In any change you want to effect, three questions matter:
1. What do I want?
2. Where am I now?
3. What am I willing to do to get what I want?
What Do I Want
Very hard question. Most of us are schooled in what we don’t want. You might want to develop the full edge and potential of your appearance. If your idea of great makeup is to take what’s already there and make more of it, as mine is, Winter’s best makeup might have your redefining your position. The colours in the face are a lot and now we’re going to add a lot more. Adding just a little more doesn’t move Winter very far from the start point, or nowhere close to the max point, but maybe you just want to know a nice eyeliner and gloss and that’s all. There is no right or wrong answer.
There is nothing wrong with being a Winter without makeup. The important thing is to channel what you do towards the outcome that you want. Too often, we’ve never identified either what we want or what we do to help or hinder that. If you’re a Winter, the time has come. No face is more altered with makeup. As in life, the good and bad are equal. As in all things Winter, they are also simultaneously at both outer limits. Other types of colouring tend to look more similar with and without makeup, which is a definite good thing. But it’s the Winters who can go miles from where they started, and that’s good too.
I like a lot of colour on Winter, a lot of makeup, a lot of drama. The face is that way already. I want every woman to be all they could be. Would our 80-year-old selves excuse us for having been less than that? Would our reasons have been good enough? Hint: no excuse or decision based on fear or negativity is ever good enough.
This is good.
I know it’s hard. This is the group whose language is power, a currency that women have been un-trained to deal in by every force in their lives. Power is not second nature to us.
Where Am I Now
Even harder question. Unpacking our own luggage and seeing what’s really in there can be scary, especially if the zipper has been jammed for awhile. Lots of people can’t admit their height and weight and those are facts. As the oft-heard quote states, “Reality is an acquired taste.” And slowly acquired at that.
All those Winters from the 80s, which seem to have been in the majority, are very seldom Winters, which is fine because they’re usually wearing Summer colours. The real Winters are buried among every other type of colouring. Their road back is a longer one for the Tone you might think would be the easiest to analyze and dress. They don’t see it coming unless they are very dark of hair and eye to begin with.
Once, I’d love the Winter to walk in who is overdone in her Winterness. The young ones are, even without makeup. They’re bringing it. More eyeliner (that we remove), thigh high boots (brown, but they’re trying to be bigger and it’s good), cape flying, doing something luscious with the hair, more ME-ME-ME. In our fifties, we women have toned ourselves so far down that we can lose our discernment of what is just normal and right.
Especially in our later years, when our faces finally carry all the power that took 50 years to build, isn’t it time to stop being so careful? I get that not everyone wants to present a heavily made up, dramatic face, but it’s not even about drama in makeup. There is so much caution to shake off. Drama and glamour haven’t been added for a long time and yet, this is where they are most at home, most normal.
Personal Colour Analysis is a gateway to Here’s Who You Are.
What’s In A Winter Face: both extremes at the same time.
To be more specific:
1. Contrast. You saw this coming. It means that there is a lot of distance between everything and everything else, such as:
Features from skin. The skin is very even, smooth, and quiet. Insert into that landscape a mouth, cheeks, eyes, and eyebrows whose colours create a big and sudden jump from the background. That Shiseido banner up above.
Light – dark levels of contiguous colours. Eyeliner is dark (it contains more black than any other group). The eyeshadow next to it, the lid colour, is a fair bit lighter (lid colour is medium on the other groups). The next band, the eyeshadow contour, is quite dark by comparison (more about that later). The eyeshadow highlight is icy light, nearly white (not the case for pastel on Summers and creamy on Warms). The brow is quite dark (but not darkened more than Nature designed on anyone), very sharply defined, and dramatized extra (crisp, arched, lengthened, whatever works on that face, which is simply to see what’s there and make more of it). For sure, any particular face might need these adjusted a little, but this is the generic look.
Textures, ultra matte to ultra shine. Quiet skin. No special effects. Snow White’s face isn’t contoured (which sets up lowlights for Autumn), dewy (sets up highlights, best on Spring), or cottony (sets up fluffy, just right on a dreamy Summer). On a Winter face or a winter landscape, those look muddy, busy, and trivial, a million miles from Winter. You want foundation whose coverage is opaque enough to make a very even blanket. Powder the whole face evenly. Add lots of eyes, lots of mouth, more blush or less (both can be good). Done.
The Best Skin Finish on Winter Colouring is: Even.
2. Drama. It’s like a deficiency when drama is left out of a Winter eye design. Not wrong. There is no wrong, no answer that works across the board, even within a Season. Winters I’ve seen, they not only balance drama, they are enhanced further with it. It doesn’t look even dramatic, exciting, stimulating, theatrical, or otherwise extraordinary. It looks normal.
Would the image above make sense with a soft and gentle eye colour or shape (expression)? Winter’s is not a gradual, blended, or soft face.
When Summers buy cosmetics, look for products that have a gentle application. Remember when we applied your makeup and we divided the foundation with moisturizer, as I do on every Summer and Spring, because heavy and matte products look like a mask on your delicate skin texture and softened colouring? The same principle applies to all your cosmetics. Having said that, we also showed you that when a colour is correct, you can apply almost any amount of it and it just blends believably into the skin. That’s true, but these are two different ideas. Summer begins with a product that swatches like a watercolour. Winter is looking for oil paint.
3. Keep the number of cosmetic colours low. 1 is good. Colour is subtracted from winter landscapes. Many steely dark grays, many icy grays or icy colours (means nearly white). Very little colour activity. And suddenly, a deeply flushed cheek. A red or purple mouth. The colours in the face are shocking enough on a still and quiet energy.
Remember how on Lights, dark colour takes over? On Winters, it’s colour itself that becomes too much too quickly.
Would this be more effective if we added a buttercup, a bluejay, and a lilac? No, the red would lose its voltage. There are thousands of these photos out there because they make sense to humans by reinforcing something we already know and recognize.
4. Intensity. Don’t leave any features behind. Enhance each one to the same degree. Thou Shalt Not Be Wimpy. Apply a lot of colour to each feature and don’t blot any off till the whole face is done. Each part looks like too much on its own but it all works together when all the pieces are in place. Blend nothing till every part is done or you’ll overblend that feature back into cautious and unbalance the face.
Thou Shalt Not Be Wimpy applies equally to concealer as lipstick. The blues and purples in the skin are so saturated that a sheer concealer won’t hide them nearly as well as a product with good opacity. My favorite is Arbonne for that reason, plus it stays where it’s applied, it lasts amazingly well all day, and it dries fast so I can apply foundation over it immediately without overly diluting it or smearing it everywhere. I am very fussy about where concealer goes but I use a lot of it. For reference, I wear Arbonne Medium.
What Are You Willing To Do
Look very different to yourself? Exchanging a plaid duffel coat for a black and white herringbone is a step. Wearing bigger jewelry than all your friends? Be the only one of the girls to wear a fuchsia red mouth?
Draw a lot more attention to yourself? Stand out and apart? As many have discovered, getting noticed for being different isn’t easy, even is it’s a good different.
Wear your real true This Is Who I Am hair colour?
No right or wrong, just questions. Everything looks easy from the outside. Try it, you may find it takes some effort. What are the conditions on what you’re willing to do?
Would you wear twice as much makeup as you wear today? Most Winter women accept the eye makeup fairly easily. Lips can always be sheer. Winter’s sheer is Spring’s “Oh, dear Lord, too much, wipe it off, start again.” Winters, pick sheers with a lot of colour or save your money and buy Chapstick. Where you hear the brakes screech is with the blush. They feel like clowns for a week. What everyone else sees is a pulled-together face. Not in how much, which you can decide, but in how red. Blood on snow, right?
The Nature of Reflected Light
The Spring, Summer, and Autumn articles preceding this one are linked in their names. The idea is that our natural colours have a way of reflecting light. Beyond just the colours of the reflected light, the wavelengths have properties that reach our other senses, as texture for instance. In Chinese medicine, our fingers are entry and exit points for energy. Of course. How could they not be? They touch everything. They’re up and down-loading who we are all the time. Each of our sense organs is doing the same. Each of the 12 Tone colour collections speaks a certain language, is evocative of certain emotions, reminds of certain landscapes, and makes sense if consistent in colour and touch and sound and scent and taste. It’s all happening at once. The knee bone is connected to the neck bone.
Summer’s soft, gentle, serene, muted colours don’t make sense in leather pants. Skin with that colouring has reflective properties truer to the surface of an opal, not a mirror or an elephant’s hide. Soft Autumn skin reflects light like felt and its colours are more beautiful in that texture than done up in Mr. Freezies. Do colours bounce light in certain ways that tell us texture? Or is it that skin painted in certain colours also carries other qualities that bounce light in a way that impresses texture?
The True Winter surface is smooth and hard. Dark Winter is smoother than Dark Autumn but not 100% smooth; it’s also thick, and not quite as hard as True Winter. Bright Winter is very smooth, shinier, and semitransparent – Dr. Sheldon Cooper, as opposed to Autumn’s Magnum P. I. Though some will cringe, I’m still going with rubbery for Winter skin by comparison with the other Seasons.
So far, we’ve said:
Bright Spring: glass
True Spring: persimmon
Light Spring: petal
Light Summer: peach
True Summer: cotton
Soft Summer: flannel
Soft Autumn: suede
True Autumn: velvet
Dark Autumn: leather
Dark Winter: Vinyl
If we start at Dark Autumn and move along to its cooler side, we arrive next at Dark Winter. These are both Neutral Seasons. Dark Winter has more in common with the True Season parent of True Winter, but does share the most important dimension of colour, darkness, with the Neutral it’s paired with and whose descriptor it shares, that is, Dark Autumn.
We begin with Autumn’s canvas, which is strong and textured. As Winter settles in, the skin texture smooths out. Dark Autumn’s leather is transitioning.
Dark Winter skin throws light back like vinyl.
Not just record vinyl, but inflatable products, dominatrix gear, and tarps. Maybe even a car. Industrial, tough, shiny, smooth, waterproof, and useful. Good Dark Winter words. Not bad words for their jewelry and belts either. Dark Winter takes Dark Autumn’s gypsy/Rustic Opulent and shifts it to gladiator. A sweater in black or dark grey metallic looks like chain mail. Stud, armor, and heavy link effects are a natural fit here, scary elsewhere.
Dark Winter is mysterious. It’s Christmas Eve, the dark jewel-toned ornaments, the fireplace, the night, the lights in the windows. Very nice, but there’s something bigger going on. The feeling of waiting for something. Waiting for the reason behind the pretty. Deeper, even darker. Sinister.
Nude lips on Winter looks tired and old. Dead lips, a good friend calls it. My new favourite lipstick is Shiseido RD 305. It is just pink enough to not be red-lips. It is beautifully saturated with the touch of brown that Autumn adds to make your colours less cold and more natural than True Winter. That brown is essential to create the encompassing harmony that only a colour analyzed appearance can give. You are coloured with a little of that brown, where brown is dark orange, and your hair, skin, and eyes have some gold-amber-orange tones. If your skin is light to medium, this colour may be your best natural lip. It’s not dark, often the case with Dark Season lip colours. It’s fresh daytime believable natural lip colour. Not ready for it yet? Top it with clear gloss.
Bronzer can play a tiny part because Autumn has left behind the slightest texture or roughness. Contour carefully, with powder that has enough red to disappear into the skin (eleablake‘s Miss November is great). Follow the 3 shape at the sides of the face and down the sides of the nose bridge, using a small amount, more to carve more geometric drama into the face than to warm it up.
Soft Summer’s darker foundation trick to contour is too wishy-washy here. More colour is required to be noticeable and achieve the outcome. It’s not a bad option as you learn or if you want a very subtle effect, just be sure the darker powder is as cool as your foundation or you’ll look yellow. It takes a lot of colour to make any difference on the intensity of this inherent colouring. A few shades of beige this way or that will make less difference on Winter skin. Carefulness is plain pointless.
Darkness works. Smoke is natural, like the Autumn muting in the skin. Smoked eyes make sense. The lighter lid eyeshadow can equally well be fairly dark. Any Season can do smoked eyes, but it’s most at home on the Darks. Even the other two Winters are best to exercise caution in darkness so it doesn’t look heavy. They look better in clean and silvery.
True Winter: Ceramic
Even smoother and even harder.
