Best Makeup Colours : Soft Summer
October 18, 2010 by Christine Scaman
It’s a good thing Soft Summers are so wonderfully even-tempered. A certain fortitude helps for the group who have most often been assigned 2 or 3 different Seasons. The very fact that the coloring is not obvious is precisely the concept of this Season. Therefore, nothing else about the appearance should be blatant either. Dark liners, yellow highlights, or golden bronzers might be ineffective or undetectable or other Seasons. On Soft Summer, they are shrill.
At her most aligned, Soft Summer dresses for an art gallery opening. She wears her makeup the same way. Ultimately tasteful and sophisticated, she would be invited anywhere. She is never inappropriate, bold, or abrupt, and her makeup is not either.
In 12 Season Colour Analysis, Soft Summer is the Neutral Season that is basically a Summer, incorporating the earliest feeling of Autumn. Still more an intuition than a very obvious shift, True Summer’s cool/soft palette is now observed through a veil of light grey smoke. Here on the outskirts of Autumn, the light taupe that settles over the entire palette is not yet warm enough to heat these colors. What it does is dull them. (See How The 5 Springs Add Yellow for more on how heat is added to the warm Season personal colour palettes).
If you looked at True Summer’s colours through the sky in the picture above, they might look like the cosmetic colors palette below. Look at the effect the mauve-grey-taupe has on the grass and trees, relative to the colors in the foreground. A little warmer, certainly more muted and quiet.
I could have sworn those blocks were lined up when I made this. Let’s not notice that. Instead, we could notice that the entire palette seems to fogged, even a bit blurred. If I’d really been on the ball, I would have softened the edges of all those squares and put the lightest mushroom color over the background.
There are no extremes of darkness or brightness. The overall effect is cooler than warm, so no gold, warm beige, or orange. The feeling is gentle but not fragile, an oak tree rather than a crystal vase (which would be Bright Spring). Soft Summer could share their cooler makeup palette with True Summer, but not with their warmer neighbor, the Soft Autumn, whose colors are much too golden to perfect this skin tone.
The most beautiful eye appears to be coming out of a misty lake. Eyeshadows and liners are hazy tan greys and mauve greys. The eyeliner is not much darker than the eyeshadow, to avoid creating an obvious line which only looks severe. In this Season, liner can distinguish itself by being a different color than the shadow, instead of a darker color.
The tan browns can be used to fill in brows as well. Eyebrows should never be the first thing people notice on anyone, or they’re overdone. On this group especially, brows may be darker or lighter than the hair depending on the individual, but they should diffuse into the face. It’s the eye color we’re trying to energize. Brows, blush, lipcolor, and hair are there to support, heighten, and accentuate eye color. When the natural features flow so seamlessly into one another, makeup must be exceptionally undemanding to not take over.
The lip and blush colors are interesting. Soft Summer and Dark Winter share certain characteristics. Both add neutral brown to a pure cool Season, True Summer and True Winter respectively. Dark Winter’s brown is much darker as Winter imposes blackness. Both are Neutral Seasons, so have cool and warm choices. Cool for Soft Summer is dusty plum, while warm is tan rose (still definitely a cool version). Cool for Dark Winter is not dusty or greyed at all, quite the opposite, but it is a browned plum; warm is saturated coral pink, dulled a bit with a drop of dark brown.
I love Soft Summer’s red. It is not fire engine, scarlet, blood, or anything else that activates. Summer is restorative, not catalytic. We’re still in the realm of rose petals, they just live on a dusty road.
There are 2 makeup items that are truly out of place on this type of natural coloring. The first in bronzer. You might think it would work, since a light touch of it can be quite outdoor-glowy on Light Summers. The difference is that the heat is so not-obvious in Soft Summer that bronzer stands out. You can’t find taupe bronzer, and who would put a grey layer on their skin anyhow? You’re so much easier to look at in a powder that respects the coolness of the skin and is two shades darker than a match. Use it with restraint, more to contour than to add heat, or skip it altogether.
Shimmer in makeup is the second means of over-gilding this lily. A satin finish in a lip product, maybe, so much easier to find. This Season is an exception where matte choices are actually plentiful. High shine is insistent and feels too childish to fit into this supremely elegant atmosphere. Add shimmer to many Soft Summer eyeshadows, and they become Dark Winter’s.