Even after all these years, I still follow my own colour swatches. Ok, I break the rules sometimes but I know what I can get away with. It really does make shopping easier. For example there's little point in me trying on a big black and white bold patterned dress. It won't work no matter what I do to my hair and make-up. The pattern will overwhelm my blended look so I'll leave that to the more dramatic colour palettes. On the other hand a faded black (or black with a very soft pattern), I can do even though black isn't in my palette. It's less harsh and doesn't fight with my colouring. So I can discount all the clothes in a shop that I know won't work, making trying on much easier and more pleasurable. There's nothing worse than going into a changing room and finding that nothing looks right. Great for the confidence (not).
Colour can dramatically affect the way that you look. Get it right and you can look vibrant, healthy and even younger (gosh this is sounding like one of those scammy pop-up messages by the minute - it's not I promise). Get it wrong and it can make you look pale, tired, ill and older. Hmmmmm, let's just think about that. I know which I prefer!
Actually, we talk about wearing the right colour. That's not strictly true. Everyone can wear colour. I mean, I could find a perfect red for every single reader of this blog. It's the shade of colour that we have to get right. Let's look at red in more detail.
Here we have different shades of the colour ranging from pinky-reds right through to orangey-reds. There's one for you here - you just need to identify it! Actually there's probably a few shades that will work equally well but they'll all be from the same part of the table.
The Important Bit Is Coming Up...
The right shade depends on your overall look made up of your hair colour, eyes and skin tone. These 3 things tell a story, your story. So, Oprah Winfrey has a much stronger look than say, Jennifer Aniston. The idea is that to achieve your best look, you mirror your own little story with what you're wearing. Oprah can therefore wear much stronger colours more successfully than Jennifer. Are you still with me?
Ok, so now we know why wearing the right colour is good for you, let's see if we can identify your palette. For ease going forward, I've created 6 different tabs running down the right hand side of the blog which I'll keep there - hopefully it will act as a prompt when I'm talking about colours in future posts.
Ulrika Jonsson / Naomi Watts / Claudia Schiffer
You're a Light if you have naturally light blonde hair (ie. NOT out of a bottle) and light eyes (pale blue, green, grey). You may have pale eyelashes and brows that you have to pencil in. Your skin may burn easily in the sun and can be either pinky or golden in tone.
So your overall look is light and delicate. It figures therefore that your best colours will be light and delicate also. Take Claudia above, if we put her in a dark olive, it would totally overwhelm her casting dark shadows underneath her chin and cheeks. She'll no doubt look tired and very pasty. Naomi, the naught girl is wearing black (she doesn't get black in her palette) but it's away from her face so works. This is a great example of how to wear black if it overwhelms you although I'm not suggesting you rock up to work in an evening gown. A deep v-neck is probably more suitable!
Here are some examples of a few colours in your palette. As you can see they're all light and delicate. You'll probably find it easier to shop in the summer than winter when lighter shades are replaced by darker colours.
Catherine Zeta Jones / Halle Berry / Audrey Tatou
You're a Deep if you have dark hair and dark eyes. Your skin tone can be anything from porcelain through to black. It's a large group of ladies this one! Overall your look is strong and dramatic so you can wear strong colours. Beige won't look great on you unless you team it with a darker shade near to your face. Actually I recommend everyone has a 'poorly' colour should you ever feel like a day off work. In your case put on a beige polo-neck. You'll be shown the door by your boss before you even sit down!! Yes, it's that bad. Lurgy will look as if it's oozing from your pores. Black will be a wardrobe staple for you but don't forget other colours too.
Here are some examples of a few colours in your palette. A much stronger look than the Lights above. You might struggle in the summer months when shops tend to stock more delicate colours so stock up in the autumn and winter.
Julieanne Moore / Julia Roberts / Nicole Kidman
You're a Warm if you have red or warm tones in your hair, eyes can be any colour. Your skin may be golden or porcelain and you may have freckles but not always. How utterly beautiful are these women and yet they're all guilty of changing the colour of their hair. Julia went dark for a while (it looked ghastly), Nicole went blonde (that was okish as she has fair skin) and Julieanne went grey (but that was for the film, Hunger Games so I'll forgive her for that one).
