Difference between Beauty and Aesthetics

Beauty and aesthetics are two terms that have a lot to do with each other and that are usually used without any distinction when it comes to evaluating and valuing the physical qualities of a person or the expressive qualities of a work of art.

However, using them as synonymous words is a mistake that many people tend to fall into. In this article we will point out the differences between these two terms based on their definitions and main characteristics.


In its most general sense, beauty can be defined as everything that is pleasing to the eye. However, there are numerous definitions of beauty, as it is a purely subjective matter, which has to do with the particular considerations of each person. In this way, beauty can be defined as a set of qualities that generate sensory pleasure to the person who perceives it.

It is then an abstract and personal (subjective) matter that is perceived through the senses and that can vary from one person to another. In response to this approach, it can be said that there is no single concept of beauty, what may be beautiful for one person may not be for another. However, there are canons or standards to determine the physical beauty of a person, the aesthetic beauty of a work of art, or the literary beauty of a given text.

Those parameters or criteria can be harmony, proportion and symmetry in the case of physical beauty, symbolic potential, philosophical truth and expressive impact in the case of works of art and content, message, writing and expressive language in the case of literary beauty. .


Aesthetics is a branch of philosophy that deals with the study of beauty. Its function is to determine the qualities that make a particular person or situation perceive a work as beautiful. Aesthetics studies the criteria and parameters that are used to determine beauty, based on the sensory experience they produce to the person who perceives it.

Aesthetics is therefore a science that deals with sensitive knowledge that is acquired through the five senses, producing sensations of liking or disliking. In addition, aesthetics studies the ways of interpreting these sensations, so aesthetics is closely related to art and its expressions.

Based on the above, it becomes clear that beauty and aesthetics are not the same. They are very different concepts from each other although they are often used to refer to the same object or situation. Consequently, the most outstanding differences between beauty and aesthetics are presented :

Beauty Esthetic
In a broad sense, beauty is everything that is pleasing to the eye, be it a person, a thing, among others. It is a branch of philosophy or discipline that deals with the study of what is beautiful.
Beauty is an abstract notion that only takes place in the mind of the person who perceives it. Aesthetics is a concrete notion, because it is a science.
Beauty has to do with personal criteria and judgments, so it is considered subjective. Aesthetics has to do with parameters, canons and established standards, therefore, it is an objective science.

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