True Winter: ceramic. Like a white sink. Impenetrable, tough, and enduring.
Clean. Picture the makeup colours from your palette painted right on that white sink. Dark eyes, red-violet cheeks, red-violet lips. No fuss, no frills. Not smoked (Dark Winter) or clear, as in translucent (Bright Winter). Can you tell this before they’re draped, by looking at them? Absolutely not. True Winter is always the draping surprise for me, even more so than Bright Spring.
For True Winter, that very quiet blanket of skin without a lot of cheek colour, or with an icy light cheek, is excellent, like the picture at the top. For Bright and Dark, colour on the cheek is better, I find. It adds to Bright’s liveliness and Dark’s intensity.
Eyeliner is dark. Eyeshadow is quite light and silvered. Under brow highlight is near white or some icy (near white) colour. Contour and back corner eyeshadow is quite dark. Darkening the outer back corner of eyes looks good as a way of adding drama. Use a dark gray/black eyeshadow. Go over the eyeliner to fill in holes. Drag the dark shadow out past the crease. Turn around and start pulling in inward above the crease, not in the crease. This enlarges the apparent size of the eye and recedes the skin above the crease that can close in. On eyes where the upper half of the lid is smaller than the lower half, the crease is shallow, or the eye prominent, you would omit this effect. Deposit some dark shadow at the outer lid corner.
Other Seasons will use a darker shadow that isn’t much darker than the lid colour or skip the effect altogether. On a Light Season, where dark colour takes off, the eyeshadow contour can just be the medium lid colour packed on a bit more heavily. On a Soft Season, the liner, lid, and contour are quite close in darkness level, as in medium, with contour only slightly darker. They distinguish their roles by being of different colours in similar darkness levels, rather than Winter’s variations on one colour (gray) in extremes of darkness levels. On a Winter, light means really light and dark means really dark. You are it already. So be it, as P. said so cleverly.
I do not know how bronzer can improve this face but I’m willing to see it if anyone has good products or ideas. You wouldn’t want to dull that spectacular opposition of The Purity and The Darkness that only this colouring incarnates.
Winter’s sheer is Spring’s almost-opaque. The best Winter gloss I can think of comes from Lora Alexander at Pretty Your World. The texture, finish, and amount of colour are excellent, with good clarity. Glama and Hot Lips lip colours and Fast Track blush are great (I own them). From this compare page of the Cool Winter selections, Diva looks super good too.
Though True Winter is very red-based and looks great in blue-based red apparel, I find their most natural fit for blush and lipstick is somewhere in the pink-fuchsia-purple spectrum. That may be because true red lips are like true black eyeliner, somehow harder and more dramatic than human faces really are. Dark Winter’s burnt rose red and Bright Winter’s strawberry or pink red alleviate the pure redness. True Winter does the same by using violet, meaning clear purpled pinks. Arbonne’s Raisin gloss is a very impressive purple. Lauder’s Raspberry Pop is good but gentler, as is Merle Norman’s Raspberry on Ice.
Bright Winter: Silicone
How about Bright Winter? That amazing special blend of innocence with a dark, brittle edge. The geisha could span the Bright Seasons. Once the delicacy feels almost too rare to conceive on this Earth, the hummingbird, a membrane-thin gold foil, we’re into Bright Spring.
Spring has a hand in Bright Winter. Therefore, we need a sugar coating, shiny, fun, and ornamental. Pink frosting on lids, cheeks, and lips, lilac highlights, more play (more colours at once), more theater (cat eye, a few false lashes, fine winged brows, bright lips, hats with veils, cloche hats with beautiful ornaments, because hats and earrings are face accessories). Below, the haircut, the dress print and line, all awesome.
Definitely a lighter palette than the other Winters.
The skin’s reflectance had me searching for an analogy. Fine china with that near-transparent edge? Thinking, thinking,…mostly Winter, therefore rubbery and even, but a little softer with a transparency in the outermost layer… oh, you’re going to love this, jellyfish! Not good? Soft boiled egg? Maybe. Yes.
But jellyfish is so good. Stay with me here.
The flamenco dancer.
Heavenly and magical.
You see where I’m going?
How do we translate this to makeup? You don’t have to do a lot, you have this smooth and rubbery (all Winters) clarity (Brights) already. Clear silicone skin. Increase it with intensely coloured products, pigments so pure, you would swear they’re transparent. Brush powders with the slightest finest shimmer effect on all exposed skin. Don’t stop at the jawline. It’s a sprinkling of fairy dust, that sugar topping, an overall crystalline effect.
Bronzer? A little icy gold uplight, sure. Baby peach, always good on Brights. Very little. We feel no bronzer per se here:
Chanel Glossimer in Jalousie is nice. Bagatelle is a light, pretty peach, Clarins Crystal Violet and Revlon Lip Butter in Raspberry Pie could be shared with True Winter. Stila Lipglaze Raspberry Crush is very good.
Recap: The skin is calm and even in colour and texture. By using strong lines, bold colours, intense pigment deposits, and big distance between light and dark, both adjacent and separate, we create very clear feature definition. There is no question about where one ends and the other begins.
For Summer, we said: The skin is soft and dry, setting up gentleness and gradual muting. The features are blended into the skin with colours that create a soft flow or diffusion instead of sharp definition. As colours flow into each other as hazy mists, it feels difficult to tell where one feature ends and the next begins.
For Autumn: The skin is contoured, setting up lowlights. The features are defined from the skin by colours that are warm and velvety and the judicious use of metallic glints.
This was Spring: The skin is dewy, setting up highlights. The features are fresh, lively, distinguished from the skin by being very colourful, moist, and vibrant.
I went to a meeting. As the women arrived, one woman distinguished herself immediately as a leader in any crowd. Her physical presence was noticed first because she was quite tall and strongly built. Her face was equally strong, in the colours of coffee, cream, and golden piecrust, with clove brown eyes. Wearing bronze eyeglass frames with copper glints, her only makeup a beautiful deep cinnamon lipstick, she was striking and beautiful.
She moved through the crowd with confidence. She had the business savvy to put in a plug for her company as smooth as could be. Her natural qualities of character were as manifest as her beauty. Her choices in clothing and jewelry, although of high taste and quality, were confusing.
Nobody is ever unattractive. Every woman is truly a beauty in her face and her heart and I can look straight in your eyes to say that. But there are better choices. Better ways to spend our money that look more truthful and less artificial. In a white dress with splashy flowers in primary colours, suddenly, the random blonde hits in her hair stood out as disorganized. The coloured glass bead necklace looked plastic because our energy modifies not only colour but also texture and everything else that comes near it.
In the white jacket, our needle skips into a groove of wondering about skin that’s seen too much sun. It’s uncomfortable now. We have thoughts we don’t want to have. During your colour analysis, we’re going to see what the drape colours do to your skin. We are equally going to observe what your own colours do right back to the drapes (and so to your clothes and jewelry choices). Next to our woman’s colouring, white ages her skin. She in turn alters simple white to become strident and look, well, a little cheap. Thoughts we don’t want to have.
We love this woman. It doesn’t feel right that we can’t settle in her presence but our visual system is on a roller coaster with too much to process. I’m always reminded of a light-coloured person wearing those Christmas sweaters in strong reds and greens with shiny ornaments appliquéd on the front. Like wearing garland. We’re feeling effort and distraction. Subconsciously, we’re scanning the room for somewhere easier to be. She is an Autumn, probably True Autumn, wearing colours and feelings made for another woman.
Where’s the balance? How can we know the way to enhancing what we are in a way that attracts people into our presence? By wearing the colours and lines that we are.
Soft Natural True Summer
One of our group wondered about a Polyvore using the True Summer palette, adapted for a Soft Natural body.
Classic bodies are people who are medium in their proportions, like me. Nothing really out of the ordinary, in the center of the National Standards charts. Natural bodies are similar, with a heavier bone structure and more muscular tendency. The other groups belong to those body shapes that strike you as ‘not average’. They are Dramatics (long and lean, Keira Knightley, or long and curvy, like Bond girls, Ursula Andress), Romantics (smaller curvy, like Adele) and Gamines (Mighty Mites). These are very loose versions of the 13 body types outlined in David Kibbe’s 1987 book, Metamorphosis. If you can find yourself, it is brilliantly good.
I am not brilliantly good at Kibbe’s interpretations. This is my take on SN. It won’t match anyone else’s.
Classics dress head-to-toe. Natural means separates.
No Croc, Brahmin, Python…Summer isn’t lizardy, futuristic, or obviously modernistic. Even on a Dramatic, they are more of a high breeding and ancestry group. Those other words are too cold and hard. They seem oily to me, moving into smarmy. Great on the right person though. We’re just looking for your normal. If you look like you’re wearing a costume, you’re in the wrong Kibbe and/or the wrong colours for you.
Choose coloured handbags. The choice in this item is endless. Gray or black ranges from sensible to serviceable to kind of depressing. Water colours, berry pinks, gorgeous blues, these are beautiful places to pick up the makeup colours. Trust me, we’ll see it, even in a fingernail. You would on someone else, right?
Summer skin is most beautiful when it’s smooth, silky, and dry. This colouring is not at its most beautiful glossy or frosty, slick or metallic, which boomerang us back to wet, cold, and hard.
True Summer skin’s way of handling light is the diffusion of moonlight. There, we can find no sun, no hardness, no glitz, no wetness. There’s no winking like fireflies (that’s Bright Spring), no sharp gleam of platinum (True Winter), no dew (Light Summer), not iron and lead (Dark Winter’s gray feelings), and on it goes. Moonlight is not blingy (that’s Bright Winter’s normal). Moonlight is very cool and very soft. In a morning sky, it’s a sheer cloud-white curtain moving in a breeze. At night, a cloak of pearly, silvery light.
Vision theory moment: Moonlight is a combined reflection of sunlight, starlight, and reflected earthlight. It is neither blue nor silvery. We have colour sensitive cone cells in the retina whose highest sensitivity is to yellow light. But when illumination levels are low, the cones fire less. We become almost colour blind. The very light-sensitive (but colour-insensitive) rods take over and they happen to create more impulses in response to blue and green wavelength light.
In the way of Summer skin to mirror the colours and textures it wears, it will shimmer in brushed silver. The way to iridescence in skin is in brushed shimmers in pink, lavender, or blue, since these are the notes found through the entire palette, including the grays. You look amazing. The shimmer is an even veil. Put a Winter in those colours and textures and you’re looking at the skin through a window that needs cleaning.
Even satined makeup requires caution. Satin on Summer skin can convert into cold and frosty because these colours are already so extremely cool and the complexion is delicate. On Winter skin, frost is just skin, in the same way that Winter’s so-white-it’s-blue white will be just-white on a Winter and aggressive-colour-under-oily-face on a Summer. Only you see your clothes on a hanger. The rest of us see them compared to your own colouring right under your face. Again, just looking for what looks like normal white on you.
Textile that mutes colour is effective. Not the stronger thicker textures of Autumn colours (and skin). This is the much softer side. Summer isn’t thick, straight, or hard. It’s swirly. Spring is sweet and scattered, moving towards pointy and buoyant. Summer is grounded. It sweeps like a porch swing, a branch in a breeze, the lines created when you pour liquid slowly into liquid. The Best Skin Finish on Summer Colouring: , dreamy, dreamy, dreamy. (Light, True, Soft )
Summer colours are light (compared to Autumn and Winter), cool, and soft. Summer surfaces look muted and lightweight (Spring, who goes from frothy to floating, is closer to weightless), with brushstrokes or a gently buffed texture. The softness is feathery. Fluffy is good. Downy is great. Good dreams have fleecy edges.
Shiny surfaces shift colour to appear lighter and brighter. That’s great on Spring but makes no sense with Summer’s colours. They don’t cooperate. Since those same colours exist in Summer skin, it won’t cooperate either. White feathers can be almost blue in moonlight but they’re never the colour of lightning (Winter).
The True Season Analysis
If you’re a True Summer, remember when the analyst saw that drape on you right at the beginning of the PCA and stopped for a minute? And changed drapes and went back to the silver, and kept going back to the silver without telling you why? She saw something. She didn’t move the drapes that way on your Bright Spring daughter.
