How to Style The World's Ugliest Color

‘opaque couché’ 

This little, perhaps slightly unpronounceable word, 'opaque couche' will soon be the new go-to fashion color. Fashion loves nothing more than embracing the ugly, weird, or strange as this season's IT thing and when an article last week wrote that a small study had declared Pantone's #448C as the ugliest color in the world - you can bet all the fashion insiders will be sporting it within months. 

But in fashion, nothing is ever truly new, and the fashion world has actually loved this color long before it's proclamation as ugly. So what exactly IS 'opaque couche'? It's not a rich, latte inspired caramel brown, nor is it a deep forest green, but more of a muddy combination between the two, or, in much simpler terms, it kinda looks like dirt. Variations on the shade can be found by Googling army green or earth-tones. In the fun world of fashion, it's known as olive, safari, khaki, or puce. 

I personally love this color and believe that anyone can rock it when you do so with a touch of fun and confidence. Here are a few tried and true stylist tips for incorporating this "ugly" color into your wardrobe:

  1. Start small - grab a bag, clutch, belt, or scarf.
  2. Use a topper - add this color into your wardrobe by choosing outerwear pieces or a long vest. 
  3. Make a statement - experiment with building an outfit around several shades of this color for a truly fashion-forward look.
  4. Stay neutral - so this is all well and good, but you may be thinking what colors do you even wear with this?? When in doubt, stick with neutrals - white, navy, black. Subtle patterns like stripes or leopard print can still ground a look but also give it visual interest. 
  5. Go for contrasting - My friend Alison suggested pairing this with not so subtle colors like pinks or oranges and I love that! Something that's unexpected can be a great fashion combo. 

Get the look

Shop some great "ugly" items below! 

Sydney Lester is a Richmond, Virginia-based personal stylist who creates wardrobes that reflect your life + style.