sequins are added to imitate the special glitter of roach and bleak.

Natori Baitfish Cream


In the last few years, brighter colours have become available. Orange, acid green and pink can make all the difference in provoking the predators or when fishing deep water.

Orange Mogami lures

Fashionable darker colours

In contrast to these striking colours, more natural shades are increasingly seen in an angler’s tackle box. Green with black patches, like watermelon, or darker, as in sweetfish, and also brown, are the main types of these darker shades, which seem to be most suitable for clear water and subtle fishing techniques.

Watermelon and Craw lures/Iwaki

For sea fishing

Here, the top colours are blue or pearl-white backs. Marine predators being more aggressive, sea anglers seem happy with a smaller range of colours. Even so, there are still some brighter colours previously developed for clearer water.

Pearl Biga and Mogami dark blue lures


These are usually made from natural concentrates or oils synthesised from sea fish and sometimes prawns.

Addition of attractants has at least two advantages. First, a predator following your lure may be more inclined to bite because of the scent. Second, it will be less likely to spit it out.

Redchart sachet/Iwaki

Some soft lures are sold with attractants in the sachet. Their effectiveness wears off with use. You can recharge them using more resistant sprays or gels.

# Caperlan tip: Refill soft lure sachets with liquid or gel attractant. Check carefully for a watertight seal to avoid evaporation, and above all, to avoid making your tackle box smell…

All the colours have different uses. But first and foremost, it’s your assessment of where you’re fishing and your confidence in a colour that’ll make the difference to your catch.