Finally, she said, “I see today’s session is going to be a little different.” A True Season analysis is quite singular. In the True Summer silver drape, the face is perfect right from the start. Skin is evenly coloured. The eyes are so huge, you’ll think I’ve lost my marbles, I wonder if the colour analysts will recognize this, I am reminded of those glowy pearlescent white alien forms with great big eyes like from the Close Encounters movie. (Read the story – no accident that Spielberg put 6 year old ballerinas in those outfits. The man had a handle on Summer.) In some ways, with a True Season analysis, you begin at the end. Most remarkable, regardless of which of the 4 True Seasons you see.
More True Summer. They always look like this to me. The eyes are all you can see, the skin is so cool and quiet.
The Summer Skin Finishes
Integrating Summer into the Spring and Autumn we’ve already done,
Bright Spring: glass
True Spring: persimmon
Light Spring: petal
Light Summer: peach
True Summer: cotton
Soft Summer: flannel
Soft Autumn: suede
True Autumn: velvet
Dark Autumn: leather
>> paper to pearl
Use face powder. Translucent.
Use a foundation brush that makes the product a thin even layer. If I’ve applied your makeup, you know I’m selective in the extreme about where concealer goes and how foundation is applied. It’s fast and simple but there’s a way that I think works best.
What I don’t do for lack of time is follow with something I do on myself, and everyone could, which is to buff the skin a bit more. The Body Shop Extra Virgin Kabuki brush is my favorite (found it on beautypedia.com of course). It’s much too general to be the first foundation brush to my picky preference, but it leaves a superb buffed finish without moving the concealer and foundation from their zones.
The Shine Stopper at Paula’s Choice is very good. It works well on the T-zone.
The lips should look about like unpowdered, natural skin or just a bit shinier. Gloss = goop in a heartbeat. I’m not telling you to have powdery lips, just stay with reasonable, believable lip moisture, not a whole lot extra.
The colours of water are so important in True Summer – wear this type of jewelry, scarf, and movement near the face.
Navy mascara, soft not intense sapphire (Dior Icone Blue 268). Grey is hard to find, but the various Soft Blacks and Almost Blacks are fine. Black equals railroad tracks.
Stay with calm, fresh, gentle contrasts. Summer’s light colours are pastels, meaning more pigment than Winter’s light colours that are much closer to white. Avoid too much distance between lightest and darkest elements in hair, cosmetics, and clothes. Keep them closer together.
It’s quite important to settle in your mind how far from white your lightest colours are. Look at them and notice that it’s a long way to white from your coloured pastels for all three Summers. The eyeshadow highlight for Winter is some version of ice. On Summer, I use more colour under the brow bone, as muted (grayed) shell pink, where the amount of graying depends on the Season. True Summer might wear Merle Norman Ballerina, while Soft Summer could wear Merle Norman Mist.
Use eyeshadow instead of eyeliner or diffuse the liner well by applying shadow over it.
>> pearl to petal, as daisy, as butterfly wing. A little more fluff than Spring, a little more dry-down.
The True Summer section applies. There is more warmth here as a first warm weekend in May. Outdoor glows are great but controlled. A pale pink gold gloss or an uplight on the cheeks is plenty. You are a Summer, not a Spring, so restraint is needed. A May picnic isn’t the same as the beach in July. As a Neutral Cool colouring, remain cooler than warmer in everything you add. The Mineral Glow in Shimmer at e.l.f. is a nice choice without a lot of heat or a silly price.
On the Light Seasons, the lightest colour is plenty. The lightest application is plenty. The sheerest sheers will look so much younger. The blush by e.l.f. called Shy is one I love. It would set you back 2 whole dollars.
Face powder still applies. Use translucent, perhaps with a slight yellow tint.
Wondering what else to invest in at e.l.f.? Go to beautypedia.com. Click Search All Reviews. Choose Brand e.l.f. Cosmetics. Down in Skin type, click all the types. Down in Ratings, deselect all the boxes except Paula’s Pick on the left side. Why spend the same money and not get the best? Scan down the price column. Not bad. Now go back to the Search and select the Very Good box. 4 pages. Even better considering what’s coming next month.
The best makeup takes the lines and colours you already have and makes them more. It doesn’t work to superimpose someone else’s lines or colours on yours. Carol Tuttle of Dressing Your Truth taught us to consider the slant of a straight line drawn across outer – inner – inner – outer corners of our eyes. Position the outer corner of your eyeliner along that straight line.
The Spring stroke in Light Summer often places the outer corner higher than inner. Follow that. Don’t add cat eye effects unless you’re under 20, going to be in a music video, or are a Bright Winter Theatrical Romantic, and even then, it’s better in eyeglass frames than eyeliner.
Many True Summers have a very round eye, almost square. If the outer eye corner seems to pull downwards, then don’t extend the line at all, just keep it close to the rounded outer corner of the eye.
One of the many places to use concealer is to cover the red and/or downward crease at the outer corner of the eye. Blend the concealer up, not down. Everyone should do this. Nobody over 20 should use frost.
>> pearl to flannel
From our textures above, Soft Summer becomes more woven, drier, and thicker as we move deeper into Autumn. Cotton to waffle weave. Light Summer will wear L’Oreal Peony Pink lipstick, while Soft wears Spicy Pink.
Soft Summer is not the dustings of icing sugar or flour above. It’s a dusting of dust. Contour with powder 2 shades darker than foundation. It looks like believable sun without seeming dirty or yellow. Clinique Superpowder Double Face makeup in Matte Tawny 06 is an option. Your choice is still cooler than warm, like a foundation but a few shades deeper.
Use it as contour, as we began discussing in the Autumn article previously. That means in a 3 shape around the forehead, where the bone is most prominent, around the temple, under cheekbone so the blush can be blended above it and nearer the midline, and a little under the jaw. If the nose shape is not sharp, add second contour by beginning at the inner corner of the eye and go down the sides of the nose bridge, just off the midline, not down on the nostril. The deeper eyeshadow that goes above the crease is diffused away as it approaches the midline, at a level about where this second contour placement would go if extended under the eyebrow.
During the cosmetic colour section of your PCA, we focus on what right colour looks like on your skin. I really want you to see someone very new to you and also, that when cosmetic colour is correct, you can apply it and pack it on and apply more. It just melts into the skin. You can be a lot less careful than you’re used to with wrong colours. Some steps are left out for lack of time and small learning opportunity. Lipliner is one. I never use coloured lipliner anyway. I use a clear sealant to keep lipstick in place. Paula’s Choice makes a great one. The Lip Lock pencil at e.l.f. is another.
The cosmetic selections for Soft Summer are unlimited. You could fill pages and pages. At e.l.f., the Mineral Blush in Plum mixed with Pink or Joy to get the right darkness level, looks like it would be pretty.
For eyeshadow, look at the Endless Eyes Pro Mini in Everyday. You won’t use them all but for $5, it’s almost ridiculous.
On Summer, application is gentle and swirly. There are so sharp lines or edges.Diffuse one product into the next. The canvas is drier, using powder to ensure that products don’t catch and jump. If using cream products, apply them to the skin before the powder so they appear from within.
Recap: The skin is soft and dry, setting up gentleness and gradual muting. The features are blended into the skin with colours that create a soft flow or diffusion instead of sharp definition. As colours flow into each other as hazy mists, it feels difficult to tell where one feature ends and the next begins.
For Autumn: The skin is contoured, setting up lowlights. The features are defined from the skin by colours that are warm and velvety and the judicious use of metallic glints.
This was Spring: The skin is dewy, setting up highlights. The features are fresh, lively, distinguished from the skin by being very colourful, moist, and vibrant.
When I wrote the articles about True Season children two years ago for a previous blog, there was no Autumn article because I didn’t know any Autumn kids to watch. I still don’t know many. I know many Autumn grownups these days. They’re so levelheaded, so reasonable, that it’s hard to think of those elaborate parts of their character that can be quirky or funny. To them, what is, is. Not more, not less.
They’re like everything that’s great about trees and home baking. Not fancy or fussy, I love their company so much for the WYSIWYG, sound, comfortable, real-world advice they offer. Their constancy and durability give us a feeling of people who are extremely trustworthy, reliable, and rock-steady. There’s no zigging and zagging.
gentle eyes, a soft face, perhaps some Summer; she could even be a Soft Summer but the eyes look too orange
Capable. This is the kid you want yours to be with if they go horseback riding. If yours falls off and is having wrist issues, the Autumn child can catch both horses, lead them home, find a grownup or a phone, call the parents, and get the right kind of help.
Life goes smoother if the other kids could just agree with them. There may be no physical attacks but there will be direct words spoken and order imposed. She’s doing the talking at the lemonade stand. Not bossy, not show-off, just doing the job.
Least likely to be picked on. Assertive from an early age.
dark but somehow soft (muted actually) ; the strong facial lines, smile lines
True and Soft are social, not solitary. Dark may isolate himself more and talk to dolphins while all the other kids are trying to tip the raft. Winter needs time apart.
Might be stocky or sturdy, especially the boys, and boy, can they eat. Regardless, boy or girl, these children are strong and willing to use their strength. They are powerful athletes and real survivors. Their stamina and endurance stays with them into adulthood as 50 year olds who can still outskate all the kids in pond hockey.
someone was smart when they put him in orange; notice the orange tones in the hair and a very strong face, even for a baby
When the Soft Autumn child tells a story, the emotions involved will be inflated higher than anyone else’s version because their Summer-ness felt them so deeply. The Dark Autumn child will have more worries about the events in the story and their meanings and repercussions. The Winter in him will keep him worrying about it for days. The True just tells it like it is. The most exaggerated thing about this person is that they have no exaggerations.
Need time to process surprises and really wishes you wouldn’t. His Spring sister’s idea of euphoria would be a surprise a minute.
building, digging, stacking, carrying, exotic eyes, Carol’s T3 defined points at the outer eye corners (from Dressing Your Truth)
They must have their own experience of something to change their mind. They are the original can’t-tell-them-anything kids.
strong and striking, Autumn and Winter ; not romantic or cute (Summer and Spring)
The Autumn child is straight up. He doesn’t conceal, cannot deceive. He’s not a jokester and is never devious. His Spring brother, who takes life less seriously and has a big imp streak, has figured out that when Mom’s on the phone, he can climb out a window, double back around the house to the kitchen, and sneak his fifth Popsicle of the afternoon. The Autumn child might walk very quietly into the kitchen, but if noticed and asked, would be compelled to admit “5″.
Spring fills us with the wonder of the moment. It is immediate. Summer is the cradle that keeps us safe while pushing us to meet our highest potential. Winter symbolizes mental capacity, to reason, to rationalize. Autumn is the work we do on Earth, to enrich, to build, to create, to leave something better than we found. Autumn completes our wholeness as the power of the physical body, inseparable from emotion (Summer), spirit (Spring), and logic (Winter). Without the balance between them, we cannot heal ourselves because each one is assaulted when the other feels injury. We also cannot fulfill our human potential. We cannot have been put on Earth with the abilities we have to live as cavemen. We must be here to live up to a higher ideal. The pendulum between the four powers sways but our answers are not behind us. Once we learn our center as a humanity by respecting all four energies equally, we will find a sustainable way of living and the answers to longevity.
Sensible, practical, no-nonsense, peaceful. Harrison Ford. Martin Sheen. Their steadiness makes them shoe-ins for feel-good TV presidents. The Summer contribution of do-the-right thing to Autumn’s save-the-day strength.
The Dark Autumn boy will explain, indeed expound, actually expostulate, on his topic, with no awareness that nobody has had a chance to speak for 20 minutes. The Dark Autumn man is not very different, but he speaks more slowly so he has time to formulate his thoughts. He is the professor to Dark Winter’s philosopher.
strong and capable at every age
What happens when a Summer and Autumn live together? Felix&Oscar.
Soft Autumn’s husband asks that you not tell her that a family member is in personal crisis or he’ll be sent back to the Farmer’s Market. The rest of his morning will be spent making ham sandwiches. He already delivers an asparagus quiche to the Art Gallery once a week. She combines Summer’s love and upstanding decency and Autumn’s foot on the gas to nurture the entire world.
True and Dark Autumn will be on time. Let’s get to it. Then we go on to the next job, though we tell ourselves we’re going to rest. We can chat after, but I won’t be late for my next appointment or make you late for yours.
