Still lunar and fluid like all Summer, still vaporous, but with a dimensional quality, like a silvery apparition, the hologram we discussed in Part 1. Soft Summer does not have a feeling of steps. What these fairly-light and fairly-dark colours do is flow smoothly.
“Can the Soft Summer archetype as you model it have a warmer embodiment?…mostly we’re compared to water spirits (which imagery I do love). I wonder if we could have a warmer side that’s maybe more of a mountain spirit? I do have warm-leaning eyes and some warmth in my hair, but yes, the SA drapes turn me yellow. Even so, gold, brass, copper, and rose gold are better on me than silver or pewter, which tend to just sit there on me.”
She makes an important point that applies to many Soft Summer. That warmer incarnation is certainly in my head, but maybe not always in my words and images. Something that comes up often for me is that I see many who are very borderline Soft Summer/Soft Autumn. They’re like the neutralest of the Neutrals, positioned almost even between those two Neutral Seasons. To see the eyes alone, you’ll pick the warmer Season for sure, except that the skin yellows with drapes. On these women, silver (not overly cold and shiny) and gold (not overly yellow and shiny) are about equal.
Soft Summer warms and solidifies significantly relative to True Summer imagery. In my book (over in the right column), we went from a lake to a forest. Hopefully, the Polyvores below portray that.
About shimmer, Paisley said,
As long as the iridescence doesn’t take the color too high, I think iridescent makeup is gorgeous on us. Also your makeup style depends on your Kibbe. Having been identified as a Romantic, I was relieved to read Kibbe’s recommendation that even daytime makeup should have some sparkle. I think very softly glowing making adds to the misty factor, as do finishing powders that are pearlescent. The point being to keep it soft-focus — it’s can’t go toward metallic in any way. But glowing and pearlescent is gorgeous on us, IMO.
And IMO, you’re exactly right, Paisley. I can not say it as well as a woman who lives it.
Seems to me that part of the shimmer, maybe all of it, is explained by the equiluminant property of this palette. Rendered in B&W, it would appear to be just a few shades of grey and much of the detail would disappear. Bring in colour and the combinations are pure melody. Everyone of the 12 Seasons soars depending on what you can do with it. For Soft Summer, it’s in the allure that happens when these colours are worn together on this type of colouring.
Why? Because vision in our brain operates on two parallel tracks. The colour system recognizes faces, objects, and details. The B&W system sees movement, depth, and position. In equiluminant compositions or outfits, the colorblind B&W track won’t quite be able to tell the location of the elements. But the colour track will see the elements well. This disconnect gives these compositions an unstable, shimmery, unearthly feeling. We talked about it in Part 1. Sorry for repeating, it is so amazing to me.
The SD body has presence. The horizontal shoulder line is substantial and the vertical line equally so. I am not a Kibbexpert, but narrow, petite, or slender wouldn’t be words I’d associate with Soft Dramatic. If someone picked those words for you over Amazonian, I’d have to wonder about another Image Identity. If you look at Images for Raquel Welch, she is luscious-yes, dumpling-no. Compared to other body types, these are a little burly. A lot of size, strength, and length in the upper and lower body.
Kibbe Soft Dramatic (SD)
- broad shoulders, a strong horizontal line
- a long bold sweeping vertical line
- drape, flow, light fabric ; soft plush – so far, great on Soft Summmer
- shiny fabric – for Soft Summer, this looks like the lustre of pearl and abalone shell ; go past it and your colouring will make the fabric shinier than it is and the fabric will make your face more muted
Many Summers ask if they look good in pearls. They absolutely do, taking into account your body’s geometry. Classics wear the classic strand(s) better than one big-huge piece. Dramatic bodies need big and geometric shapes to include the necessary angularity that balances who they already are.
We’ve talked about what looks like black and white on you in Black and White for 12 Seasons. Once you learn to manipulate what you wear to look like B&W or black&red or whatever on you without actually wearing those colours, you have cracked the code. You can achieve any look without ever venturing into unflattering colour by knowing how your own colouring exerts influence over what you wear. How do you do this? Wear your 12 Season Sci\ART palette. Job done.
Mr. K talks about bold and dramatic colour combinations. Great. Use your palette and go wild. Don’t compare your bold and dramatic to how Mr. Spock would get there.
Contrast levels are high here. First, it increases the drama and boldness. Second, I’ve rethought this whole contrast thing – 3! videos coming up about that in another post.
- Head to Toe.
- T with rounded edges, always the vertical and horizontal lines.
- Luxe and glamour.
- Colour repetition works well to give flow and continue a vertical line.
- Not stiff, tight, shapeless, sharp of drape.
- Lots of length. Strong geometrics with soft edges.
- If you don’t like the muted purples, don’t wear them as clothes. But they make darn good eyeshadow.
