yakeda Tactical equipment

A Brief Introduction to the Origin of Various Camouflage

December 02, 2022

We can see plenty of colors such as different camouflage and solid color (Black/tan/green/grey) when choosing tactical products, such as tactical vests, tactical backpacks, gloves, uniforms etc. This blog will talk about various camouflage and it's origin.


Table of Content








The Canadian CADPAT camouflage is the ultimate progenitor of the wide variety of pixelated digital camouflage available today. Back in 1996, Canada launched the CTS project to develop a computer-generated camouflage pattern. The design goal at the time was to produce a camouflage pattern that could be used at night to avoid detection by night vision devices.

While most traditional camouflage patterns are distinct, CADPAT consists of pixelated camouflage graphics. The blurred pattern makes it difficult to distinguish even with large movements during activities, and the camouflage index has increased immediately.



Before 2002, all branches of the U.S. Army wore the same camouflage training uniform, that is, M81 BDU and DCU.

The U.S. Army is very interesting. They have a very strong sense of small group honor and military competition to get the budget.

After 2002, the military color began to become an honorable emphasis. Each branch of the U.S. Army has a different military identification color, including their own exclusive camouflage.

MCCUU(Marine Corps Combat Utility Uniform) uses a camouflage pattern called MARPAT (Marine Pattern), which comes in two versions: WOODLAND MARPAT and DESERT MARPAT. Generally speaking, Depending on the area of operations or the environment of the station, U.S. Army in tropical or desert environments use DESERT MARPAT camouflage. While in temperate, boreal or jungle environments use WOODLAND MARPAT camouflage. Which replaces the BDU (Battle Dress Uniform) that was previously common to all branches of the military.

3.ACU Camouflage

When it comes to the U.S. Army, we have to mention the ACU. There has been a misunderstanding about the ACU. What’s ACU?

The full name of ACU is Army Combat Uniform. It originally refers to this uniform, not specifically this camouflage color. It is just that the tactical fans thought this camouflage is called ACU, and over time they got used to it.

In 2004, the U.S. Army introduced the concept of universal camouflage. The idea behind the "universal camouflage" concept is to issue soldiers with a single combat uniform that can be used in any environment. This eliminates the need to issue special camouflage uniforms to soldiers in different geographic areas,such as urban environments, desert or woodland, jungle. However years of use showed that the concept was almost a complete failure.

But things didn't go so smoothly. Finally the U.S. Army suddenly announced the adoption of UCP camouflage as the next generation of combat uniform camouflage. The so-called UCP camouflage, that is, the U.S. Army "universal camouflage" (Universal Camouflage Pattern). But things didn't go so smoothly. Finally the U.S. Army suddenly announced the adoption of UCP camouflage as the next generation of combat uniform camouflage. The so-called UCP camouflage, that is, the U.S. Army "universal camouflage" (Universal Camouflage Pattern). It is designed to provide soldiers with effective camouflage in jungle, desert and urban environments, and to effectively prevent detection by night vision equipment.

CP then improved on the unsuccessful Scorpion camouflage by developing and patenting the Multicam all-terrain camouflage.

At that time, the U.S. Army believed that it was generally equipped with advanced night vision imaging systems, which gave it an unparalleled advantage in night combat confrontations with its opponents. Therefore, they attached great importance to night warfare. And UCP camouflage has excellent night vision concealment ability, so they finally chose UCP camouflage.

But with the practical application, the embarrassing problem came. In Afghanistan and Iraq, the U.S. Army's enemies simply do not have night vision. People just hide at night. And the ACU really doesn't work anywhere except under night vision cameras for good camouflage.

In the streets of Iraq or the small villages of Afghanistan, the American soldiers this body "cement gray" is the favorite target of the militants set fire.

Starting in 2009, the U.S. Army reorganized a number of camouflage comparison tests and concluded that the UCP camouflage was the worst performer.



In order to alleviate this situation, the U.S. Army has temporarily adopted CP's commercial product - Multicam camouflage to produce uniforms and uniforms since 2010. And it pays Cype Precision a monthly royalty. This batch of MultiCam camouflage can be regarded as the genuine product purchased by the U.S. Army from CP, but it was only issued to the front-line combat troops and some special forces, and did not spread to the whole Army.

In view of the excellent camouflage effect of Multicam camouflage, the U.S. Army decided to change the entire army to Multicam camouflage.