If a client has all her children colour analyzed, she could be a True Autumn. She sees the sense and the savings, and is completely open to change. Light Spring will do the same, a mix of her Summer desire to make her family happy and her Spring enthusiasm when she spots a good thing. They will adopt their new palettes very quickly, without Winter’s tendency to contest or Summer’s to resist.
hazy eyes, hushed skin, a future Soft Autumn
If it’s a plain and honest opinion you want, go shopping with an Autumn. Summer’s deep streak of kindness will embellish with the compliment, any compliment. If you’re ok with the cold-blooded comment, a Winter can tell you that your suit is fine if you don’t mind looking like a birthday cake. And then you say to them “Now, how would you feel if someone spoke to you that way?” And they say “Fine. I wouldn’t care.” They’re telling the truth. They are thick-skinned (so they balance matte and opaque cosmetics), while Summer is thinner-skinned, as sensitivity of skin and emotion, as wearing a softer, lesser pigment deposit (so tinted moisturizers), as being more touchy of feeling internally and of texture externally, as tactile, with highly developed brain-hand connections and sense of touch. Summer skin is soft matte. Spring’s looks best dewy. Just as everyone’s busy is different, everyone’s Golden Rule comes out different but it’s still the same rule. Winters should shop with other Winters. Buy them the book Getting To Yes for Christmas. It will help them in life. The kindness of Summer and sweetness of Spring might see this Winter, meaning me and only me, as having the heart of that first cockroach that crawls out of a nuclear accident zone. On the other hand, I won’t tell you 3 months later that I really didn’t love you as a blonde but didn’t want to hurt your feelings, knowing what that hair cost you and all.
Dark Autumn brings in Winter’s flash. Whether Gamine, Classic, or Natural, words like Dramatic and Flamboyant will apply. Getting out oh the car, she will not come across as medium. Something is extraordinary and exaggerated – height, hair thickness, texture, and length, snap in her character, or embers for eyes. Julia Roberts may be Dark Autumn, Bianca Jagger, Dark Winter, perhaps both Flamboyant Naturals. The Dark Autumn will reveal or release much more of herself, while the Winter will keep larger parts of herself locked down.
The three Autumn groups look rightest in brown eyeshadow and liner because brown is dark orange and orange, gold, rust, etc. are cornerstones of Autumn. The only other great one for brown eyeshadow is True Spring. Everyone else is better in their grays.
Autumn’s face (left) speaks to us of resilience, bravery, and grit, in colours that are darker and more muted than the lighter, brighter skin on the right; Summer on the right is dreamy and swoopy – on both girls, gorgeous base hair colours for Soft/True Autumn and Light Summer
Will promote what she believes in gladly. She told every one of her True Autumn friends that some of the best makeup colours around are at Dressing Your Truth online store for Type 3. The three lip glosses just glow with rich warmth. And an Autumn pink eye shadow, you’d find that nowhere. Then there’s, the jewelry! She saved hours with the 6 pages of superb choices at the store. She thought about all her outfits and chose what would complete each. (Her Spring daughter just bought everything she liked, with no planning at all, figuring it would all work out. Imagine that.) To express her traces of Summer or Winter, a Soft and Dark Autumn resepectively might look at the Type 2 (Summer according to me, not to the folks at DYT) and Type 4 (looks Winterish) accessories. Since both SA and DA are Neutral Seasons, they can be flattered by silver and gold. A Soft Autumn looks great wearing Autumn colours in Summer’s way (analogous, flowing, floral, soft). Dark wears her palette in Winter’s way (bold, more contrast). So integrate your smaller contributing Season by wearing their style in jewelry with clothing and makeup in the colours and style of your own Season.
Soft Autumn, try out Lancome RIL 230M and 240M, your natural lipcolour is one of these or in between. Also NARS Mayflower lips, Body Shop 11 and 07 lipstick, and MUFE RAI 19 (for TA too) lipstick.
On Dark Autumn, NARS Pigalle, MUFE HD8 blush, Lauder Maple Sugar and Rich Currant lips. A good, dark,warm, barely muted blue eyeliner is Revlon Colorstay pencil in Navy. Dark Winter could wear this very well too as they have warm tones in hair and eyes.
True Autumn : MUFE HD10 blush, Givenchy Gold Brown lips (really nice, this lipstick, but sample it at Sephora first, big $$).
Three years ago, I posted a series of articles on my then-blog, A Greener Tea. These descriptions of behaviour patterns in True Season children are funny to read now. They should be part of the body of 12B (just strikes me that one could read 12B as “One to be.”), with some added observations about the adults they become.
Stereotypes are patterns that got noticed. There is no doubt for me that our colour genetics, body geometry genetics, and personality genetics are often transcribed together.
There might be some things you recognize. Don’t take anything personally. Remember that we are beings in perfect balance. Our negatives are simply the other extreme of our positives.
still, not manic, hard to take your eyes off the face with its ability to dominate all other colours in the photo
The drama and the trauma. Will not be controlled by parents, siblings, or anyone else. Cannot be approached with judgment. If that Spider Sense even twitches, in their either/or world, they’ll react like they’ve been attacked. There are no in-betweens here. Criticism isn’t taken well. Advice is best given in a very generic way, referring to someone out there who could possibly try to do the thing differently but of course, it would be up to them.
The power and the glory. Emotionally brutal. Can be single-mindedly intense adults once an idea takes hold.
Don’t care if they ride on the Children’s Camp float in the Old Home Week parade. But if they do, will ask why they can’t have a float of their own. Don’t need to be on stage but are compelling to watch once they’re there.
a beautiful face whose colouring would overpower anything dusty
May appear cool and detached, but often beset with worry. Simultaneous inferiority and superiority complexes.
The opposite of nurturing. It’s all about them. Ask her how her hair turned out today and she’ll tell you for half an hour. Might notice if you have hair for 2 seconds but wouldn’t have much to say about it.
Physically interesting to watch. Will choose furs, sparkles, satin, diamonds, you get the idea. Stock up on glitter. Boys look very good in dark suits and have the body carriage to pull off the look. Strike statue poses just buttering toast.
If she’s suffering, you’ll know about it. She’s in control (while Summer is in order) and she’s taking you down with her. The True Winter husband is much the same.
Have high expectations of what others should take from them (as opposed to Summer’s high expectations of what others should expect of themselves).
a lot of colour in a face that looks more determined than gentle – a present or future Dark Winter?
Intensely creative. So perfectionist that they get in their own way.
True Winter is all about the opposite extremes. The recluse and the performer at once. Either they’re running a marathon or sitting on the couch eating pizza by the box, watching every season of The Biggest Loser. She somehow manages to be still as a statue and create drama all around her.
True Winter will sit immobile in the vet’s waiting room with their small dog, waiting to be called. She’s like a tuning fork, creating powerful vibration from slightest motion. Bright Winter will fidget a bit more, and when someone new arrives, her eyes dart to the door. The Dark is reading or typing, focused as a drill, her Autumn infusion putting time to use, feeling no remorse about ignoring everyone on behalf of productivity.
The wonderful Bernice Kentner of CMAS said, “If you want a job done fast, ask an Autumn. If you want a job done well, ask a Summer.” Bernice is so smart. And, we could add, “If you want a Winter to do a job at all, there better be something in it for them.”
focused and detached
A True Winter will arrive on time. There will be drama. She will have found some way to wear makeup to her colour appointment. There will be high heeled knee high boots, big belts and rings, a personality too big for the body, and dissection at every step of the process. Winter has to see her PCA with her own eyes or she will never be convinced. But once she sees it, she is not likely to question it again…though Autumn is even less likely to dwell.
A Dark Winter’s husband, like many husbands, might discover more right brain in his forties. His attempt to talk about, gulp, feelings, meets with “Yeah, whatever, I was trying to talk to you about emotions ten years ago. Pass me that calculator, would you? Nevermind your fuzzy feelings here.” from his ever-loving wife.
silent drama…would Carol call him Type 2? Outer eye corners swoop down, corners of mouth lift up making an S curve along lips, S curves from brow to nostril…there is softness in a dark and contained face. Perhaps a Dressing Your Truth Type 4/2?
Dark Seasons are the analytical processors more so than the emotional ones. They don’t tear easily, seldom cry. Faced with what seems to be excess emotion, they wait it out and only wade in if they have to.
Winter has no trouble getting rid of great Grandma’s plate collection that Mom passed on to her. She’s doing well to visit Mom or phone Grandma. Makes her connections so deeply that she can appear not to have any.
any Season can have blue eyes, light in the Lights, hazy in the Softs, greenish (teal or turquoise) in the True Warms, and intensely coloured in the Winters
Wakes up in the morning thinking “Nobody’s going to tell me what I can and can’t do.” Consider the Summer’s morning greeting of “If I’m kind to others, they’ll be kind to me.”
Can learn to soften their edges by impersonating a Summer when they feel the tension climbing…and be surprised at how much better the interaction went.
Bright Winter is amazing. As a child, the other girls were doing rond-de-jambe at the ballet barre while she was hanging upside-down by her knees. Today, she’s driving halfway across the country dragging a U-Haul, meeting a plane full of houseguests. She’s building an agility course for her dog and adding a new wing to start a home business. She moves from big thing to big thing, changing direction, keeping her foot on the gas. Her internal GPS recalculates fast. She believes the book entitled “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff – And It’s All Small Stuff.” In her Winter take it or leave it world, she doesn’t carry a lot of mind clutter. Maybe that’s why she looks better without a lot of clothing clutter.
Looks so good when she wears makeup to separate the features from the face – eyebrows, eyes, cheeks, lips, contour lines. Forget about traditional nudes and flesh tones, they’re as exciting as a dial tone compared to fuchsias, cherries, and pomegranates, especially if you’re over 25. Sheer products are a place to start. They’re not a place to stay. This colouring is extreme and can’t be turned down. Indeed, it will turn the makeup down. All Winter can control, balance, even suppress colour causing heathered makeup to look yet greyer and disappeared in 2.2 minutes. Soft/dusty/blended = meek/lacking/vague on a colouring whose perfection hinges on very opposite concepts.
All Winter may have trouble finding saturated blush colours.
True Winter should look at MUFE HD2 and Clarins lipstick in Mystic Plum. Lancome Rouge In Love 379N is also great as a purple but those are easier to find; 185N is a great blue-based berry pink.
Bright Winter on the cool side would like the same MUFE HD2 blush. Lancome Clock Strikes 12 is a mid-grey eyeshadow that could work on all 3 Winters.
Dark Winter could look at lipsticks 22, 21, and 14 at the Body Shop. 21 is my favorite of the moment, not too dark, on the warm side, a great match with eleablake‘s Driven blush, these are the barely golden saturated coral reds that look so incredibly good on this colouring, among their best summertime colours.
A reminder that I will not be shipping the book, Return to Your Natural Colours, in the month of July. If you’re in the US, Kerry at Indigo Tones may have some copies. Otherwise, best to wait till August.
Here is an actress I greatly admire. Although she was a beautiful Juliet Capulet opposite diCaprio’s Romeo, when I really took notice and have loved her since was in Stage Beauty.
I’ve also come to understand that we express more than colour. We express line, pattern, and motion. You can’t just wear your colours, though no others on Earth could flatter you better. If the style does not respect your lines, patterns, and movements, harmony continues to elude.
That Dramatic True Summer was very worryingly difficult, so I’m trying an easier combination today, the Soft Autumn Natural. It came back to me that colour felt worryingly difficult in the beginning too. Having a real woman in mind gave me an endpoint I could envision and taught me how the Seasons’ colours work together to make a picture. With each woman whose colours I analyzed, I could write the articles and start seeing the similarities. I’ll have to learn Kibbe that way too. By holding Claire in my head, the need for length past the hip in a jacket becomes clear.
Kibbe’s book is the only personal style book that I can get to work on me and others. Indulging my love of an adjective, it is comfortably organized, ergonomically specific, and reliably stratified. And reproducible! Using his system, five people should come up with the same style answer for a given person. Kibbe’s translation of a very abstract thought system is linear and logical.
I’m a beginner. I need to start with easy pictures and lists. If we set out discussing tempering chocolate, I will never produce a chocolate cake. If the idiosyncrasies of different analysts’ tastes come into the picture too early, I’ll get confused because I won’t be able to tell them apart from the basic truths that really do apply to me.
