It can be tough to know which colors suit you best.
It’s really important, though!
Wear the right colors, and you look healthy, pretty, energetic, and well rested.
Wear the wrong colors and, well, you might get asked if you’re feeling okay.
The problem is that it can be really easy to tell which colors are most flatter, but for many, it’s just not that simple.
That’s why I use a system of four sets of drapes, one for each season, to analyze my clients’ coloring.
At a recent workshop, I did a fun exercise using colored scarves, berry and avocado. Women held the scarves up to their faces to see which was most flattering, the warm or the cool. (Given the size of the group and the constraints of time, we just tried warm and cool, not all of the four “seasons.”)
I held up the flag of warm colors to show that they were the colors that flatter my warm coloring best.
By contract, though it’s hard to see well in the picture, the berry color on me? Sad!
Whereas the same berry color on the woman holding the scarf in this picture is fabulous.
Color is tricky
But in some cases, it’s just not as obvious. I’m not sure whether warm or cool is right for the woman holding the avocado scarf below. I’d want to take more time to analyze her coloring.
The same is true of the woman in below, with the berry scarf.
Which do you prefer?
I’d also want to take more time to analyze the colors of the woman below, but I suspect she’s more warm and will do best in warmer colors.
What do you think? Avocado?
I’m honestly not sure. I’d need to spend a little time looking at her in a bunch of different colors of drapes.
Color is not an exact science, it’s an art. When I analyze a client’s colors, the two of us decide together what season she is. Sometimes it can take a while; sometimes she looks good in more than one season. The question is which season does she look and feel best in.
The issue that although in some cases it’s really obvious (case in point: yours truly), in others, it isn’t at all. It can take a while to figure it out, and it can even be the case that a woman looks pretty good in BOTH warm and cold.
Try this at home
You can do this kind of exercise at home.
Take any two pieces of fabric that you’re SURE are warm and cool and see which is most flattering to you. Or take a bright white (cool) and an ivory (warm) to see which works better.
Other questions to consider:
- What metal looks better on you, silver or gold? (Silver is cool, gold is warm.)
- Pay attention to what you’re wearing when you get compliments. It may have something to do with whether you’re wearing your best colors.
- Take a poll of your friends to find out which colors they prefer on you.
- Do you get your hair colored? The person who does is it probably a true expert in this area, because she or he spends the day deciding whether a person belongs in warm hair or cool hair. So take a look at what YOUR hair is, and that may also be a clue. (Caveat: sometimes colorists get it wrong, so that’s not a fool-proof approach.)
- Pay attention to how a warm or cool color looks against your skin. Finding the most flattering colors is not about matching your eyes to a color, or finding a color that works well with your hair, it’s about what makes you glow.
- When in doubt, teal and coral are almost universally flattering.