But in 2008, the U.S. Army finished changing the UCP camouflage, and only two years later, it had to spend billions of dollars to change the camouflage, which caused dissatisfaction of the taxpayers. And the use of Multicam camouflage is to pay the royalty.

Therefore, the U.S. Army does not want to purchase genuine Multicam camouflage from CP on a large scale. How should this be done? Until 2014, the Army made a "smart" decision. To save on royalties, they brought back the Scorpion camouflage they had bid on in early 2002 and improved it for the Afghan terrain. The new camouflage was named the Operational Camouflage Pattern (OCP camouflage) because the U.S. military operation in Afghanistan was called "Operation Enduring Freedom". So the new camouflage was named OCP Camouflage Pattern (OCP Camouflage for short), which bypassed the copyright problem of CP company.

When OCP and MC are compared together, people who are particularly familiar with the different points of the two camouflages can see them, but in general it is difficult to distinguish them. 



Black: It's a common color and does not look abrupt in daily, which is not as high-profile as camouflage. 

  • Black products are easy to match that avoid color difference and stain resistant.
  • Black is the representative color of solemnity and seriousness. It is widely used in the police and law enforcement units with equipment color, can reflect the majesty of the law, the deterrent effect on criminals.

Desert & coyote:

  • Desert color has good camouflage effect in desert areas such as the Middle East.
  • Coyote is a little darker than mud and can be adapted to desert and woodland environments as a camouflage color. coyote is the designated color of the U.S. Marine Corps' loadout.

Ranger Green:

  • Ranger green is darker and greyer than olive green, a color used by the Army Special Forces Rangers.
  • Ranger Green is loved by many enthusiasts, and there are also many law enforcement units that choose Ranger Green as the color for their uniforms and equipment, such as the CTRU in Hong Kong and the FBI HRT in the United States.


In recent years many law enforcement units have chosen gray to replace the traditional black as the color of their uniforms and accoutrements. For example: the British CTSFO, the Hong Kong Police Railway Response Team (RRT).

Multicam: In order to meet the need for camouflage in a wider range of environments, CP company has introduced a complementary version of the standard MultiCam all-terrain camouflage, which is available in five versions: MultiCam Standard, MultiCam Black, MultiCam Tropic, MultiCam Arid and MultiCam Alpine.

  • MultiCam Black urban law enforcement version in black, a non-camouflage camouflage designed for use by law enforcement.
  • MultiCam Tropic Tropical Jungle version, primarily for use in areas that are primarily made up of lush vegetation and remain relatively untouched by seasonal changes.
  • MultiCam Arid Desert, mainly for desert areas where vegetation is sparse.
  • MultiCam Alpine Snow version is suitable for highland and snowfall areas. However, there are no MCAE camouflage products for sale on CP's official website.


CP: Chinese CP camouflage is a new camouflage with Chinese terrain characteristics developed independently on the basis of MC camouflage combined with Chinese terrain characteristics.

Kryprek camouflage:

 Kryptek has now released more than a dozen camouflages. All patterns are based on the imitation of foliage, animals, sea and geographical visual qualities. The more iconic ones are python camouflage and dead leaf camouflage. As Kryptek's philosophy reads: to integrate proven tactical gear concepts into the hunting and outdoor adventure market. Positioned as a line of technical hunting apparel based on the attributes of tactical military clothing.

A-TACS Camouflage:

A-TACS stands for Advanced Tactical Concealment System, which translates to Enhanced Tactical Camouflage System. The camouflage was designed by DCS (DIGITAL CONCEALMENT SYSTEM LLC.) to provide the military as well as law enforcement with better and more effective personal protection in the course of their daily work. Since A-TACS is designed to meet all-weather and all-terrain requirements, the system is available in different color styles for different environments.

The once popular digital camouflage has some drawbacks in one way or another. The square pixels used in digital camouflage can only create a distorted effect, but do not allow the user to blend into the environment (terrain, landscape), a disadvantage that is particularly evident when viewed through optical instruments (scopes, binoculars). This 90 degree angle color block design and the lack of use of natural colors makes it easy for scouts to find hidden targets.


Above mentioned camouflage color, they can be found everywhere. If you want to develop new products with camouflage or buy camouflage products, please contact us to get more information. Next blog we will talk about different tactical vests.


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