Difference Between Beige and Tan

By: | Updated: Sep-13, 2022
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There are two terms which you will be most likely to come across in your daily life, and that is ‘beige’ and ‘tan’. Beige is a color which can be easily associated with brown, while tan is a shade of brown that gives a more golden or reddish look. However, the difference between beige and tan has been misunderstood by many people who believe that these two colors are one and the same. There is a difference between these two colors which you should know about.

Summary Table

Beige Tan
Lighter Darker
Mostly used in the color palette of fashion designers and artists Mainly used for home décor purposes
Have an aptitude for being used in old-fashioned homes Have an aptitude for being used in modern homes

Difference Between Beige and Tan

What is Beige?

Beige is an extremely dull shade of yellowish-brown which looks almost white when it has a thin layer of tan applied on it. The word ‘beige’ was first used in French literature as the name for this color in 1712 by Francois Bernier. In its initial form, it was used to describe colors that had more yellow than orange in them and so were referred to as ‘bien pale’ (meaning bright pale).

What is Tan?

Tan is a color that is between brown and beige. It can be described as a yellowish-brown shade which looks more golden than reddish in color. Tan is usually made by mixing other colors with it and adding some black or white to it. The name ‘tan’ was first used in the 18th century by the Scottish painter Henry Raeburn who applied it to the pale yellowish-brown that he had found to be common in many parts of Scotland.

The Similarities Between Beige and Tan

Beige and tan are both colors that are often associated with brown, but there is a slight difference between these two colors. Beige is a shade of brown that has the tendency to be on the lighter side. However, tan is a shade of brown that gives a golden or reddish look. Both these colors are associated with brown, but their shades vary depending on the color that you use to paint them.

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Beige VS Tan

There are many differences between beige and tan which you should know about before going into the details of these two colors. Let us take a look at some of these differences in detail below:

The shade

Beige is a shade of brown that is lighter in color than that of a shade of brown. However, tan is a shade of brown that is darker in color than that of beige. The difference between these two colors lies in the fact that beige is lighter in color than tan.

Use

Beige is mostly used in the color palette of fashion designers and artists. It is used to create the color palette of many different types of clothes and accessories such as shirts, shoes, bags, etc. Tan is mainly used for home décor purposes such as walls, floors, ceilings, curtains, bed sheets and so on. Tan is mainly used for creating the color palette of many different types of homes such as offices, restaurants and shops etc.

Aptitude

Beige has been known to have an aptitude for being used in old-fashioned homes which are filled with traditional décor styles such as paintings, photos etc. Tan on the other hand has been known to have an aptitude for being used in modern homes which are filled with trendy décor styles.

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