- Wear your hair colour on your feet.
Enlarged the jewelry to be big. With her size and the very generous amount of Yang, jewelry needs to be scaled way up or she’ll dial it down into a dime store trinket.
For the day of the week you go to the office, not the opera, there are shoes here that won’t punish your back and feet. The guys wouldn’t put up with that. Why should we?
Soft Summer Hair Colour
This came up on facebook but this is a good place to insert it. Whatever your Kibbe or Season,
When do highlights in the hair look right? When the distance between the lightest and darkest approximates that in the rest of the colouring (except if you’re a Winter (where contrast rules are unique and addressed in those 3! videos)). That’s how the hair can be a realistic extension of the head.
Summer’s light colours are pastels, more ‘colourful’ than Winter’s icy colours. Also, their darks don’t get extremely dark. So there is not a big distance between the lightest and darkest colours. Soft Summer begins from a darker base colour position than the other Summers. Applying the pastel concept, their highlight will be darker than the other Summers too. Message for colourist: don’t overbleach or add back toners that are too light.
Use a taupe highlight, like medium mushroon, for a tone on tone look. The colour is in your swatches. It is cooler than it is warm. But be careful. Someone sees warmth in the eye and the very neutrality of the skin and overestimates the warmth. Soft Summer is often getting coloured way too light and yellow so the face goes oily and yellow. This is not a butterscotch light, it’s taupe.
Also be careful again. That dusty quality in the hair is essential to bring the roses out of the skin. I mean, essential. Don’t stare at your hair colour and not see the whole like we do. Don’t compare your hair to anyone except other perfect Soft Summer hair, like Princess Kate. Would she look better with saturated hair? No way. Highlights? Absolutely not to me.
Start with a colour a couple of shades lighter than the base, usually a medium ash brown And be careful once again. Chemical colour is often very saturated and looks darker than expected, like saturated cosmetics do. So you might even go a few shades lighter than the base to compensate.
If you can keep 80% of the hair as totally unprocessed, much better to give the skin harmony and perfecting potential that chemistry so skillfully removes with chemical pigments. Make highlights filaments, not chunks.
How about this? Look at the before. Cooler than warm but not pure ash cool silvery brown. The highlights on the right side of your screen (not the model) are pretty good in the lower half of the hair. On the other side, the eye can get caught up on the too-light strands. Soft Summer’s total expression is Summer colours in shade. Still, those too light strands are at least cool beige, not platinum, not yellow or orange. The base is pretty darn good for a Soft Summer. I like it. (IDK if this model is a Soft Summer, it’s just about the hair).
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 $$).
You can use lipstick to help you narrow down your Season among the 12, and in some cases, you tap the nail on the head. You would have to use those colours that nobody else could wear as well. You need to stick close to TMIT for each.
As when test drapes are truly useful, they may or may not be colours that you’re supposed to love or go out and buy, though you could. They’re intended to create a colour reaction to help make a clear either/or choice. You need the extremes. If you’re a Light Season, pick a light lipstick colour. On everyone else, it will erase their lips and undefine the face, especially at maturity.
David Kibbe wrote Metamorphosis in the late 80s. It’s still brilliant. If you had a salon for women to discover their Image Identity, it would be near impossible to do by trying clothing styles, though it can be amazing how well that works taking photos of yourself in dressing rooms mirrors. In your salon, you’d need too many sizes and styles.
Can it be done with makeup? The makeup guidelines didn’t seem different enough in Kibbe’s book. Watercolours vs sculpted looked much the same because the face beneath was sculpted or it wasn’t. I can’t imagine finding your KibbeType with makeup.
Jewelry, now, that could be done. Maybe hats too. Choosing True Winter was a way to keep colour out of it to make the lines more audible. There are a couple of colours used if they shift the perception as pink >> soft, even icy pink. Oh, to be a True Winter. Black and White and you’re on the mountaintop.
Removing colour also adds the stillness quality so beautiful and true to Winter people. I tried to keep a frozen in time quality, since symmetric and smooth are not right on everyone. Even the rough pieces have something sleek or motionless.
On TW, a strand of pearls doesn’t match the presence of the person. Just by their natural colouring, this person is edgy looking, however soft their body’s lines. Simple pearls need something extra to make the same statement as the person, even a double strand is better.
This is True Winter. Even when its line are soft, it should look hard in density. I love about that SC necklace the way the pearl is ‘balanced’. That’s such a strong Winter association.
I’m using this article as a place to say something. Please skip if not into self-discovery conversations.
I read messages and questions from women learning their new Season and feeling more discouraged with themselves than ever. I am so happy to see that such a community of support and good advice has evolved on so many facebook pages. The free and generous cheering for one another is a most beautiful expression of an abundance mentality. Women have shared their experience and knowledge without pausing to realize that they are contributing great gifts of service to others. Putting goodness out into the world counts.
