Do You Wear “Your” Colors?

A favorite blog, Into Mind, is featuring a series about color analysis. I am reading it with interest because the blog author, Anuschka, is smart and a good writer, and seems to love the world of fashion/beauty.

Anuschka’s post earlier this week had me Googling all kinds of color palettes for the “cool” person I presume to be (heh). According to the new, expanded version of color theory, in fact, I am most likely a Soft Summer (hey!). “My” best colors consistently came out like this:

Source, and there are other versions too.

Not too bad. I really love wearing purple, dusty blue, denim, gray, and most of these greens. You won’t catch me alive in soft or hot pinks next to my face, although I’d love it for a pair of flats. And no yellow I’ve ever found looks good on me.

On the other hand, two of my favorite colors are off-the-chart. I love wearing true black, and olive. Black looks great on me, especially a v-neck blouse or sweater (it looks like black is on the chart, but it’s dark gray). Somehow the contrast with my pale skin and hair works out. Olive is probably the color I get the most compliments on; it matches my eyes.

I wore this very tee shirt today and looked good (I say).
Old Navy calls it Sea Turtle, but I know it as “Olive” ☺

I do buy into the cool-vs.-warm concept, as I have made a few tries at reddish (warm) hair and they were tragic. And most “Autumnal” colors make me look ill. But I haven’t quite swallowed the whole specific season thing; there are too many exceptions in my experience.

Over to you: are you a believer in the classifications of color analysis? Do you actually have a “Season”? (awesome). Do you wear whatever the heck you want and not give color analysis a single thought? Either way, stay fabulous.

Happy, happy Thursday,

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  1. I do know that I have colours that look best on me, but the older I get, the more I tend to ignore this. Especially since I have silver (well, partially anyway) hair, there are all these "rules" about what you should and should not wear. I find that if I am wearing a colour that is outside of my list of "good" colours, All I have to do is add a colourful necklace, some lipstick, or layer a contrasting blouse underneath and voila. I feel like a whole world has opened up to me, and I will never again not buy something I really want (like a camel coat) just because it's not "my" colour.

  2. black is not a color it is a neutral. I think that is why it is universally appealing to most people.

  3. I a;;laud your independence. If you dont feel good in the colors you wear than what is the point. I always considered black a neutral not a color but maybe I am splitting hairs…..

  4. I know the colors that are supposed to look good on me, olive being one of them. But I don't follow those rules. I wear what I think looks good. I don't like to follow lots of rules like I used to. Things like this really appealed to me about 10 or 15 years ago. Now I just wear what I like! Black is at the top of my favorite colors to wear.

  5. First, thanks for linking up!
    And I have heard that we are naturally attracted to the colors which best suits you?
    I think i do, i always get the same color palette

    Have great weekend Patti!


  6. I love color theory but what people so often miss is what is their natural coloring telling them. This has a huge influence on what will work on your skin tone. Patti I think you are a Spring warm colored person with very little contrast between your hair eye color and skin tone. So you are by nature a neutral. So when you wear the lighter tones whether they are cool based or warm based look good on you. I cant tell if you have warm fleck of gold in your eye color or white flecks. Black will look good on you because you are a neutral.

    I am a tri-colored person there is a great deal of color in my skin hair and eyes so warm neutrals tone me down and I look better. I have green eyes with gold, red hair and a ruddy red complexion. Your hair color will dictate what neutrals beigh whites etc will work on you. Your skin color will dictate the reds oranges or pinks and reds that will look good on you and your eye color will also help you decide on what other colors will look good on you. If your eyes are brown then your hair and eyes will be a soft contrast and that will dictate what prints will look good on you.

    There is a book that talks all about this it is called The Triumph of Individual Style by Carla Mason Mathis and Helen Villa Connor, It has so much good information.

  7. Personally, I think the Color Me Beautiful chart was right on target for me. Even though my skin color has changed over the years, the colors I like mesh with those I have gravitated to and worn over the years, and are ones that still look best on me. They also bring the most compliments from friends and others. I definitely fall into the vibrant colors of winter or summer–black, true white, royal blue, red, turquoise/teal, etc. Pale colors, pastels, make me look very washed out. There is, however, a true neutral for every skin color. Another reader's comment about the importance of the shape of the neckline is very true, particularly beyond a certain age.

  8. I feel like I look best with red, blue, purple, & kelly green near my face–it's all compliments and how nice I look… If I wear beige, cream, grey, olive, or the worst–white, I looked washed out and people ask me if I'm 'tired' all day!

  9. I don't follow a chart, but I do follow the dressing room mirror. When a top is available in multiple colors, it amazes me how certain colors brighten my complexion and others make me look jaundice. I grab the flattering color every time.

  10. I have no idea how the colors things work. I usually just settle for holding things up near my face and if it looks good go for it. But at the same time, I say "fuck it" and wear stuff weather or not it suits my coloring. I look best in reds, even with my red hair, I think. But then again I've had perfect strangers tell me how bad I look in oatmeal. So I stick with Wendy B's philosphy of wear what I want.

    Ultimately, I have a very neutral skin tone with neither pinks nor yellows in my undertone, which always makes it a hard shot of categorizing myself. I'm also pale, with little pigment variation in my face/lips. Maybe the red hair makes me an Autumn? But it's not natural so who knows!

  11. Yes. This. It can be helpful to have the guidance of a color family or group of hues to start with, especially when there are so many choices out there. One thing I do remember from having my "colors done" back in the '70s (at a Camp Fire meeting!) was that you can often tell instinctively what works for you. If you put it on, especially if it's close to your face, and you feel washed out or don't like it, then it's probably not the best color for you (and you probably won't want to wear it anyway).

