woman wearing toque in Toronto toque pronunciation

Toque Pronunciation - Difference Between a Toque and a Beanie


If you’ve ever been to Canada, you may have noticed that in the winter we wear “toques”. What is a toque? Is it any different from a beanie? And most importantly, how do you pronounce it? These are things we’ll be uncovering today. Let’s get into it!

What is a Toque? 

A toque is a small, tight-fitting and brimless hat that is often folded up to create an extra layer of fabric. They’re most often worn by Canadians during the long and cold winter months. 

Toque Pronunciation: 

For those who haven’t heard of the term “toque” before, you may be wondering how it’s pronounced. Native Canadians will have grown up hearing it quite frequently, so it becomes second nature but upon looking up the pronunciation online, some confusion may arise. 

Online sources explain the pronunciation as “took”, such as “I took a walk …”, meanwhile toque pronunciation is best described when spelled “toooke”. The emphasis is on the ouuuu sound, similar to the sound an owl would make. 

Difference Between Toque and Beanie:

Once you’ve got the pronunciation down pat, next up is understanding the difference between a toque and a beanie. Simply put, a toque is a synonym for beanie, meaning it’s known as a similar hat or the exact same thing. They’re both often made from knit material and fall under the same category of type of hat. 

With that being said, the term “toque” is unique to Canada, meanwhile ”beanie” is used most frequently in other English-speaking countries. 

There are a few differences, the main one being that toques are generally worn to protect yourself from cold weather (fall, winter and sometimes spring in Canada) and beanies on the other hand are sometimes made from a thinner material and therefore can be worn all year round

Of course, this greatly depends on the place you’re living in, as Canadians generally refer to all hats of this style (no brim) as toques, whereas Americans would call them a beanie. 

Some also argue that beanies have more of a 'slouchy' style due to additional fabric that hangs at the top of the hat.

Toques With a Purpose: 

Since toques place an emphasis on keeping you warm throughout the winter, it’s only fitting that they’re given to those in need! Toques From The Heart has been repurposing used hockey socks to provide Canadian’s experiencing homelessness with a toque to help them through the winter months. 

For every new toque you buy, a repurposed and durable toque is given to someone in need. Read more about our story and follow us on Instagram to stay up to date with our latest initiatives!

 Do you call it a toque or a beanie? We'd love to know! Leave a comment below. 

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