I also think his 13 types is complete and enough. It just takes time to figure out what he means by certain terms and descriptions and to get a sense of the relative differences between the groups. Like, what exactly is a straight skirt? Of the 3 types with small rounded facial bones, whose are the most small and round?
Soft Autumn Is
In 12 Season personal colour analysis, ‘Season’ describes a type of natural colouring. In a Soft Autumn, all the colours that make up the body, skin, hair, eyes, maybe veins, teeth, inner lips and cheeks, and internal organs for all I know, are:
- muted, soft, heathery, so slightly calmed by a murmur of grey
- warmed quite a lot, as every colour appears in a late afternoon sun on a day with a little overcast
- fairly light to medium dark, no extremes like black and white
Looking at the person, you see the colours all at once like when the swatch book is fanned out. The feeling is affectionate, safe, restrained, sensitive, mellow, supple, and sympathetic. Words like strident belong somewhere else.
Kibbe’s Natural Is : “Girl Next Door Chic”, “Losbter Party hostess”.
He also has a Flamboyant Natural – who’s the modern version of Carly Simon…Miley Cyrus could be FN. With her bigger body, broader facial bones, smaller eyes, I wonder also about Andie McDowell (not a Soft Autumn).
And there’s a Soft Natural category…the Olsen twins?
- soft and round edged geometric shapes ; slight oversize/unstructured
- earthy materials, slightly chunky
- outline relaxed, straight, narrow, loose, soft tailored
- textured fabrics; glitz at night
- detail minimal, simple neckline, open neck, soft shoulder
- mostly separates, mixing pattern texture colour
- color pizzazz, break the rules mix n match, neutrals with texture
- circle, swirl, ornate, sharp, severe, fiddly
- sheer, clingy, flimsy, restrictive
- cropped, monochromatic
SA N Separates
- relaxed straight lines? yes, pretty good
- bold and direct? I think so, enough anyway.
The hard part: keeping colour zippy and colour combinations energized. I even consulted Kobayashi’s Color, Image, Scale, best colour combinations ever, and didn’t have much luck getting pink beige into any snappy colour combinations without losing my Soft Autumn vibe.
Like: that it feels tight in style, not just colour. I don’t look at any item and think “Why in the world would that be there?” These could all live in one woman’s closet.
The Hair Style
I quite like chin length hair on Claire. If the bob were not severe, keeping to the idea of rounded edges that are a little fluffed, perhaps this?
The Hair Colour
Highlights, bleach, or any kind of processing that is obvious will feel forced instead of being true to the feeling of naturalness that an N emanates.
Though Hollywood advice to Soft Autumns appears to be that blonde is necessary, it is never the best choice for the skin, whether she’s an N or not. The natural colour is usually medium-dark warm-ash brown. Very medium in colour. If the texture is also without body or definition, the hair feels left behind once the woman is dressed and made up. Consider a colour that is one shade lighter and a fair bit warmer than the natural colour.
JLo Lite, like what’s at the ends of the hair. Golden Blonde before anyone would call it red.
Jennifer Lopez Pictures
SA N Makeup
Natural means the no-makeup look, which can still require a good bit of makeup to achieve. The movie makeup and hair artists in the poster at the top did a pretty good job.
Try these and let us know what you think:
Bronzer: Urban Decay Baked
Blush: Mercier Rose Bloom
Eyeliner: Urban Decay Stash
Eyeshadows: NARS Portobello, Key Largo, Blondie
Lipstick: Givenchy gloss Delectable Brown
Which brings up the interesting question of what a SA Dramatic would wear.
Other SA Kibbegories
C. had a lovely idea, comparisons. Katrina did just that with a SA Romantic and it’s brilliantly good.
Here is Jen’s Romantic Soft Autumn. We know with colour that two women of the same Season will interpret their palettes very differently in the items they choose to buy, how they colour their hair, or wear their makeup. The same applies to Kibbegories. We still retain every bit of our individuality. Our creativity is simply more focused and our visual voice is so much more beautifully coherent.
If you did a Polyvore of another Kibbegory, please post links in the Comments. We’d love to see it.
Please allow me first to introduce Tricia, the woman who created these colour collections. Her ability to re-invent herself and hit the target with beautifully convincing and tasteful precision astounds me.
I asked Trish to tell you a bit about herself:
I am 35, I live on the Wirral peninsular, UK. I have a background in Biology and used to be a Infant School Teacher. My first choice of career at the age of 7 was a Make-up artist (after realising that I’d never be either a Ballerina or a Princess). I had my own make-up kit since I was about 5 and have always enjoyed giving my friends make-overs. I have a life-long interest in style anlaysis, colour analysis and make-up and plan to qualify with Colour me Beautiful this summer.
My Colour analysis journey began in 2007, when I decided that my dark Gothic look was not doing anything for me, and my interest on Vintage style clothing was growing. After reading all the available literature I could get my hands on I came to the conclusion that I was Clear Winter, which I confirmed with a CMB Analyst. The transition to colour has been fairly easy for me, but the hardest part has been accepting my yellow overtones and incorporating Spring’s warmth in to my palette e.g. I stopped dying my hair blue-black and retuned to my natural dark ash brown, I swapped my pale-pink setting powder which was made my skin look pallid, for a icy-yellow shade which added back the natural bright tone. I also experimented with peachy-pink blush and lipstick which I found suited me far better than the cool blue-pinks, plums and mauves I had been wearing (which made my skin look ashen!). A huge wrench for me was to drop the Vampy burgundy lipsticks in favour of bright pinks and reds which make my skin sparkle. I am still learning and each day I seem to learn new things about colour, which is one reason I find this subject so fascinating.
The Warm Palettes
In the previous post, we saw neutral (meaning browns and greys) and coloured eyeshadow and blushers for the Summer and Winter types of natural colouring, or Seasons. In this post, Tricia has assembled the same groups of colours for the warm Seasons of Spring and Autumn.
MAC products were used to create these sets. If you would like to know the details of a particular colour, please post a note in the Comments and Tricia will be glad to answer. She also has lists of many equivalents from MAC to Pretty Your World, Lora Alexander’s simply fabulous line of colour-analyzed cosmetics for the 12 Seasons. PYW eyeshadows are pure silk, as are the blushes, and you can compare a particular colour from Trish’s 4 Season groupings to where Lora placed it among the 12.
The Autumn blushes are called Sculpt, Taupe, and shaping powders which we’ve inserted here as Tricia acquires more of the colourful Autumn blush choices. These seem as if they could be used as excellent contours and sculptors by numerous types of colouring, with warmer and cooler choices. As great flesh tones, they remind me very much of the light and dark colours Kevyn Aucoin used to demonstrate where to place these products on a face to create a most incredible facial shaping, forming, and chiseling in his essential book Making Faces. The book can be bought anywhere. That image can be seen here, though the colours are more intense in the book.
Remember that there are many colours you could wear in addition to these. You may prefer a more colourful blush effect or a more natural or sculpted face. Look at these palettes and think about why Tricia included each colour where she did and what her vision of these Seasons might be. In the end, it’s your vision of your Season that will develop and mature, influenced by everyone else’s input, and finalized with your own.
Eyeshadow is the one cosmetic product that I find can be matched to the Colour Books without smearing it out on paper or on your face. How much eyeshadow can you really apply to your eyelid in one shopping session, let alone truly know if it suits you? Impossible. This is a product worth learning to judge from the pan.
Like every other aspect of choosing your most beautiful colours, recognizing your best eye makeup depends in large part on recognizing everyone else’s too, at least in a general sense.
Tricia Bratley is a (trust me) beautiful (shockingly so and I’m going to prove it in the next post) Bright Winter. She lives on the Wirral Peninsula in the NW U.K. And she loves makeup, all makeup, not just her own Season’s, in which she is most accomplished. Tricia assembled the palettes you see below, took the photos, and so graciously sent them to me to share with you.
This series sets Summer and Winter neutral (as in grays and taupes) eyeshadows, colour eyeshadows, and blushers, adjacent. Within each palette of eyeshadows, you may find options for the three Seasons within each True Season, but Tricia focussed primarily on the True Summer and True Winter when she organized these collections.
These palettes consist of MAC colours. If you have any questions about specific pans, please post them in the Comments and Tricia will come in and answer.
These photos are so good that there is nothing I can add. Enormous thanks to Tricia for her work and her generosity
Never fear, the True warm Seasons are next.
Many people have no interest in their colours, but not just blandly so. They’re defensively so. They don’t mind being advice about other fashion guidelines but they do not want to be told there are certain colors that might not be best for them. Why colour? Because colour gets below the surface. Colour gets into the hard-wiring. There’s more at stake if you let someone in. Let’s spend some time in Dark Winter’s personal space.
Ellen Page is an example of a very commonly seen Dark Winter face. Autumn’s squaring of jaw is often present (True Winter’s is longer and narrower, like Cher) but the colouring is cooler and clearer than Dark Autumn. The trace of Autumn heat is surely here in the hair, eyes, and skin unless the person is quite close to True Winter.
Sure, she could be a Bright or any Season for that matter, but this face is the dance of Dark Winter to me. This is the very rare client that gets out of the car and I have to fight with myself not to push her into the one Season that’s fairly singing its own name. This is a far more difficult analysis, with much more second thinking, than with a person whose natural colouring group is less obvious.
And God love the girl for the natural hair and brows. She looks strong, young, healthy, and smart. The blue in the eye makeup isn’t blue enough to say BLUE EYE PAINT and it complements the orange tones in the eye. I think she looks simply great and you know how much it takes for me to say that. As women, we lose the sense of this being enough. We need to manipulate as if media’s solutions could make it better. Learning to see what is right in front of us as special is the PCA version of living in the moment.
I see this face over and over in Dark Winter. The size of Winter, fathomless and colossal as a galaxy, the space they need and demand, with the human warmth, the comfortable welcome, and the great generosity of Autumn. Tell me this is not (Sci\ART analyst) Maytee Garza‘s face.
Some Dark Winters have a longer face or softer colouring or lighter eyes, lots of variations. Some have a more gamine feel, like Victoria Beckham or Winona Ryder. We don’t do colour analysis based on these traits but every type of natural colouring repeats certain facial features a lot.
I talk about liking lips with colour more on Winters than the erased lip that mostly looks good on the almost-children in magazines. A young Winter is an exception. Even in her medium pinks and purples, there’s so much colour already that she can look like she’s dressing up as Mom. An icy lipgloss can really be great (Bobbi Brown Sugar Lilac – I’m pretty sure that’s the name. It looks more iced violet than grey in the tube.). Not pastel (more greyed, there’s tons of these frosty greyish pinks, don’t buy them). Not medium darkness, should go on very light. Icy is hard to find but it’s good. More age appropriate, conveys a coolness, and better at letting the beauty of the face speak for itself without cosmetic getting in the way, which is the best kind of beauty and the best use of cosmetics.
I tried to do a Polyvore. And failed. I couldn’t even get a single one together. I’ve seen what’s there too many times. Going to try something new. For those who have, or will have, my book, you’ll see a section in each of the Season chapters that describes how I see the colour palette being used to best effect. Dark Winter is the first chapter we talk about so let’s begin with it here.
For me, these colours have an austerity, perhaps because they are dark and cold. They feel serious. Soft effects (draping, smocking, cute collars, floppy bows and sleeves, unfinished edges) or busy details (wildly random prints, buttons and stuff for no reason like insets or logos, tons of ruching), styles that show a lot of skin (because sex and power are opposite currencies, the more of one, the less of the other. Dark Winter is the oldest soul Season and look better dressed more quietly, as the philosophers they so often are), clothes that seem too big (batwing and dolman sleeves, shapeless) – well, you can read the book but I don’t care for this on a Dark Winter. This person takes all that and makes it look unimportant, trite, and fussy. Peter Pan collars belong in Spring’s Neverland for a reason. On someone else, those styles can be flattering, slimming, and fabulous. On Dark Winter, it looks like those projects where your kids took your antique silver vase to school and brought it back with beads and macaroni glued all over it.