Like all forms of growth, you have to give yourself 6 months to learn to use your new colour palette. Your mind needs time to untangle how it has seen stores for the last 20 years. Practice patience. Think of this like exercise, which works for every single person who stays with it. You will find your best self because everyone else did. It always works. Women who have had a Sci\ART analysis would not go back to how they used to shop and neither will you. Give any doubts about that to the wind before you read another word.
You have to put in the time to get the reward. Like asking someone else to meditate for you, it just won’t work that way. You can’t miss the journey. The journey is the whole point, there’s no final destination. You have to engage it with conscious thought, not skim the surface or expect an automatic lock ‘n load. Don’t think about the endpoint or wish to be there till it’s fairly earned. Focus on moving closer and closer to defining your center. That right there is the entire point. You will get very, very good at your colours. Expect to return a few things – on those days, you’ll know even more about yourself. Move towards those moments.
I want you to be happy to be all of you, not just your natural colouring – which I guarantee you is beautiful enough to bring tears to the eyes of anyone who takes the time to really look.
Broken lines are the deal here. Connect the dots, dashes, seeds, beads. Add in swirls for soft and multi-directional lines for Flamboyant.
We all have these “I hate abcd about myself.” conversations, me just as much as anyone. Please don’t anyone email me and tell me I’m not sensitive to women’s body issues. I’ve got first hand knowledge of having your most basic survival foundations shaken by anorexia (high school but I can go back there in my head in an instant), of being beat around as a kid (school, not family). I get what humiliation at the hands of others and my own feels like. I fight it every day too.
Thing is, everybody does. Nobody’s life is all charmed. When I learned my Season, and when other women do, I noticed that it had a calming effect. The expression in the eyes at the end of the PCA is peaceful. I just figured that was recognition of that which lives in us and letting it have its voice.
Then I learned my Kibbe style. Again, that was calming. There seems a frantic rummaging that goes on, being unable to let it go till the puzzle is solved, followed by a strong, receiving quiet. Again, it doesn’t need to be perfect. It needs to be closer to the real you than where you were.
Note to self: Soft Anything = smoother and rounder. Also smooth does not = sleek.
We have seen or been the woman going into stores with her new colour palette and finding nothing, leaving her with an “I’m not this, I’m not that, I’m not anything.” type of discouragement. And then joins on the appendix “And besides, I hate my shape.” So, to find that allowing, satisfied calm about your shape, I think you have to learn it, just like it works with colours. Doesn’t matter if you find the perfect answer or the perfect jacket. It’s about starting to ask the questions and getting closer to who you are, sometimes through the Who You Are Not maze. This appears to be calming and empowering to everyone who experiences it.
“What good are these colours I have? I can’t find them in stores. If I see something close, I’m either not sure or the style is off. All I see is the black they said I can’t wear. I hate the weight that won’t budge, I’m so tired of having big arms I’m always hiding them.
What I feel is really far away from finding a way to communicate with me, like she’s actually trying to get away or hide so I can’t find her. Who I thought I was, her seat is empty, as if everybody left without telling me and I got left here alone trying to figure this out. I don’t even know where to start.”
doesn’t feel as good as
“It will take time to break away all the hype I now believe about colour and me – and decide what of that I want to keep that does speak to me and for me. I have new knowledge and new tools. I don’t have to worry. It’s all happening right now in my subconscious, even when I’m asleep. It took time to get how it was and it’s going to take time to go back. I’m going to calm down about it. I make a devotion to me to stay in the boat and give myself that time.
Spending more time in stores is just more depressing. What I need is to find the places where I feel good. Maybe that’s new makeup instead of clothes. Maybe it’s time with women who’ve lived it and are there just to listen. What the women on facebook notice about me never seems to be my thighs. Should I start thinking that I’m the only one who sees them? They see how I barely need foundation and the shape of my lips. If I learned a bit more about me, would I find more good stuff on my own? It sure would feel better to be paying attention to that.”
I’m taking the Dressing Your Truth course now. I love Carol Tuttle’s honest, been-there style. I love her basic premise: There is nothing wrong with you. Not one single thing. Any fault lies with the fashion/cosmetic/marketing industry that has trained you with false proof (meaning that if the mannequin’s clothes don’t suit you, you must have a problem) to believe that you’re not perfect. And, since you can’t solve a problem till you’re mature and accountable enough to own the problem, a little fault lies with all of us women for allowing this to happen. I know it’s insidious but we’ve also been too easy a target. We gobble it up when we should turn the page.
