Lilac vs. Lavender: What is the difference between Lilac and Lavender?

Lilac vs. Lavender: Let’s discuss their differences, similarities, pros & cons, define which to choose, and answer some frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Lilac vs. Lavender: Differences, Pros & Cons, Similarities

Lilac vs. Lavender: What comes into your mind when you hear the word lavender – a color, a flower, a plant, or a scent? The same concerns with Lilac. The lilac vs. lavender talk takes us to two different shades between purple and violet, with lilac carrying a tinge of pink while lavender carrying a tinge of blue. 

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Defining lilac vs. lavender for better understanding

What is Lilac?

Lilac is used to define a flowering bush from eastern Europe that belongs to the olive family. Now it is a part of the color chart as well.

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What is Lavender?

Lavender is a flowering plant that belongs to the mint family and has a unique aromatic scented fragrance — also reckoned for being a herb and a color.  

Considering the pros and cons of lilac and lavender  

Pros of Lilac 

  • It can be seen in a wide color range of flowers. 
  • Lilac makes deep dark fragrant perfumes. 
  • It smells like roses combined with vanilla. 
  • It has varieties in color shades.  

Cons of Lilac 

  • Lilac has poisonous nature and should not be consumed orally.  

Pros of Lavender  

  • It acts as an herb. 
  • It can cure anxiety, insomnia, and stress.  
  • It works as a flavor in food and beverages. 
  • Lavender oil can alleviate muscle pain.  
  • Lavender oil has antifungal and antibacterial effects. 

Cons of Lavender 

  • An excess quantity applied to the skin may cause irritation and allergies.
  • It must be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding.  

Considering the similarities between lavender and lilac

  • Both lavender and lilac flowers appear similar in color and shape. 
  • Lilac color vs. lavender color, both are shades of purple. 
  • Both are a combination of the same colors, red and blue. 
  • Lilac vs. lavender plants both have aromatic properties. 
  • Both are used to make perfumes. 
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Bringing out the difference between lavender vs. lilac flowers

Scientific Name The scientific name of lilac is Syringa vulgaris.  The scientific name for lavender is Lavandula.  
Origin It is a member of the Olive Family, Oleaceae. It is a member of Lamiaceae, a mint family.
PresenceIt is found in temperate areas of the world. Eastern Asia and southeastern Europe, mostly. It is mainly found in Asia, Europe, and Africa.
Fragrance  It smells like a rose with a touch of vanilla and has a strong aroma. It smells floral, light, and fresh with a unique aroma. 

Considering the differences between lilac color vs. lavender color

Basis LilacLavender
ShadeIt is a shade of violet. It is a shade of purple. 
AppearanceIt has a pinkish appearance.  It has a bluish appearance. 
Type It is considered warm. It is considered cool. 
Other shades Its other shades include Pale Violet, Dark Mauve, Deep Lilac, Rich Lilac, Pale Lilac.Its other shades include Pale lavender, Lavender-pink, Lavender-grey. 
Symbol of It symbolizes superficiality, juvenility, and effervescent. It symbolizes sensitivity, susceptibility and refers to beautiful things in life. 

Some snappy facts about Lavender and Lilac:  

  • Lilac flowers grow in large panicles, and lavender grows in a curlicue. 
  • Lilacs do spread, and a lilac bush needs a spacious place. 
  • Violet vs. lilac: lilac is a light shade of violet, whereas violet is too dark. 
  • Lilac vs. violet: Lilac is a shade of violet but carries a pinkish tinge to it.
  • Lilac vs. purple: Though lilac is a shade of violet, it is more similar to purple than violet. 
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Lilac or lavender dresses

Since lilac and lavender wedding has been in trend, wedding attires are the most basic but significant thing. Lilac and lavender dresses are now available in a huge range with different styles. These colors are a hit for any special occasion as they exude simplicity and style at the same time.  

Color Comparison Chart

Lilac vs. Lavender: Let’s discuss their differences, similarities, pros & cons, define which to choose, and answer some frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Is Lilac the same as lavender?

No. Lilac belongs to the olive family, and lavender belongs to the mint family. 

Do lilac and lavender smell the same?

There is a difference between lilac vs. lavender scent. Lavender has a light and fresh floral fragrance, whereas lilac has a strong fragrance.  

Which is lighter; lilac or lavender?

Lavender is lighter than lilac both in terms of shade and fragrance. 

Is Lilac the same as purple?

No. The difference between lilac and purple is that purple is a color made of a combination of red and blue, whereas lilac can be identified as a pallid violet shade with a slight touch of pink. This also explains lilac vs. lavender vs. violet, with lilac being a shade of violet and lavender being a shade of purple.

Where is the best place to plant a lilac bush?

The best place to plant a lilac bush is in an area with well-drained soil where the sun shines for at least 7 hours. 

What color looks good with lavender?

Lavender is a versatile color and creates an excellent impact. White looks great with lavender, but you cannot beat the combination of light gray and lavender. It will add value to your decor.  

What color looks best with purple?

Purple is a majestic color, and it can shine on its own. When you want to combine any other color, you can go with purple + bronze or purple + mint green. These colors look elegant together. 

If you want it to shine bright, combine purple + orange + Pink.

What colors make lavender?

The blue and the red color mixup makes lavender. Lavender has a bluish texture. 

Do lilacs spread?

Yes, lilacs do spread.  

Is there a difference between a lilac tree and a lilac bush? 

When a lilac bush grows enough to appear like a tree, it becomes a lilac tree. Lilac trees can grow up to 26 feet. The only difference is the height; else, they are the same. 

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Choosing between lavender and lilac

Lavender and lilac are two different colors and different flowers. The difference between lilac and lavender lies in their unique qualities. Lavender and lilac both are rousing colors. Talking about scents, if you want a light floral fragrance, go with lavender. And if you want a dark deep exotic experience, choose lilac.

Alex Stantor
Alex Stantor

Alex Stantor is a Sorbonne University (Paris, France) graduate in Philosophy and Data Analysis. Currently, he is an Author and Researcher at Difference 101, he writes articles/blog posts on topics such as "thinking differently" and "the importance of difference". Alex is a passionate advocate of diversity in the workplace and in companies, and diversity and inclusion in corporate communications. He currently lives in Brooklyn.

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