The world isn’t black and white. In fact, we often remind ourselves not to see it that way. But sometimes removing color is the best way to find beauty. The classic combo of yin and yang, panda bears and checkerboard tiles, black and white are opposites in harmony and balance.

Psychologically, they’re opposing forces: black is secretive and mysterious; it helps us hide our emotions and insecurities. It represents ultimate power, control, luxury and elegance. When it comes to fashion, it’s still cool to wear black; research has shown that black clothing makes us appear smarter and sexier.

White, on the other hand, is pure, clean and futuristic. It represents innocence, but can sometimes appear cold and sterile. When talking brands, white can present a calm, organized and efficient company. Someone wearing white-on-white in a sea of black can appear amazingly confident.

While black and white have symbolized the struggle between good and evil, light and dark and day and night for centuries, they’re both a powerfully timeless pairing and very modern.

Our eyes like contrast and the dance of opposites. In a world bombarded by color, sometimes the stark difference between light and dark stands out amidst all the noise.