And so again, following the same pattern, I went from the statement “I’m a Type 4, 3 secondary” to recognizing that little jolt of empowered and hopeful. I read what those Types give and take in the world and found them in me. They gave me direction, like knowing where you’re supposed to be going, like something definite to move towards, cushioned by all the good things that balance me. Instead of feeling closed down if your palette doesn’t work, consider expanding yourself even more. The colours will fall in your lap when you’re thinking about something else.
We’ve seen the photos at the fashion collections where the models parade down together at the end – can’t recall a better rendition of Clone Planet. Of course, we don’t look at their faces. We’re supposed stare at the clothes. But we don’t live in The Matrix, and who’d want to? Once we allow ourselves to graduate to another level, to be released from the magazines that try to get us to erase our me-ness, we can say
“I am an energy Type 2. That’s why I can feel so hurt for myself and for others. It’s not weak to try to make others feel better, that makes me stronger. I’m a Light Summer. When people look at me, they see the hope and feel the lift of a rainbow. So I’m not tough. So I don’t wear black. I’d still rather be me, all of me, than anybody else.”
You might just feel so good and right in your own skin and everything you buy that you’ll have to work a wee bit harder at keeping your humility grounded and your joy contained.
Your truths are where your power is. What is true about you is what is strong about you. By the time you’re 35, you’re going to need a shovel to get at that. It won’t bubble up on its own for most of us. Those brave, intelligent, and very giving women of facebook didn’t start that way either. They started by talking the talk, hearing themselves in the stories and advice of others. They taught each other. They have come out on their other side, easily and steadily and continuously walking the walk. You will too. Just join the party. Look for the least contaminated truths you can find inside you when you talk. It’s really hard to do, but do it anyhow. Put yourself in a place of learning, only that, and make it good enough. If lovely clothes start finding their way into your life, fine, but make the primary purpose to learn who you are. Your most beautiful lipstick is waiting for you to do that.
The road to Heaven isn’t paved with high achievers, right? It’s a one-at-a-time brick road of finding your Self, and never living one moment beneath or beside that again. We have many selves. In our past, they get pulled out like the pages of a book and left behind. The restlessness you feel will settle when you gather them back where they belong. The Kingdom of Heaven is, has always been, and forever will be, inside. Anything that helps you find what is true and real and authentic about you will bring you closer.
In 12 Season personal colour analysis, there are 4 main Seasons, or True Seasons, named after the 4 natural seasons. True Autumn is the homeland for the most flattering colours of the person whose natural pigmentation is made of colours that are:
- absolutely warm; even the colours we think of as cool have been warmed by comparison to their appearance in the cooler Seasons; like True Summer, True Autumn is more saturated than people think. Most folks’ ideas of True Autumn and True Summer live in the Soft Autumn and Soft Summer palettes.
- muted, but not nearly as much as the Soft Autumn; yes, True Autumn’s salsa and curry are muted compared to True Spring’s fruit punch and citrus, but we don’t think of them as grey ; we do think of Soft Autumn’s cactus as greyed; True Aututmn’s entire palette viewed at once looks like a hot glow, well beyond rosy blush; to emanate that kind of heat, we are moving away from pink and into red
- medium to dark in value; most colours are medium, few are very light, and none darken all the way to black ; the overall look needs some darkness to give the feeling of richness and depth, too much lightness looking too powdery
This series of landscape articles (True Summer, Soft Autumn, True and Bright Winter , and Bright Spring have been posted) serves as an opportunity to see ourselves with objectivity. Unless we transfer colour and clothing decision outside of ourselves, objectivity is too far to far reach for most of us, certainly for me. We are far too invested in our complexities to have any idea how we look to others.
The world is full of odd psychology, a common one being to inadvertently reward ourselves, our kids, our pets, for the very behaviour we’d like to be rid of. We want to look like our friends or like celebrities, but what if we’re imitating them and not really loving how they look? Buy a magazine aimed at your demographic and mark the pages of the women you would love to look like. How many have complicated hair? sparkly eyeliner? sparkly purple eyeliner? frosty pale lips? Is their hair and makeup like yours?
It’s also interesting that in trying to look like our friends, we end up looking less like them and more like us. All those blonde highlights out there accentuate the differences between us rather than making us more similar, which only works in your favour if yellow in hair is flattering to your skin. If you put a room full of women in the same red dress and really looked at the women and not the dress, the differences between them, meaning who looks good in that red and who doesn’t, become easy to see. What looks good on our friends doesn’t help us know what enhances us.
Finding people of similar colouring to ours to try clothes, makeup, or hair on can be very useful if that person can be found but there’s such variation of appearance among members of the same Season that our counterparts are not always available. Or, the celebrities look like the average for the Season and we don’t. Still, some retain enough of themselves to have good real world comparison value.
Keri Russell could be a True Autumn.