I’ve had Dark Winters see their palette and hear the way I see the colours interpreted on this person and feel un-represented. They wanted Bright Winter. They say “Oh, but I love colour!” Believe me, colour analysts are not trying to tell you not to wear colour. We are trying to help you avoid colours that make your face look oily, old, heavy, and unevenly pigmented. As pretty as a colour is, it won’t be so pretty after that happens. Wear YOUR colours any way YOU see them. Could you meet me halfway and say that Mrs. Obama might not be doing herself favours in frosted coral eyeshadow, peacock blue eyeliner, and hot fuchsia lips? Even one at a time, she is not that person, regardless of her position in the world.
I tried to keep the negatives out of the book, but with maturity comes an easier acceptance that every quality we have is in equal measure our flaw. We will excel and surpass at some things, which must be balanced by those places where we are weaker. This is a self-contained individual, not one who shares a lot of the internal stuff or leans on others easily. Some have incredible intensity, far more than the situation warrants, while some are much more passive. Once the cage is rattled, the fun times are over, because once they let go…Dark Winter draws a very clear line at anything that smells like B.S. Unlike the Summers, they will not necessarily keep your feelings safe. In colour, this translates as heavy, humorless, dark, unfriendly, morose, somber, and solemn. Don’t email me to say that this vision is grim and depressing. I’ll email back to say that your interpretation forgot the counterbalances that the hawk brings to the kingdom. Piercing focus, deep introspection, and the majestic, solitary stand-apart-ness that gets noticed first.
There is a core of stillness and hardness in Winter people. You can feel the steel rod down the center, and if tested, it will not bend, no matter how lightweight they seem on the surface. The palpable presence of that steel rod is the source of the strong vertical line element that I find works so well in the appearance of Dark Winter clothing. I think many of them sense this hard place too and translate it as “Earth”, that type of un-movable rock-solid center. For me, Earth energy (and I’m not an energy specialist) means secure comfortable homey regular everyday practical common-sense resilient considerate fair. That’s not Winter, that’s Autumn. Perhaps my misunderstanding, since analysts I respect enormously (Angela Wright in The Beginner’s Guide to Colour Psychology) attribute earth to Winter, where the world turns into itself, gathering power from the earth for the coming growing season, and the person of that colouring is similarly inwardly directed. I feel Winter’s need for big elbow room more strongly and feel an air association, as in space rather than breeze or wind.
At the center of Winter is a titanium wire – wait, this is Dark Winter, make that a tungsten cable. Its strength is not in Autumn’s sturdy squareness, but rather in its thin linearity. Winter is the conflict, even the contradiction, of everything and nothing, black and white, playing themselves out at the same time. Winter is the superstar who never feels good enough, who thinks herself a loser. In True Winter, where the polarities are most widely apart, the line between the two becomes thinnest, near invisible, just a fold in a force field. You can feel the hinge but you can’t see it, like the flip side that must always be, eternal and joined as matter and anti-matter.
From the book, the section is here:
- Black + white + a third colour block from the palette
- A medium-dark to very dark colour (or black) + a white or an icy colour
- A medium-dark to very dark colour (or black) + a brighter colour from the palette
- A neutral (grey, brown, or black) + one other colour + possible third colour in small area
- Two dark colours of the same or analogous colours
- Two colour maximum, where black, white, black-navy, black-brown, and neutrals count as colours. Third colour possible, as small area only, in an accent or accessory item.
- Overall medium-dark to dark effect
(Note: For the equations above, and those in the following Seasons, the terms light, medium, and dark signify the darkness level within the palette itself, not on a full white to black scale.)
From the top graphic:
Your hair and makeup are already a colour. When you look at others, you register every colour, meaning them plus their stuff. Chemical hair colour and makeup already add a lot of colour activity for the viewer’s eyes. Clothes and jewelry beyond that and the eye has nowhere to land, nowhere to focus, and nowhere to rest. Dark Winter looks good with a lot of still territory. Gray, white, black. Perhaps the lipstick in the tuxedo image (#1) is enough, imagining in the earrings, hair, and eye colour adding three more colours.
#2: We’re always needing big separation between lightest and darkest. And an overall dark look.
The red and navy (#3) – feel how much more energy there is just by adding the blue. That navy is so close to black but it feels a lot busier. Not wrong, might be great in your eye, just a different feel. Anything added would be white, gray, black.
When the lower block changes to black, it’s such a small thing, but the feeling for me is sharper, cleaner, calmer, and could accept another small block of colour better. With black (#4), as with white and gray, there’s a feeling of settling that is right, as life settles at night, as moving water settles to frozen ice. Contrast is always high. Winter is not a tone on tone look. Contrast can be high without sparks flying, as large blocks of purple and yellow could achieve, and more so if they’re very bright and clear purple and yellow.
I like a lot of red on Winters. Red is a big colour on Winter. When you get your red right, it becomes a neutral, like gray in your wardrobe. We wear a version of it in lipstick every day. I think Jennifer Butler said that everyone has their neutral red and I agree with her. We are conscious of the colour red in every other person, though not the same red. Dark Winter could wear Bobbi Brown’s Rum Raisin lipstick and cover it with her Sugar Lilac gloss (to clear and purple and lighten that lipstick a touch more) or White Brightening gloss and that would be very good. If you want lips that last till noon, put a good coating of Lauder Double Wear Ruby on, then another coat, then cover it MAC Fast Play which dulls and browns it that tiniest trace to accommodate the Autumn influence that lives here.
Complimentary colours together are very energizing and heated, so work better on the hotter Seasons. When the feeling is colder and stiller, the teal (blue) and brown (orange) in small areas bring in that mutually elevating effect without being revving the motor more than a dark and quiet group logically would. The lower block in #5 is black-brown. That’s your eyeliner, clean, red based, dark, Cover Girl Vivid Ruby. The teal could equally be a stone in an earring, a necklace, a clutch, a laptop case and can go much darker.
Two darks together are aferocity that Dark Winter does well. It’s become hard for me to discuss this character and separate myself, but they seem able to generate a strength of intention to be reckoned with. This isn’t a warm and fuzzy person at all. They’re business and move to the power position pretty fast. All black is kind of too mafia. Two dark but different colours works for me. The Dark Seasons do an overall dark look very well (#6). It’s their thing. For DW, I like when the colours are close if not the same, like a tuxedo, like a pinstripe suit, all those linear vertical elements. All black is, well, you know, never amazing.
I love grey a lot on all 8 Neutral Seasons. And T. Rex gray is right about perfect here. Pants, jackets, eyeshadow, socks, wristwatch bands, it’s all part of the final picture and it’s all getting noticed. Bobbi Brown’s Rock eyeshadow mixed with the darkest colour in Clinique’s Totally Neutral trio and you’re there. Make lighter versions for the lid and darker version to put above the crease.
From the second graphic:
As my friend and Sci\ART analyst, Mary Steele Lawler, from Mississippi, pointed out from her colour mixing courses: ” If one paints a warm bright color in a landscape background the painting will be distorted. This is a color fact, because in real life distance causes colors to cool down and become mellow while Bright and Warm make colors advance.” So, you get what she’s saying, that it would look like foreground-type colour plopped into the background for no good reason. The picture makes no sense. The viewer doesn’t get what they’re supposed to make of the whole thing or get past the question: “Why in the world did the artist do that? What can I be missing here?” That’s yellow highlights on a Soft Summer head whose natural pigmentation is of coolness and distance, so background colours.
Therefore, the coolness level has to be the same throughout the elements of a composition that are in the same plane for you not to look dizzy. Nobody understands the concept of colour consistency better than artists. Colour is just as disciplined as drawing. Until the vanishing point in drawing was understood, nothing looked anchored down. This is a set of rules artists don’t break if they want their work to look real. They don’t take liberties with the natural physics of colour behaviour either if they’re aiming for a believable work of art. Kalisz explained her PCA system by simply saying that it adhered to “how colour is”. She didn’t add or invent arbitrarily. She stuck to those rules that Nature put in place long before colour analysis came along.
#1 – somber, grave, looks good on these people, on this personality.
Since this is a Neutral Season (in 12 Season personal colour analysis, these are the 8 groups of natural colouring that are made up of blends of 2 True Seasons; their personal colour palettes contain just slightly warmish and just slightly coolish versions of every one of their most perfect colours), I set the saturation to pretty high. I stay on the halfway-to-cool side of a colour’s warm to cool spectrum. The dark cool olive and the cool yellow (#2) are the same at the same coolness and provide a high value (light/dark)contrast. Any added colour block is quiet. Picture a colour here, it’s too agitated.
In the next one (#3), I was aiming to show a print. Though the two greys are quiet, the print adds energy and so does a saturated cool coral pink, a variation of red, a colour to which humans are highly perceptive. The lower block is inert, or has no inertia, if you think of each element as having a momentum, a propulsive capacity to itself. Because each one of us is an energy field made up of light. Our appearance should have inertia, moving towards other people, our future, our goal. Isn’t that person just more fun and memorable than the static one (whose foreground colours are plopped in their background – does that look like you’re moving in reverse?) ? That lighter gray, I’d even take to cool light oatmeal or champagne, outside the swatches, but the Autumn blend makes those colours very convincing. If that’s what’s in the store but the pink is perfect, fine.
The purple and black (#4) is overall dark, where the purple energizes, warms, and dulls the black to the right extent (which is to say not a lot for DW). The clutch is meant to convey silver. Could be earrings, cuff, watch, necklace. Substantial diamonds are good because they add big presence without putting in another colour block.
#5 is there to remind that A. we can do a lot without black, that B. all teals are important colours on Autumns as turquoises are to the Spring blends, and that C. white is fine but not alone unless you’re very cool and near True Winter.
Dark Winter does say December to me.
To all of you and to those in your lives who remind you of how much there is in you to love,
I wish you the happiest holidays of all!
Rarely do the people whose natural colouring fits into this Season realize it. When Julie Andrews played Mary Poppins, she portrayed the average of this appearance and character to perfection. Her hair was dark but the overall effect was of light and clarity. Even her speech and manner were clipped and brisk. She was elegant and groomed and made riding the carousel in a sidewalk chalk picture normal and natural, elegance and magic at once. In Mary’s world, imagination and reality were the same and make-believe didn’t exist.
The word Season describes your natural colouring. In the colour world, there are 12. A personal colour analysis tells you which is yours. Why use the word Season, it sounds so dated? Because you are a child of a planet whose landscapes change as it circles (actually, ellipses)the sun on an axis, and we call those changing scenes seasons. The pigments of your skin fit into certain of those landscapes without beginning or end. There is no me, there is no you, there is no line that separates us from our world. I didn’t make that up or believe it from a yoga video. They’re called mirror neurons and they’re quite real. For honouring and celebrating the amazing coolness of being here, Season is a great word.
Your pigmentation causes the same frequency and wavelength of light waves to be reflected from your body (because that’s what colour is) as those reflected from your seasonal landscape. Nature’s wizardry doesn’t end there. The waves that move in that frequency and wavelength can be absorbed by the retina of another being and create electrical energy that becomes biomolecular energy. This generates an image in the brain tissue of that other. Were that other’s eyes closed and you could stimulate those eye neurons in that same way, you’d generate the same image in their brain.
Season is not about how skin looks, it’s about how it reacts. It needs to be given something to react to, like drapes or makeup or clothes. Otherwise, I don’t have a clue. You could argue that human pigmentation can’t possibly be narrowed down to 12 groups. Sure enough, you could have 20 or 30, but at some point, a very powerful way of improving your closet and your bank account would be too weak to work. There would be too many similarities among them to make each unique. The fact is, an eye isn’t able to tell that many similar colours apart.
The pigments that make up a Bright Spring person look a lot like the True Spring colours, meaning they’re clear and pure, warmed by yellow, and fairly light. When those colours get mixed with a bit of Winter’s, they become even more clear, but less warm and less light. With input from 2 True Seasons, Bright Spring is called a Neutral Season. They have warmer and cooler versions of each colour in their skin, hair, and eyes, and so in their colour palette.
Though the Spring presence is biggest, Winter always deals a strong hand. Often, these people resemble Winters, have been told they’re Winters, and dress like Winters. Once their hair turns white, they move over to Summer’s wardrobe and would look better if they’d stuck with Winter.
With the great distance between the parent Seasons of Winter and Spring, the landscapes are as variable as the individuals. The colours speak to me as lush and wild, so the landscape the same, like a jungle. The overwhelming collective life force of Spring and the violence of Winter co-exist. Winter places a cool veneer on the surface but the invisible reality is of life energy gathering force to sustain the frenzy of freedom and bloom that is coming in True Spring. Tension is building, for when this spring uncoils, True Spring will very truly have sprung.
