What are Beige Flags in a Relationship?

Are beige flags something to worry about?
on September 11, 2023
Read time: 10 mins
by Moraya Seeger DeGeare

Just as we learned out to decipher the red flags and how to spot green flags in our prospective partners — there’s another color code to add to the list!

Beige flags are the latest TikTok trend to get us thinking and therapizing our own relationships. While a scroll through your FYP might give you some answers, we’ve got to the bottom of beige flags in our guide. 

From cute to questionable quirks, what is your beige flag? And is it problematic to put a label on them? Read on to find out! 

What is a beige flag? 

Like so many things these days, this modern dating trend was born on TikTok, with the stage between red and green flags finally defined — meet beige flags. 

Unlike red flags, this kind of information isn’t a dealbreaker but might make you stop in your tracks and think “Wow, okay!” From the way they order their food to their movie-watching habits, any quirk can be classed as a beige flag. 

These idiosyncrasies are not quite ‘icks’, while they might cause you to cringe, these little quirks aren’t anything to worry about in the long run. When you encounter them for the first time these might seem like odd traits, but like many social media trends — you shouldn’t be reading into them too much!

While this TikTok trend isn’t gospel, it can be fun to think about your own beige flags. From your unrivaled ability to listen to Taylor Swift for hours on end, to your unhealthy obsession with the Kardashians — we all have silly little personality traits that make us who we are!

What are some beige flags? 

Since beige flags are personal to each couple or individual, it’s harder to pin down some relevant illustrations of this new trend. 

Therefore, we turned to our Paired team to unearth some examples of beige flags that might shine some clarity on the subject! 

“Apparently my beige flag is that I watch every season of Friends in order till I finish it, then repeat, over and over — and there’s no sign of stopping ever.”
“My partner’s beige flag is that whenever he goes climbing or walking on a mountain, he brings me back a small rock/stone. It’s cute but now I have a collection of stones!”
“Mine is that I always spin pens around my fingers when I’m working from home, and I constantly drop them, so they clatter really loudly on the table/floor and give my partner a shock!”
“My girlfriend’s beige flag is that whenever she leaves a mug or plate on the side, she puts it right on the edge of the counter. So it’s literally about to fall off — there’s a whole counter there!”
“My partner always WITHOUT fail has to ask the waiter for their opinion on the menu. If he could ask the McDonald’s machine their opinion he would!”
“My beige flag is that I break any ‘thingy’ on a pen that comes near me, and if there is a paperclip, I will start to bend it.”
“My boyfriend’s beige flag is that if they see a cliff, he has to take a break there. There is no way you could drive by without him getting out and enjoying the view!”
“My beige flag is that I leave empty cups of coffee all around the flat throughout the day, like a little path of caffeine!”
“My husband’s is that he needs to do the dishes right after he’s done cooking, so I usually sit there with our plates ready to be eaten while he cleans every dish before we can enjoy our food!”
“My beige flag is that I read the synopsis for everything before I read or watch it — sometimes even while I’m watching something, I’ll read the synopsis.”
“My partner’s beige flag is that we’ll be watching our programs and then out of nowhere, they’ll get up and pick up their guitar and start playing WHILE the show is still on! I mean it’s cute, but kind of distracting from the show!”
“My beige flag is that I absolutely refuse to use cutlery that has only just been washed/cleaned, especially when it’s still hot/warm from the water. I feel like it might be washed, but it’s still only just been used.”

"Some of these flags we laugh at, while others make us cringe. But what's most important to me is that reading my lovely coworkers' flags gives me insight into how they see themselves,” says Moraya Seeger DeGeare, a licensed marriage and family therapist and In-House Expert at Paired.

“Some are a little critical, while others are so loving toward their partners. The biggest part of this trend is the great conversations that can be had with friends about relationship behavior. Sharing about your relationship can help normalize the fact that we all have quirky things we do, and we can feel a deeper sense of connection through these conversations."

“So whether you post about your beige flags or not, use this trend to talk about your relationship openly with a trusted friend.”

Is the concept of beige flags problematic? 

While viral trends are simply part of the modern world, it’s important to ask if dissecting your partner’s or your potential partner’s beige flags is a healthy practice. 

"The healthiest part of this trend is that it gets people talking about their relationship more,” says Seeger DeGeare. 

“Often, people feel like they need to present the best view of their relationship to the world, out of respect for their partner. However, this can also mean feeling isolated in your relationship. Sharing "beige flags" can open up communication and allow friends to provide feedback on how the behavior affects you."

For some TikTok users, it’s just a fun trend to consider when scrolling through dating profiles, while others can use it as an excuse to ignore relationship warning signs. 

In this way, the beige flag trend can be problematic as it’s easier to disguise silent red flags as beige, excusing harmful behaviors as nothing more than a viral TikTok. This is why it’s important to be aware of any real warning signs, and refuse to dismiss toxic behavior as a quirk to preserve your relationship. 

"If you are now questioning whether your beige flag is cute or toxic, start by thinking about how you feel when the behavior is happening,” says Seeger DeGeare. 

“This can help you determine if it is painful or humorous."

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can beige flags be applied to people outside of dating?

    While beige flags are usually applied to your significant other or prospective partners, technically these quirks can be spotted in anyone! However, if you’re pointing out someone’s beige flags, make sure to approach it with tact — as not everyone may find this TikTok trend so comedic. "We have many close relationships outside of our intimate romantic ones. Therefore, discussing 'beige flag' behaviors in friendships can be a fun conversation, as long as it is approached with kindness,” says Seeger DeGeare. “Your friends may appreciate it if you share your own behaviors first, rather than pointing out theirs. Healthy vulnerability is deeply valuable in friendships as well.”
  • Should I end a relationship over a beige flag?

    Unlike red flags or even silent red flags, beige flags are not dealbreakers. Even though these quirky traits may not be ideal, if you’re comfortable in your relationship — they shouldn’t cause you to cause you to end things with your loved one! "If you are wondering if this is worth ending your relationship, it probably means you want to break up and are looking for a reason,” says Seeger DeGeare. “So I recommend digging deeper into what is truly bothering you about the relationship, and not getting stuck on how your partner always orders you the wrong coffee." In many cases, these little quirks will actually make you love your partner even more — ah, true love.
+50k reviews
Improve communication in your relationship.
Download the #1 app for couples to guide you in the process.
petal decoration

Enjoying this article?

A happier relationship starts here.

Question with locked answer