So could Susan Sarandon. You can see that their overall colour effect feels toasty, medium on a darkness scale, and glowy. Their natural coppery heat just looks better surrounded by warm, muted, medium dark colour. Scan their Images and decide how dark their best hair is to flatter the face. It’s fairly dark. Many True Autumns wear their hair too light (Kathie Lee Gifford) and the glow be long gone. Red hair is by no means a necessity but these women are very seldom beautiful as blondes or in ash hair tones.
We belong to our planet home at such an organic, elemental level. We each hold wondrous beauty and the divine unknown within us. We each represent a painting of a scene that we know, love, and trust, but we can’t always see the resemblance with ourselves. Like music, colour is a language that tells us information about the world we live in. Like technology or medicine, the value of the language is so much broader when we can use it to live better, happier, freer, stronger, and more connected to the people that matter to us. Oh, and live cheaper, let’s not forget that.
What’s the world feel like for the very timely True Autumn Season? In Canada now, we are given these:
Melinda feels it this way, from this photo:
I love the traditional pictures of fall leaves and sun shining softly through a canopy of colors, but for some reason these pictures just stir up something else in me that I feel so connected to.The first set of pictures, the rocks and bronze river, reach into some deep emotions for me. Warmth, intensity, passion, strength, and solidarity all come to mind. Such a range of emotions that are rooted deep in my soul.
The pictures below speak to my surface, if that makes sense. The bright vibrant trees and the gentle softness of the sun echoes an almost tangible warmth, comfort, coziness, and welcome that you just want to walk into. The leaves add a crispness that just makes you feel like dancing. Joy lives there and you can feel it.
What they all have in common:
- warmth: well, yes, we know this, but replace the word with passionate heat for this article; if your mind says greyed before it says richly glowingly warm, hand the item over to Soft Autumn.
- darkness: it’s getting darker; daylight hours are shorter; in the overall effect of an outfit, there’s still enough light to read by.
- dryness: cooler air holds less water; the grass is browner, the harvest is dry enough to bring in ; not very shiny or reflective, no sparkles.
- dustiness: the Earth is busy and dry.
- productivity, we know there’s cold on the way and we need to get our house in order, but the sun can still warm our back and make colours and faces glow.
- a sense of depth, which you’ll recreate with layers, darkness levels, and patterns
- the overriding presence of brown in every colour we see; a petunia would stick out like orange pop at a coffee shop ; Autumn is Spring, oxidized, the wine and the nectar, not the fresh-squeezed juice.
- there are no cool blued colours; the reds are not direct red, but indirectly lit as rust, muted red-orange, and browned reds; even the light seems indirect, as though it’s coming from lower down in the sky, which of course, it is.
- texture: Melinda loves several photos that are stone based and I see True Autumn that way too; the glint of metal is not here yet, not till Dark Autumn arrives, which is still not very flashy, but it’s ramping up, and ramping up more in the Dark Winter, the least flashy of the Winters, and then more as it gets colder; True Autumn can work in small metallic elements well because they look metallic but too much is too hard on a person who really isn’t.
True Autumn Clothes
- never met one who likes clingy fabric, possibly related to age
- that blue cardi in the center may be too muted, may be Soft Autumn, not warm enough for True Autumn, but I like it and I could adapt it here because of the darkness; shopping ain’t perfect; you might love an item that’s close enough; there are swatches that can look pretty similar between unrelated palettes; at the mall, make the very best match you can and know that the rest of the outfit will situate the colour into your Season; makeup may be a bit less forgiving because it’s painted right on the face
- if Winter’s fabric extreme is the scuba suit, True Autumn’s is burlap, the ultimately brown colour, the utilitarian feel
- the camel is really oranged; I like the way a turtleneck frames the face and hair and even better if it’s a great colour that distinguishes it
- coloured and textured and opaque tights should be worn, they’re good
- not quite cute enough to be cozy to me, though many people do get that feeling from these colours. I find them too hot to be that benign, but the colour heat is still comfortable, not reckless. You can touch it without being burned. In fact you can hold it as long as you want.
