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What is the color burgundy maroon?

Burgundy and maroon are two dark red shades that are quite similar but have some distinct differences. Both colors originate from red wines, specifically the Burgundy wine from the Burgundy region of France and Portuguese wines which were known as “maroons” in the 17th century. In this article, we’ll explore the history and meaning behind these classic wine-inspired colors, how they’re defined, used, and differentiated from one another.

The History of Burgundy and Maroon

As mentioned, burgundy gets its name from the Burgundy wine region in eastern France which produces iconic red and white wines. The name “burgundy” was first used in the 15th century to describe cloth dyed with burgundy wine. By the 18th century, the name became synonymous with a deep red color similar to the red wines produced in Burgundy.

Maroon has a similar origin story, though its history can be traced back slightly earlier. In the 17th century, the name “maroon” was used to describe dark red wines shipped from Portugal. As early as 1648, the name was being used outside of the wine world to refer to a reddish-brown or dark red color. Maroon became closely associated with brownish variations of red.

Defining Burgundy and Maroon Colors

Though both are dark reds, burgundy and maroon have some subtle differences:


  • Has a bright, rich, red tone leaning slightly toward purple
  • Slightly lighter and brighter than maroon
  • May include subtle blue undertones
  • Closely mimics color of Burgundy wines


  • Dark reddish-brown color
  • Slightly darker, duller, and browner than burgundy
  • May include subtle yellow undertones
  • Closer to brown than burgundy
Color Hex Code RGB Code
Burgundy #900020 R: 144 G: 0 B: 32
Maroon #800000 R: 128 G: 0 B: 0

As shown in the table above, burgundy has a brighter red RGB code while maroon is darker and duller. Burgundy also typically has a bluer, cooler undertone compared to maroon’s subtle yellow tones.

How Burgundy and Maroon Are Used

Both burgundy and maroon are popular colors used across many contexts, though burgundy tends to be used more commonly. Here are some of the main uses of these wine-inspired shades:


In fashion, burgundy and maroon are commonly used in fall and winter collections, as the darker red hues pair well with other seasonal colors like brown, beige, olive green, and navy. Both shades are seen in clothing across all styles and gender-neutral. Popular examples include:

  • Burgundy dresses and heels
  • Maroon suits and ties
  • Plum, cranberry, oxblood – shades close to burgundy
  • Burgundy and maroon sweaters
  • Scarves and hats

Home Décor

In home décor and interior design, burgundy and maroon work well in traditional, vintage, or romantic styled rooms. They bring a sense of richness and depth as accent colors. Some décor ideas:

  • Burgundy accent wall
  • Maroon rug
  • Burgundy velvet sofa
  • Dark wood furniture
  • Curtains or pillows


Burgundy is used in many logo designs to signify class, elegance, and style. Maroon is seen as a more masculine, corporate color. Brand examples:

  • Burgundy – Louboutin, Harvard University, Holiday Inn
  • Maroon – Adobe, UPS, Arizona State University

Key Differences Between Burgundy vs. Maroon

To recap the main differences:

Burgundy Maroon
Hue Red-purple Brownish dark red
Brightness Brighter Duller
Undertones Blue Yellow
Uses High fashion, elegant décor Masculine, corporate branding

Burgundy generally has a brighter, purple-reddish color compared to the more brownish, muted maroon. Burgundy also comes across as more elegant and feminine while maroon is more rugged and masculine.

Tips for Decorating With Burgundy and Maroon

Ready to use these regal wine reds in your home? Here are some tips for decorating with burgundy and maroon:

Choose the Right Undertones

Look at undertones of existing elements like wood finishes or metals. Complementary cool blues in burgundy pair well with silver and grays. Warm yellow maroon matches better with gold and beige.

Use as an Accent

Burgundy and maroon work beautifully as accents against neutral backdrops. Use them in key furniture pieces, accent walls, artwork, or decorative items.

Add Metallic Touches

The richness of burgundy and maroon looks stunning with metallic finishes like brass, copper or gold. Add metallics through lighting fixtures, hardware, decor items.

Layer Textiles

Use textiles like pillows, throws, curtains and rugs to create layered richness. Select textures like velvet, linen and faux fur to make the colors pop.

Create Contrast

Prevent overwhelming darkness by contrasting with light woods, off-whites, creams or patterns. Key is balancing the deep colors to keep the space feeling cozy and bright.


Burgundy and maroon are both elegant, stylish shades of dark red that add a sense of richness and depth wherever used. Burgundy leans more toward the purple end of the red family, while maroon is closer to brown. Burgundy reads as more feminine, stylish and elegant. Maroon is more masculine, vintage, and corporate. Both work beautifully in fashion, décor, and branding when used properly. The best way to decorate with these colors is by balancing them with light and dark contrast, metallics, and accent textures for a luxe, welcoming aesthetic.