    I also think everyone can wear black!

  12. Apparently, I'm a light summer, according to the quick internet quiz I just took. I, too, look good in olive! It's an interesting thing to think about, and I can sort of see what They mean, but at the end of the day, I'm unlikely to be swayed by anything except what I like, you know?

  13. so interesting approaching to colors, I'm enjoying these new (to me) color palettes, and I've discovered I'm a winter, but the colors I wear more frequently are absolutely warm autumn colors!!, really funny!
    besos & fun

  14. I just mentioned colour analysis in my post then came over and found this! I had a Colour Me Beautiful consultation last year and found it so useful. I am cool and clear – always thought I was a sort of Autumnal colouring, and the sort of pale where I just look really pale in lots of things. Like I said in the post, I don't look hideous in soft green, but I look luminous in dark emerald green. Ok in rose pink, but HELLO in dark blush pink and teals, and ice blues. The consultant said I was unusual, with soft light brown hair, but because it was still a contrast against pale skin and dark eyes, I was in this category. Best £100 I spent in relation to clothes.

  15. I've always been intrigued by color analysis, but I've never been able to figure out what I am. I can't tell if I'm warm or cool, and that's sort of a key element. I love that olive color, like you, though. I have green eyes, too, and I like to wear green to bring them out.

  16. Interesting post Patti. Nope I am not a believer. I wear whatever I want to, tho. What I wear is who I am, tho.

  17. I believe that we're naturally drawn to colours that make us feel good and look good on us. Not sure if that's the same thing as ascribing to colour theory, per say. I'm supposed to be a Winter and do indeed look wonderful in royal blue and icy blues, but other Winter hues like cherry red and hot pink look hellish on me. Plus I wear brown and olive green, apparent no-nos, and so far the fashion Gods haven't struck me down. 🙂 In the end, I think you wear what makes you feel good – invariably you will look good!

  18. I wear colors depending on my mood. In fact, I can wear almost any color, even though I'm very pale. Some things not directly to the face, anyway: it always depends on the combination of.
    Beige only not the point, at most times as pants, but very rarely. This makes me sick.
    Great lively patterns do not go for pale people …

  19. I'm a non-believer, too.
    Years ago I got swooped on by a colour consultant at some exhibition, got hauled on stage and the audience was told how I was "not fulfilling" my "true potential" with my vivid lipstick and bright colours. I got made over in muted pastels and shimmery make up as apparently, I'm a Cool Summer, too. My pallor may have looked "less tired" and "healthier" but man, I felt like crap – my personality and visibility had been neutralised and my boyfriend at the time pissed himself laughing.

  20. Generally, no. I've had color analysis done a couple of times, and while I do think it's helpful for either honing in on which colors are best or conversely, expanding the range of what colors you think you can wear, but my mantra remains "tools not rules." I consistently wear black and like how I look in it, and more importantly how I *feel* in it. And I think that's the crux…we have certain emotional reactions to color that are very individual and personal, and can't discount those. I sometimes wear colors that aren't "my" colors on my bottom half, or with shoes or a bag.

  21. Years back, 1970 or so, I was 'analyzed' as to what colors look best on me. I wore those colors faithfully for about 3 years and got really bored and then threw all caution to the wind and started wearing what every I pleased. hmmmm. Many tell me they love certain colors at certain times and I have also had many bloggers tell me that I can wear almost any color / neutral, etc. So hog wash on the "certain colors" and I just wear what I dang well please. I'm old enough, that's for sure. LOL

  22. Well, I read the post, and still have NO idea what I am supposed to be. That whole Colour Me Beautiful makes me laugh a bit really – you can usually tell women who have "had their colours done", they hold items of clothing up to their face in shops, and say "no, I can't wear this, I'm Summer".

    I don't buy it, I'm afraid. It's just too formulaic and ignores personality, personal style, and the immense (and changeable) variety of shades of skin, hair and eyes.

    And doesn't it strike anyone as odd that women of colour are not included in any season? Where is the colour palette for black women? xxxx

  23. i do not pay attention to the seasonal charts. I love saturated, deep colors. Not pastels. Olive is also one of my colors and purple, burgundy, deep teal, navy…

  24. I must agree with cp that color theory is a good starting point. That is where you learn the affect of color. However, I believe the color analysis business that put us into seasons has also benefited us and guided us into awareness of color affect. I have also seen correlation between color, personality and body types. You may find this study of interest as well. I definitely buy into the cool/warm undertone theory as well. This is an interesting topic and one each of us will probably have differing opinions on, but it still remains true that there are "best" colors and "best" clothing styles that enhance our natural beauty and make us feel more beautiful.

  25. Color theory is a nice starting point, I think. It shows us to be aware that some colors are more flattering on us than others and that colors in a certain group will probably work well for us. Still, we need to remember that coloring variation in humans is much more varied than most of the color analysis programs suggest. We each need to look for what looks best on us. You know olive looks good on you and so you wear it with great success. Likewise, I found the light pink is flattering for me – a color I would never have guessed and doesn't show up on my color charts – by noticing it looked wonderful on another woman with coloring nearly identical to mine. Now I wear it and frequently get compliments.
    Necklines are important, too, I think. It doesn't do much good to wear a flattering color if the neckline I choose makes me look manly or ages me by 10 years.

  26. I don't believe in this at all. I think that we can all wear certain shades of every colour.


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