- about white, remember how it didn’t really fit well into Soft Autumn’s landscape? , it will add yet another 5 years here
- about black, it’s too cold to harmonize with anything, and many colours don’t get that close to black, so I hope that skirt to the left of the amber beads is chocolate; the overall darkness effect should leave enough light to read by; having said that, concessions will make shopping more fun ; if you found a perfect faux leopard short jacket and it happened to have black buttons that were not enormous and the overall effect was of rich caramel, gold, and chocolate brown, and if your hair were medium dark or more, that coat might be absolutely lovely
- red is by nature a warm colour and I love a red coat, it gets noticed and manifests the very strong lifeforce of these persons; seemingly low key, they have some of the strongest moorings I know, levelheaded and reliable as the stone we saw earlier, absolutely nothing darting, fleeting, sporadic, or flighty ; I love neutrals (black ,white, grays, beiges and greiges in the U.K. ) a lot, but on both True Warm Seasons, I absolutely love lots of colour, personifying people that are so alive, busy and loving their life, not fussing, just getting on with it
- not the military style that suits Dark Autumn better, who is a much more straightened out, direct, vertical person, approaching Winter’s stationary vertical line (Bright Winter’s line will shift to the diagonal, Spring’s is becoming horizontal, explaining why horizontal stripes look so good to me on a Spring, and in my head, Summer’s line is horizontal wavy, like a ruffle) ; this character isn’t so “with intention” as the Dark blends, who lock onto a target; that rigidity is muted in True Autumn, as the colours are, so you have a straightforward person no doubt, but not shot out of a cannon
- what’s the theme song? It’s a steady beat, not as threatening as the Jaws movie theme, a Winter gets that, more defined contrasts and all, Dark Winter, I’m guessing. I’m looking for a steady drum, maybe Adele Rolling In The Deep? Close, but not hot enough…The Circle Of Life, maybe… heat makes molecules agitate and move faster. Thinking. Not Spring’s reggae. Hotter, darker, tribal, smoked light, uncontrolled heat (this is the part where the True Autumns say “Who me?”) Hotter than Soft Autumn’s Hot August Night. This is pretty hot,
Once Dark Autumn arrives, Winter will put the cold clamps on and there will be heat but it won’t be on such display.
- what do they drive? A Dodge Ram 1500? Too truck. Classier? Cadillac Escalade? Too flaunty. A Navigator? Better. A Jeep Wrangler Rubicon? Feels about right. Dark Autumn drives a Jag XJ. Dark Winter drives an Audi A6 Avant after they trade in their 2010 Nissan Maxima, having found an Audi that comes in Batmobile black. True Winter? Black Porsche. Bright Winter? Lamborghini with the doors that flip up. Bright Spring? A Merc E Class convertible in a smart and snappy colour. Back to our topic.
- I like the bow in the jacket at the mid-top, it’s not too ribbony, it’s solid and square in a very browned neutral; strength and femininity together are curiously magnetic, I feel
- no real pinks present; mix pink with pumpkin puree and that’s True Autumn pink, looking much better in clothes than makeup where browned colours are better unless the pink is very golden
- no pinkish reds; if you take tan leather and dye it red, that’s the cool red, maybe like a red Frye boot ; that’s the red lipstick too, like paprika, not as dark as chili powder ; I like a browner day lipstick – if Soft Autumn’s was the rosy cinnamon stick floating in the warming pot of apple cider, then True Autumn is the cider itself, and Dark Autumn is the clove
- Spring thought about peach, blossom, and candy; Autumn thinks of the jars of preserves, not the raw salad (Spring); Autumn thinks about strong, heavy, straighter now that Summer has gone, mead and liqueur, Bailey’s, Kahlua, a duller finish but lots of touch information (fur, flannel, corduroy, tweed, leather), nectar (colour is getting thicker, more opacity), the hive, the honeycomb (repetition, industry, work = functional (Spring=fun, Winter=flash, Summer=feminine); the bumblebees of the world, going about their business, these are the builders; think of blocks, bricks, order, structure, steps, strength, progress
- colours start at medium, not light; only the beiges get very light and they’re still browned, like vanilla whipped into cream, like brown buff, light wheat, light brown peach; cottage cheese is too light and mozzarella too yellow
- I find it harder to know if I have lots of golden heat when I assess a possible True Autumn colour vs. Spring, where I can always tell max yellow heat. What I look for is a bronzed brown glowing feeling, like hot copper overlay, which how the person’s skin tone looks. I want to sense abundant sultry heat, not greyness, not lukewarm, not summery, though still very hospitable, nothing hostile.
- very little blue, just one bronzed colour; the blues are quite greened because the yellow contribution harmonizes better in warm coloured outfits while cool blues don’t; I love purple with the warm hair tones, it’s unexpected and not very red because Winter isn’t here yet
- there are warmer and cooler greens; the cooler greens really are green, not teal or avocado, and a little dull, like Green Bay Packers green
- as more distance between colours on the wheel are fabulous when combined, we get a very rich cornucopia effect; profusion was Spring’s word, abundance is Autumn’s
- animal prints in small surface area supports the lifeforce without looking swallowed; Dark Autumn can balance a whole item better and same with metallics as Winter’s hardware orientation arrives; this woman isn’t that decorative and feels overdone in glitz, she’s got 1000 cookies to bake for the Cookie Exchange, is hauling the boat out of the water by herself, wants to fit a bike ride in this day, has a pie crust to roll out, and would love to hear about how you’re doing once she’s finished what she set out to do; she sure looks gorgeous with a metallic thread in a scarf, a copper glint to her lipstick, a gold or brass buckle on a belt or purse, or stripe in a shirt
- using matte and dull finishes makes the odds of getting the colour right higher automatically by creating some muting, as some of the shoes below; the green heeled sandal at the top of the Polyvore below may be too emerald but in sueded fabric, it could look like dull teal and fit into this painting
Here are the shoes, the belt, the bag, the HAIR!! (See also True Autumn’s Best Hair Colour). Warm, rich, lustrous, and brown. There is nothing faded about this palette.
