PMS (or Pantone Matching System) colors are slightly different than CMYK colors because they are mixed before they are applied to a surface. The pure spot color, or PMS color, is a mixed ink that allows for a wider range of reproduced colors than the CMYK spectrum.
A PMS color is a specific numbered color in the Pantone Matching System® used in the graphic arts, printing and other industries to facilitate accurate and consistent color reproduction, especially across multiple production runs, vendors and manufacturing processes.
Get it Right: Benefits and Drawbacks of Printing with Pantone
Color is very subjective, which is why the Pantone Matching System® works so well. It takes all the guesswork out of color identification. Every computer monitor is different, every printer is different. By standardizing the colors, manufacturers and customers in different locations can all refer to the Pantone system to make sure colors match. It is used by many printers and graphic artists to deliver reliable, reproducible colors to their customers. The ink manufacturers who create the base color inks are strictly licensed by Pantone for color accuracy.