So if you fall into this palette, your colours should all have a yellow undertone to them. Think back to when you were at school and were taught how to mix primary colours. Well let's take our example of red. By adding yellow, you get an orangey-red and if you keep adding yellow, eventually you'll end up with pure orange. This is a yellow based colour. The three ladies above have a golden look so will look incredible in orangey-red as opposed to a more strawberry colour that has lots of blue in it.
Here are some examples of colours in your palette. Rich, warm colours that will look amazing on you.
Judi Dench / Jamie Lee Curtis / Rita Moreno
You're a Cool if you have ash tones to your hair (grey, white, even dark blonde). Your eyes can be any colour. Your skin tone will be pinky or if you have black skin, a slight blue tinge. Many Oriental ladies fall into this category if they have very dark hair and a sallow (yellow-based) skin tone. The reason being because wearing anything yellow-y will make their skin look even more sallow - this palette is devoid of golden colours. You hair colour will give you a strong look and no doubt you'll find paler colours on their own (such as taupe, very draining on your complexion). By the way, white is a strong colour!
So if you fall into this palette, your colours will be the total opposite to the Warm palette above. Yellow based colours will often look dreadful. You're so much better in blue based colours. Let's take two pinks for example: coral and baby pink. How do we get to these two colours? Well both start with primary red and white. Mix these and you get a 'true' pink. Add yellow and it becomes coral. Or add a touch of blue and you get baby pink. So your friends are cool blues, blue-based greens such as peacock and teal (there's a heck of a lot of blue in these), pinks, cool reds and so on.
Here are some examples of colours in your palette. Cool and fresh shades.
You also get black and white - colours that we see the ladies above wearing well.
Elizabeth Hurley / Courteney Cox / Elizabeth Taylor
You're a Clear if you have dark hair and BRIGHT eyes (they must be bright but can be any colour) so there's lots of contrast between hair, eye and skin tone. Your brows and lashes will be dark. Skin tone can be any colour from porcelain through to black. Oprah Winfrey is a clear - she has amazingly bright eyes. That's a bit complicated to work out so you're going to have to trust me on this one!
So if you fall into this palette, your colours will be bright and strong. You'll look great in lots of contrast (so for example a sharp breton stripe in crisp black and white). I dare you to try on wishy-washy colours - they'll do nothing for you at all.
Here are some examples of colours in your palette. Lots of jewel shades - you lucky thing.
Kate Winslet / Kylie Minogue / Sue Johnston
You're a Soft if you have mousey or light blonde hair (often hilighted). Your eyes can be any colour but will be much more muted than a Clear above. They won't really stand out but they can change colour (mine turn green when I'm cross!!!). There's little contrast between your hair and skin colour so your overall look is quite blended.
I've included an 'older' Soft in the pictures above, the lovely Sue Johnston as I think ladies can confuse salt and pepper hair (Sue's) with a Cool's steely grey or white hair. If yours is more like Sue's then chances are you have a softer look so this is your category.
So, soft looks call for soft, muted colours. Bright, zingy colours and strong patterns may look cheap on you but hey don't despair, this is a very sophisticated palette, not too strong and not too deep.
Here are some examples of colours in your palette.
And so there we have it. Six very different palettes. Hope you've been able to identify your own. I'll pick up on this again soon as there's so much more to explore.
If you read the blog on a tablet or computer, you'll notice 6 little pop-ups on the right hand side (I don't think you'll see them on mobile devices - sorry). I'm going to keep these there so you can easily identify your own palette which will make it easier when we're looking at colour in future posts. You can click on any of the pictures and they will bring you to this post. Hope that helps as I've had lots and lots of emails from people who are interested in finding out their colour palettes.
I'm going for a lie down now - it's taken me literally hours to write this post!