Titian is a tint of red hair, most commonly described as brownish-orange in color. More so, Titian hair is specifically a bright color, with a tint of golden-brown. It ranges in shades from medium to dark. Like most red hair, it is commonly associated with light features.
The term originates from Titian, an Italian painter who would often depict women with red hair of this description. Titian was was born in 1488/90 A.D. in Pieve di Cadore, and he died in Venice in 1576 A.D. His real name was Tiziano Vermillion, he was a student of, Giovanni Bellini, the leading painter in Venice. His artistic expertise as a great Venetian painter is evident in the fact that from 1515 A.D. onward, he worked for influential families, such as, the d’Este, Gonzaga, Furnace, and Rovere dynasties. He also worked for King Francois I of France. Titian received the Order of the Golden Fleece in 1533 A.D. while working as a court painter to Emperor Charles V. Titian went to Rome in 1545 A.D. to work for Pope Paul III. Later in his life, he worked for Philip II.
Titian has been used as a hair color term in America as early as the 1800s, with women commonly using henna to dye their hair Titian. From 1961 until 1966, all red-haired Barbie dolls were officially labelled “Titian”, with Midge being the staple for the variant. Midge’s packaging illustration featured this hair color, while the Barbie character was typically depicted with blonde hair during this period.
Titian is commonly misused synonymously for other hair colors with similar definitions or hues of color. Titian hair is mistaken with Venetian hair (strawberry blond, Venetian blond or honey blond) frequently due to similar definitions and origins.
Titian hair is also commonly mistaken for auburn hair. While Titian hair is a brownish shade of red hair, auburn hair is a brownish shade of hair encompassing the actual color red. Most definitions of Titian hair describe it as a brownish-orange color, but some describe it as being reddish. This is in reference to red hair itself, not the color red.