These people have a thousand variations. My picture is pretty hot, or at least building up a lot of charge. AC pictures the melting snow running among the newest flowers. In the comment dated August 23 following The Brown-Eyed Spring article, which is also about Bright Spring, she said
One of the pictures that I have of Bright spring in my mind is of a landscape with frost and the first yellow and purple spring flowers peeping through the snow, the sound of water running under the clear ice, the crisp clear wind, the feeling that it may all freeze over again, but also the knowing that eventually it will be spring. Life will prevail.
She is in fine tune with her colours because she is on the cool side of her Season, so it’s apt that her inner landscape be cooler. Most interesting that the picture she resonates with coincides exactly with her position among the Seasons.You can follow a link to her very beautiful face in the comment mentioned above. Perhaps, her colour story looks like this.
This person sparkles. They have wit, conversation, joy, and humour. Winter gives them formality, organization, and some seriousness with the darkness in their appearance, but it’s not heavy-handed. Spring’s sunshine relaxes them, still with enough cool to give them quickness of movement.
Playful, cold, and clean, it’s all fun and games but there are many reasons for not wanting to get in this water. Winter=risk. A Winter element brings an edge, something that isn’t too comfortable. Winter will never make everything too easy for anybody. Like neon, we brace for this colour. In the beginning, you need to roll the dice and have a little faith that you look years younger. Don’t look at the drapes, look at the face when you’re choosing a Season.
These persons look more delicate than they are, like the finest icicles and waterfalls. This is not daintiness, frills, or fragility. Rather, think of the morning after a freezing rainstorm. The branches are coated with a thin layer of ice, looking like frozen feathers. The world looks more tough than soft, but we feel no threat. The sun is getting warmer, we can hear the music of melting ice, and we know the tough part is temporary, almost pretend. In scenery that seems so tight and yet is so easy to snap lies a contradiction that feels excitable and exciting, almost high-strung, to know everything could change in an instant with the right touch.
Light bounces everywhere. We know the thaw is imminent. Just a little more sun, a little more time, already we anticipate the gladness of Winter’s passage, and might even miss its majestic and solitary beauty just a little. While still quiet and cold, the colour information tells you this isn’t November.
This is a charming and very social person. Spring’s easy smile greets you, more friendly than you really expected. Spring’s love of dialogue appears, less reserved and more joking than you really expected. You’re carried along by an optimistic and open personality, but one who never fully lets themselves go. Winter still has a hand on the wheel and decorum will matter. It crosses your mind to wonder why this dark landscape is so sunny. How can it feel so right to have the sun out at night?
Since who we are not is 90% of the inventory of any store, 97% in Bright Spring’s case, let’s get a sense of what that looks like: earthy, heathery, dusty, misty, hazy, dilute, creamy, undefined, slouchy, rough, rugged, chunky, cozy, faded, subdued, faint.
The person is: spirited, vivacious, happy, charming. They’re the can of ice cold 7Up. Bright-eyed, bushy-tailed, ready for action, curious, and interested in everything. The body carriage is upright and perky, movements are quick and snappy, and none of this goes with the adjectives in the preceding paragraph.
What would it feel like to be standing by those crocuses above or in the jungle at sunrise with your eyes closed? The air is clean and brisk. It’s soft and sharp at once. You smell wet ground and new life. You’d prefer to keep one eye open, having no sense of being snug or sheltered, but it’s still ok. You’re pretty sure nothing’s coming to get you. Birth always brings so much hope and promise that this feels more like a party. Life is so vital right now that it feels a bit unsteady. When you open your eyes, you expect that it will look different than moments ago. How might you do that with apparel?
Bright Spring is :
- funny, quirky, unique, unexpected, bold, bright, artistic, varied >> a deep and pure blue-purple shirt with silver writing, whirls, or sparks.
- unconventional >> if you do floral, make the flowers blue or green or extreme purple and turquoise (black flowers are a harder take on life, leave them to Winter). If you do tweed, make it pink (tweed being Autumn’s texture, but everyone needs warm clothes; think of a one-of-a-kind Chanel suit).
- the problem with plaid is the same as with paisley, it is widely recognized as a workday fabric. It says practical (Autumn), not playful (Spring). The prominent squares say functional (A), not fun (S). Flannel is another less-than-perfect fit. By its texture, it dulls colour and says “grounded” >> Bright Spring might feel useful, sensible, and pragmatic, but others see decorative to ornamental. Crystal is not down-to-earth. The Zen moment is when everything you add to you keeps your compass pointing the same way. Compliments become holistic, about the whole you, because no element sticks out, pointing away from your True North. Pick shiny over muffled in fabric.
- Winter looks right when they’re overdressed for the occasion compared to everyone else. BSp carries some of that, though they wear informality better >> high end workout clothes are great. Jeans are often (not always) too rough. This person shines. They’d look good in a dress made of tin foil. It’s light, delicate, shiny, and hard till you touch it. Softening effects, like scalloped edges, are less good. Youthful looks work on Bright Spring with care, keeping enough formality to balance the Winter that looks bigger than it is. Polka dots to satisfy Winter’s classic style could be great in a formal and still symmetric design, or it becomes too young.
- Spring is young >> modern textile is better. It takes up more dye, not dulling fabric. The same colour is more muted in wool than Lululemmon knit.
- I want to direct you to a comment AC added, dated Sept 11, is this woman getting a handle on her colouring, I ask you??, after How Winters Intensify Eye Colour. She has realized that her colouring is assembled like a triadic colour scheme, meaning 3 colours equidistant on the colour wheel. Of course it is, the brilliant woman! Triadic colour schemes are brilliant on Springs. Anything based on a triangle is, but take care. Bright Spring isn’t that zingy. That scheme is very invigorating at any darkness level. This natural colouring is more settled. Use the 3 colours but keep one element smaller in proportion.
- The palette shines light outward, while Winter palettes always absorb more than they reflect. As light gets hotter and we approach True Spring, the sun will heat up even more. Below, you see Bright Winter on the left, Bright Spring on the right.
- anything too crayon/child’s drawing/cheery/playful is the extreme to avoid. Winter is very grownup, formal, majestic, regal, like kings and queens >> find the balance that still says elegance and excellent taste. You can wear a lot of colour well, but use those grays, small areas of B&W, and some darker colours that feel more serious.
- colours that are too soft, too pastel, too grayed – from a distance, those elements would all flow together, which is Summer’s watercolour look. Bright Spring’s facial features are very distinct from one another. Outfits look better when they are too, with adjustments for your own personal appearance >>bold elements and intense colour are better. Following The Brown-Eyed Spring article linked above, there is some great discussion for those interested in the use contrast, with links to Imogen Lamport’s excellent explanations (If you don’t know her blog, you should. I find her better than anyone at explaining fashion concepts and their practical, real world, real body, real budget application). I’m sorry, I’m not very helpful, my brain locks up, but grateful that Fil, Imogen, and others can help.
- most of you easily have the darkness to wear black. When it’s solid, it looks too heavy and dark >> when it’s lightened up, it looks more delicate and crystalline, and if ever a word described you, that would be it. This Pointelle Cashmere Cardigan is great. Every Spring should take advantage of transparency, in clothes, makeup, jewelry, hair laminates, wherever. Wear a bright shell underneath, not black or white or neutral, all of which are too serious and not invigorating enough. As much as crystalline is real and right on you, the other big word for me is glaze. So thin it could crack, transparent sugar.
Bright Spring’s Makeup
Winter’s red influence is far-reaching. Logic might tell you that this person will wear their warmer bright melon well in blush and lipstick because the Spring element is dominant in their colouring. To my eye, the pinks look better. They can be warmer and cooler but they feel more right than orange variations.
Every Season has their extremes, True Spring’s tambourine jingling hippie, Soft Autumn’s Earth Mother, Bright Spring’s harlequin, bells on the hat and all. The makeup takes some courage here, at least the lip colour. Start with sheer since transparency works. Hair can be very dark but the skin usually is light and bright and needs that in makeup. Lauder is one of my favorites for clear colour in lip products. Wild Rose, Lush Rose, Rich and Rosy, gloss in Fresh Berry and Wild Coral.
Mixing MAC Dollymix and Fleur Power is good. Shiseido RD 401 is a nice blush. Smashbox Radiance is too.
Eyeshadow is harder than anything to find, especially if you prefer matte textures or have mature skin and wear them better. Nothing here you’d call brown. The greys in the beads in the choker and in the diamond shaped earrings below are examples of good colours. The colour is mostly grey and neither earthy (which is usually an orange grey or brown, like a saddle, or a green grey or brown, like army), nor Winter’s hard, dark, cold knife grey.
Examples? Help me out here if you know of any. Become the artist and mix your pigments. Use Clarins Vanilla Beige or MAC Chamomile under the brow, and then again to lighten and yellow MAC Print a little, turn it into that cleanest yellowed taupe. MAC Mystery was suggested, a really good clean brown. Make your life easy, and mine so I don’t have to scour the makeup counters in search of something hard to find on a good day, and buy Mediatrix, Conversationalist, and Upbeat from eleablake. I’d have to buy Daisies and Diamonds too, to make colours I already own right and to bring out the yellow in these eyes. (and check out Dishy blush while you’re there).
Bright Spring Accessories
Do not have a brown or black purse. Connected to a person so sparkly, it looks like luggage. Ditto the generic brown or black shoe, suitcases on feet. Black is fine if it’s not chunky and usual.
Choose patent leather over suede.
Wear fun and colourful exercise type shoes (and clothes).
Wear coloured coats and shoes, ballet flats in fun patterns, sparkly accents, gold or silver threads woven into scarves.
One part of shopping is crazyeasy for Brights : jewelry. Wear lots of it. It looks good. You sparkle and so does it. Not matched? No problem. From Harry Winston to costume jewelry. Fancy, cheap, pretty, silly, all fine if it reminds you of the thinnest layer of crackling glass.
Look for delicate, not heavy and complicated, not 10 interwoven strands of pearls and chains. I looked for purity of colour, for colour a person would notice within 2 seconds of shaking your hand, for movement, jingle, like bells on a velvet rope, like crystals suspended in mid-air. When I think of Winter, I keep coming back to dry. Spring, I get sugary, so I looked for a little sweetness in the frost.
I like hearts. Above, they’re little twinkles. Bright Winter is big glitter, harder words for a colder Season. This is frost, not ice. Swarovski is all you really need.
Learning and becoming your Season is like hearing a language you grew up with. I had a Russian grandmother. Understood it fine till I was 10 and we moved from Montreal. Now, I get the odd word, but there’s still roots in that soil. At first, it will feel very foreign, very “I have no idea what this colour language is saying to me.” Look inward for truth and you’d admit it plucked a string. Something felt a ping. From there, you keep moving towards it. Because you already are it, you’ll move fast. You’ll find a place waiting for you that will enfold you, while another person would always stay the square peg. You can choose to stand still, but life is much more fun if you keep moving towards the heat.
How the other 9 Seasons intensify eye colour has been discussed in previous posts (Spring, Summer, Autumn). I neglected Winter because I figured these eyes don’t need a lot of help, they tend to be self-emphasizing. I thought I wouldn’t have much to say (will I ever learn?). But I was wrong, there are still ways to make what you have better, and really important ways not to make things worse.
Previously, we said you can emphasize eye colour, or any colour, by repeating it, by using the complementary colour, or by using contrast.
For All 3 Winters
1. Coloured eyeliner, of course. Sometimes repeating your eye colour works, sometimes it doesn’t. When it doesn’t, it’s because there’s conflict with your inherent pigmentation, skin and eyes being usually made of very similar pigments. Stick with the personal colour palette. Once you get a perfect colour for your skin, it will automatically be perfect for your eyes and hair. At what point obvious colour in eye makeup becomes too young is your decision, and might depend on your age, your taste, where you live, and what kind of day it is.
The exact colours to buy are in the swatch book. If you try to guess at the best brown/blue/purple/green, you have about a 20% chance of being right. Think of how many blue or green eyeliners are available. If you know your Season, you could look at the colours Sci\ART analyst and makeup artist Darin Wright has posted, and sells, at eleablake.com. Go Personal Makeup Colors > Liner > Eye Liners > then pick your Season. Some of us couldn’t scroll down to the lower ones, but one smart woman pointed out that using the up/down/left/right keys works for her, and it did for me too.