She wears a purposeful watch, maybe a menswear style,
to go with solid functional bag, square like a briefcase or at least not completely slouchy,
shoes you can live a real life in,
and a necklace with weight.
Supremely business stylish, this lady is up-to-the-minute, resourceful, and lives in the present. Autumn is grown-up, self-sufficient, and mature. Her male counterpart is Indiana Jones, though they dress him as a Soft. U2′s Bono sans glasses seems True Autumnish.
Think about the quiet light and stony strength of the pyramids, not the blinding jackpot glare of El Dorado. Marketers have a much better handle on what young women want and how to sell it to them. If True Autumn has trouble finding clothes, it’s because the styles in shops are too young and her colours are often limited to brown and green. Imagination belongs everywhere.
The pieces have some weight and bulk, not Spring’s hearts and lucky charms, not Summer’s lacy water, or Winter’s hardest-substance-on-Earth jewels. To add interest, touches could be Egyptian, Bollywood, hot stone-lava, old coins, wood, jade, brass, enamel and ceramic which remind of firing and heat, and natural semi-precious stone. Even stones should be noticeably browned down. Leather looks great, strong without being hard, in Southern Comfort colours.
She can accessorize endlessly, with items from many categories at once. Scarves were made for this woman because they look textured and warm and give the impression of depth. What she does best isn’t really to accessorize, like Bright Winter who can wear jewelry on her neck, ears, and wrists, all at once. True Autumn layers.
It’s easy enough not to stumble into Dark Autumn, just keep black out. Colour can go pretty dark but you should be able to see that it’s not black in all but the dimmest lighting, and this applies equally to shoes and eyeliner.
Reptile can work if it’s quiet, not too cold and slithery. True Autumn is more plain-spoken. Dark and oily don’t belong in this brew, they look like a black panther marching up the forest path in the photo above. Panthers don’t march, they prowl. She might do crocodile, though Dark Autumn better. Snakeskin is best on Winter, but if the colour is very gentle, even a Soft Autumn can look great. The texture offering is good, it just needs adapting because of the message the wrong version can send.
Periwinkle is supposed to be an Autumn classic but it doesn’t send thrills through me. I do love the Soft Autumn in their version.
Going back through this to pick out random keywords that could define this colouring: abundant, deep as in plush, deep as in layers, medium-dark, texture, strong but not maximally hard, work, build, structure, browned, coppery, golden, matte, small to medium metallic or fur or animal element, functional, opaque, molten, rich hot glow.
Spring may be excited, but more than any other, oooee, baby, True Autumn is exciting.
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.
Every Season makes darkness adjustments for hair colour one woman at a time. There will always be individuals who don’t look right in the median colour, and fare better along the outer edges of the curve. I love hair colour that looks believable, like it happened by itself, and that flatters the skin to the utmost. This is when the viewer feels most relaxed.
Depending on depth of complexion, personal taste, and occasion, cosmetic darkness is adjusted too, though always staying inside the personal colour palette of the Season, and aiming for the same goals as with the hair.
In 12 Tone personal colour analysis, Soft Autumn is the name given to the type of natural colouring that contains colours mostly characteristic of the Autumn group, but cooled and grayed by a smaller measure of Summer.
In previous posts on Soft Autumn hair colour, I showed a coppery apricot colour as being quite lovely. In every Season, many hair colours are not only possible, but better and righter. Sometimes the freckle colour is the perfect highlight, even in the Dark Autumn or further out in the Autumn family, at Dark Winter.
Soft Autumn is a typical Neutral Season in that they have a range of warmer and cooler colours, but none fully warm or cool. The value (meaning, Light>>Dark) range that perfects the skin has some movement too, though never extends to extremes of either one for the Soft Seasons. What this woman strives for most importantly is very muted, soft colour. Muted and warm, that is, because maximally muted (greyed) and cooled belongs to Soft Summer, peanut shell and misty mauve respectively.
