'My mind is blown': Internet baffled over colour of beanie

·News Reporter
·2-min read

A beanie has left people online scratching their heads for its ability to seemingly change colour.

Otelia Carmen, an interior designer from the US, posted a video of the beanie on TikTok after recently purchasing it.

“So I bought this green hat at the store today, then when I brought it home and took it out I wondered, ‘why is this brown?’” she said.

Ms Carmen carries the hat through her house under different lights, and it appears to change colour.

A beanie is pictured appearing to be both green and brown under different lightning.
Can you work out what colour this beanie is? Source: TikTok/Otelia Carmen

The beanie had viewers absolutely flummoxed.

“I truly thought it was about her being colourblind. Now I’m just confused,” one woman wrote.

One TikTok user said her “mind is blown” while another claimed that she had an olive jumper which had the same colour-changing property.

Adding to the confusion, the beanie’s label doesn’t appear to state what colour it is.

Others compared it to the blue dress debacle from a few years ago which divided the online world. Famously known as "the dress that broke the internet", people bickered over whether the dress what black and blue or white and gold.

“I left this problem in 2015. I don’t have the energy any more,” one woman wrote, referring to the infamous item of clothing.

So, why is the beanie seemingly changing colour?

Ms Carmen says this is because of metamerism which she notes is important in her line of work as an interior designer.

Metamerism is when a single object changes colour under different lighting conditions.

She demonstrates it in action again – holding the beanie in her bedroom under artificial light which she says is how the beanie appeared in the store: green.

Ms Carmen then puts it on and steps outside into the sun, demonstrating how it turns to brown. 

As explained by Science Direct: "Metamerism is a phenomenon where the colour of two objects appear the same under a particular light source, but actually have different spectral energy distributions. When a different kind of light source is used, the colour difference between them is revealed."

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