You have darkness, so very dark pure plums, violets, and sapphires can look like a softened black if obvious colour isn’t to your taste.
These eyes are very hard to dominate. Heavy liner looks fine, certainly on the Darks and Trues. Bright Winter is a more delicate face, always something of the sprite, and some may need a lighter hand with dark liner. IMO, black doesn’t suit anybody unless you’re very dark, darker than Halle Berry, because it’s too hard. Very blackened browns and greys look more real and less pharaoh.
2. Wearing your eye colour in clothing, which is more effective than eye makeup since the colour block is bigger. The high colour saturation in Winters strengthens the effect even more. Winter looks cluttered and fussy wearing many colours at once but the colour(s) they do wear are very bold. Since there’s less colour distracting the eye, the one colour it does see is maximally compelling. If it happens to match the eye colour, they carry each other that much higher.
3. Wearing makeup. No group looks more heightened with makeup than Winter and they know it, often not leaving the house without a fair bit of it – but, boy, it can take them places. If any group can carry a little too much, it’s this one.
4. Generic brown eyeshadow is too hot, flat, and safe for this group. They are far more grey people. It looks cleaner and sharper. Grey includes a thousand choices from ice to near-black. The Darks will wear iron and diesel smoke. The Trues and Brights wear stainless steel and coal.
It becomes essential to learn your right greys, the colour I think is the most challenging and often the last one people get very comfortable choosing after their PCA, but such a high-efficiency engine in clothing and eyeliner. I appreciate that the idea of saturated grey is oxymoronic. Closeness to greyness is how we decide a colour is of low saturation. What does Winter do, who needs high sat everything?
It comes together in an item that looks densely pigmented, like a heavy layer of paint, not gauzy or watery or dilute or sheer. Light wouldn’t shine through it – or so it should feel, even if the item is sheer. The grey consists of B&W only, which looks harder, not bluish or pinkish or any ishes, which look softer. Sound softer. Hear ish and the whole message softens, like speaking with your head straight (no ish) or tipped (ishy). Seeing another colour with the grey, like Summer’s mauve greys, feels like the compromise we associate with softening or muting, the presence of 2 colours at once. There’s no iffiness about Winter’s colour. It is or it’s not. Water can be lots of colours but nobody argues over the colour of blood. Solid B&W grey feels like no bargain, no deal, no give…why, just like Winter!
6. These eyes can be black brown to the point that no detail can be seen in the iris and the intensity of the colour doesn’t seem much affected by colour. What is strongly affected in every one of these eyes will be the crispness around the edge of the iris. In wrong colour, it blurs and fuzzes, which, of course, is happening to the whole face. The same colour suggestions apply regardless of eye colour if the skin Season is Winter.
7. Complementary colours exist opposite each other on the colour wheel. In each other’s presence, they set up a current, almost a pulsation.
Notice the blueness of the white of the eye above? In right colour, that blueness is accentuated. It acts as a complement for orange-brown in eyes. Self-emphasizing eyes, just by pulling on the right shirt!
This seems easy. The usual pairs are,
Blue if brown eyes.
Brown for blue eyes.
Purple for yellow.
Red for green.
Be careful. You need the right complement. Every single blue and every single orange don’t come together to make the vibration of adjacent complements. It’s not just low-lying fruit. The money shot depends on getting it right. Make your blues more purple, the complements get yellower. Make your inborn blues more saturated and redder, complements get more staurated and yellower.
Luckily, once you know your inborn colours, you Colour Book contains their inborn complements. It’s actually really hard to know your exact eye colour and which pigments matter to make the colour effect work. A blue eyed Winter isn’t going to have big use for yellow in makeup, but can sure wear primary yellow in clothes. She’ll repeat the blue in liner and then contrast the white of the eye by choosing a dark blue liner.
Play with your eye colour and this tool (enter Complimentary under Scheme and play with the Sat and Brightness sliders.)
If you have a brown eye, all the blues in your personal colour swatches will complement the orange tones, brown just being dark orange. Pick the ones that make sense to you as eye makeup, like the black sapphire liner.
Green eyes are obviously not going to pick red eyeliner, they’ll pick red clothes. Many Winter greys have a red undercurrrent because red is a huge part of the undertone. I have really never seen a subtle red presence in grey in clothes or eye makeup. I doubt these items are coloured that specifically. If you could find it, it would be interesting with eyes that contain green.
When I say contrast, I’m almost always meaning light-dark contrast, or value contrast, though there are other types. Wearing the lightest lights and the darkest darks at once is as important on Winter as getting their colour right. It applies to makeup as well as clothes and jewelry.
A very defined and precisely shaped brow is so important. It can be almost old-world movie star stylized. Elizabeth Taylor eyebrows. Casual is not so successful on Winter. Can you even imagine her in sweats? It’s almost impossible. Winter finds it hard to make jeans work and easy to dress up.
Define the brow with pencil or powder of the same colour, not darker, which can be picked out a mile away and looks cliche. Some Winters have a light brow. Go with that. To thine own self, right? It introduces gentleness that’s not expected and is extremely approachable and attractive.
Another way to define the brow is to surround it with light colour (highlight below, foundation above), like they surround the lips with light colour on makeup ads to make them jump out of the page. Always find ways to heighten the contrast on Winter. Winters will choose an extreme icy light under the brow.
You’re using very light and very dark eyeshadows. The eyeliner is quite dark, almost black. These 3 Seasons look good with dark eyeliner on the inner rims of the eyelids. Everyone else looks too vicious. Winter looks fierce, which they already look like anyhow (and are) so the stretch isn’t beyond credibility. It looks hard and they look hard, both in a good way. Great partnership (terrible grammar, sorry, Word is sending me all sorts of flags.) You haven’t altered course. The needle is still pointed the same way. You’re elevating what you are already, the name of the game.
9. Mascara is blackest black and lots of it.
In 12 Season personal colour analysis, Dark Winter is the group whose natural colouring is mostly composed of the Winter palette pigments, incorporating an Autumn portion that will darken, mute, and warm the colours as though 4 drops of darkest chocolate were mixed in. They might look like Demi Moore, Sandra Bullock, or Paula Begoun.
I apologize to women of colour who get tired of being outnumbered by women of light Caucasian skin in these discussions. My own experience is with light complexions so I’m more comfortable suggesting makeup for that skin. Among my clients, one woman of Indian ethnicity was Dark Winter. Asian women have been Bright Winters and Bright Spring. One African-American was Dark Winter. I used the very same makeup for them that I do for light women and they looked great. No doubt, more intense and darker colour would have worked as well.
Eyeliner is black brown or dark gunmetal. Dark Winter is not playful, they’re functional. When I wear coloured liner, my children say “Mom, you’re just not that happy.” I just found out I am an INTJ personality, same as Bill Gates, which is weird because he doesn’t look Dark. Ben Bernanke, now, that makes complete sense. I quite love the eleablake liners in Currant, Walnut, and Midnight Blue. If Dark is going to do colour, do it right. It gets cartoony quick.
Teal matters. As a repeat to teal in the eye colour or to complement the orange tones in brown eyes, whether in makeup or clothing or jewelry, this is an important colour for everyone with any Autumn in them. Some degree of gold-orange, in this Season it’s the darkest, coolest version as darkest chocolate brown, is present in the skin and overall colouring.
Eyeshadow is dull dark grey (with an icy highlight under the brow). Clinique Totally Neutral is good. I see Edward Bess Soft Smoke and Chanel Gris Exquis online and they look good. MAC Smut is a contender, with a good name. Dark Winter grey is like a dark, dull, dirty (not dusty, which lightens as it dulls) grey.
The Darks can do a brown in eyeshadow better than the other Winters because of that browning-by-Autumn element. It is purpley. I mix Dynamic and Groovy.
Could be Liv Tyler, Josh Groban, Elvis Presley, Anne Hathaway.
Eyeliners are black brown, coal, black if you insist, black sapphire, and dark purple.
True Winter is quiet. They are not working (Dark) or playing (Bright). Shape and outline matter more than colour. A perfectly lined eye using white and mid to darkest gray, that would look no different if seen on B&W TV, has unbelievable impact.
Red is the signature colour of the Winter group…and so eleablake gives True Winter the perfect cool, dark green liner in Eucalyptus.
Of all the Winters, True adds the fewest colour elements. They are perfectly defined and refined by B&W alone in very symmetric but strongly defined shapes. Colour in clothing can almost get in the way of the eye colour. One colour should stand alone, like one leaf left on a frozen tree, one red berry on a bush. Let that one colour be the eyes. And then the lips. I’ve never seen any other group do this B&W+eyes effect with such force. They’re just electrifying (explosive will be the territory of the Brights.)
Chanel Smoky Eyes is a good all-in-one quad. It’s sparkly, which looks good on the young. For the rest of us, it’s those cleanest greys in a matte version.
Bright Winter describes the natural colouring of the person who is primarily Winter, with the faintest yellow light shining on the colours, making them lighter, clearer, and a bit warmer than True Winter’s. Who? Zooey Deschanel, Audrey Hepburn, Liza Minelli, the cute pixieness of Spring but the glamour is bigger.
Fun not functional applies to all Spring blends. Winter is the bigger gun in Bright Winter and brings with it glitz and shine. When you mix the two, the flash can’t be held back. Cat eyes, shine, colour, it all works, but stay true to Winter’s need for control and just do one thing at a time in a reserved way. Winter holds too much back to fit 100% with thrills and bright lights.
Here, coloured eyeliner to the point of crayon actually makes sense. It can also backfire if you get it wrong and take away from the eye colour. Depending on your colouring, this is the lightest of the Winters. Your eyeliners are here.
Purple is to any Spring what teal is to any Autumn: important. An element of yellow is present in every colour in the palette/person. Know your purples. Yours are lighter than TW and DW, more variations on sugarplum and poster violet than majesty purple.
The Chanel Smoky Eyes quad is a great choice here too, or equivalent colours. I think L’Oreal makes a Smoky Eyes. MAC has a number of greys, though I wish they weren’t all so dark and similar. They need to make the same grey range that they’ve done so well with brown.
First: Reminder: The importance of blush to heighten eye colour can’t be overstated.
With such strong eyes, a lip with enough colour to at least be natural is important or the eyes look spooky. The TW face seems off-balance. You’ll see the current page number above her photos and the Page option below so you can move around.
The lips should be in contrast with the skin just like every other feature. On a young girl, fire engine lips can look like playing dress up. She’ll wear clear fuchsia pinks, sheer reds, and purple glosses. The whole strong eye-pale mouth look, I never love it on any Winter. Lip colour doesn’t have to be dark, especially if lips are thick or thin, but the lips should not look like they’re wearing concealer or be chalky. Choose a sheer plum. Wear a nude look, but your nudes won’t be in the same tube as Soft Autumn’s.
The bottom of page 2 is bizarre, like Snow Princess disguised as Cinderella-pre-prince. What could be has been diminished utterly. I couldn’t find this girl till the second last photo Page 8. I can’t even talk about the one above it. Hair colour matters. Even on a Winter, spending all your time on the eyes and forgetting the rest isn’t a look that works outside of magazines, like the second one down Page 10.
As a general impression to the viewer, these colours on Elizabeth Taylor don’t hold a candle to these. The eye colour is grayed, the liner is too hot so the whites of the eyes are yellowed, the face looks pudgy. Quite possibly the most beautiful lips ever given to a woman just make you want to turn the page. The next one is the goddess. Do you know what the waterline of the eye is? The inner rim of the lower lid. It’s a makeup effect to draw a white line on it because it looks so clean and healthy (off whites and beiges on other Seasons). In right colours, it will be very white on everyone, very important effect on Summers who can be quite pinkish to begin with. See how white it is in the good photo – that’s been edited in but it just elevates what’s already there. If it were placed in the worse photo, it would look weird or sinister, it could never fit in. And yet it belongs on this woman.
You can see some very lovely examples of Winter eyes and line patterns in the Our Eye Album: Winter article. Accompanying the Bright Winter eye 5 photo are some suggestions as to how a woman with those eye colours might approach intensifying them.