The element of coolness means that they are not especially orange-tolerating. Hair and freckling can skew the perception. The woman above (all 3 photos) has many apricot brown freckles. She adds those colours to her hair, giving a warmer appearance, as you see in the lower photo where natural medium warm brown and apricot highlight are visible. She can wear soft golden-oranges beautifully in makeup as long as they’re not very dark. Regardless of hair colour, darkness in makeup is a caution point for Soft Autumn, often appearing darker than expected from the pencil or tube colour.
Some Soft Autumns are harder to imagine in apricot, like Kate Moss, who does not seem orangey at all. (I only know she gives a Soft Autumn impression). Though the blonde that Charlize Theron wears well never flatters her, and warm blonde does, she is neither very orange or dark. Some of these seem almost too orange. She can do more darkness and warmth than we usually see and look far more interesting with less paint. This feels just beyond the upper darkness limit where colour is being pulled from the skin.
Kate Moss has smaller, sharper features and wears darker hair better than what we normally see, but does not do very dark so well. This is a good gallery. 6 and 8 seem very good, while the rest make your insides tense up. Or, go back even farther.
The less well blonde works, the more Autumn presence there may be. Kathie Lee is a good example of a woman who was beautiful with deeper, warmer hair colour.
Google Kelly Macdonald. Though you’d think she’d be better in the lighter warm brown hair, I prefer the darker. Many have a naturally quite dark hair colour. They might be expected to be darker Autumn, but they’re drained out by those drapes. On Kelly, orange hair is overheated, not as good as a more neutral brown.
On Kelly, we again see those sharper features that are more often seen (by me) in Soft Summer, where the facial architecture resembles Candice Bergen’s who is probably a Summer of some sort. Soft Autumn usually carries more squared, slightly blunted features like Claire Danes, but there is interchangeability in this. Is that to go with Autumn’s blunter personality? I never said that. I would go as far as direct.
I wonder if so many models are Soft Autumns because their very medium-ness of colouring makes them versatile and that particular bone structure is so pretty when it shows up in this Season. Molly Sims, Drew Barrymore, Gisele – it’s in the fine nose, high round cheekbones, defined jaw, and feminine mouth. The example of Rene Russo came up on Facebook recently, and I can’t think of a better illustration of this combination of facial geometry and colouring.
There was a request for a formal look for Soft Autumn. I visited my latest happy place and made this. Our Polyvore craze has been a great thing. In practicing to be my own Season (Dark Winter), I didn’t realize how capably I had learned to exclude everything else. Now, the DW imprint is strong in my head. It is high time to reopen the windows to register the many choices on the shopping landscape.
Maybe you will think, those colours are all too similar. When I do this, I’m essentially following the guidelines of your natural colouring, how it feels to look at you. I dress you as you already are, to be consistent with the light you already emanate. On Soft Seasons, there are no big jumps from one colour to the next. Transitions exist, but as the eye moves from the skin to hair to eyes, it doesn’t encounter anything bold or sudden in the colours themselves or how they are combined.
The purse is the warm hair highlight. The lighter woman might choose from the right side, the darker from the left. The darker shoes could be worn by any of the three Autumn Seasons. The metals are not very hot. I love wood, shell, and muted bead on Soft Autumns, in keeping with the female-earthy feel. Natural fibers and textures are fabulously good on them, which drew me to the linen-and-flax feeling of the jacket, but it might be too casual for this ensemble.
Pearls? I love femininity on Soft Autumn. In this regard, Summer leaves a strong trace. The curve-hugging rippling fabric of the dress…. But everything is very medium. There are no extremes, the swatches all hug the center in Warm>>Cool (but tipping over to warm) and Light>>Dark. Only saturation is low and soft.
Colouring hair may enable wearing warmer or cooler choices from the Neutral Season swatches, but you’d still stay within that Season’s own colour menu or the skin’s perfection will pay a price. I do not believe that anyone can convincingly and flatteringly colour her hair to take her outside her Season. I know for a fact that many will disagree. OK.
Recreate the light you already cast. Make the wavelengths you add be synchronous with the ones you are. To the viewer, it feels effortless as floating.
Lockets come in so many styles for one type of jewelry. They are at once classic, Victorian, and vintage. Styles vary from very time-honored simplicity to jewel-encrusted modern. They emanate a sense of ancestry that feels grounding, well-bred, and perfectly belonging to this time of year of tradition and family.
At Heartsmith, I found a wealth of styles and a poverty in my ability to choose just one style for each Season, which I failed to do in many cases, as you’ll see. The name of each design and the photo are linked back to the product page.
A sincere thanks to Heartsmith for allowing me to reproduce the photographs.
Let’s look at some very beautiful jewelry.
Heart shapes are in keeping with Spring. They are young, romantic, pointed, and delicate. The adjectives romantic and delicate are often given to Summer, but they are appropriate here too. Spring’s romance is more magical than Summer’s Bosoms&Roses style (as a young friend of mine once described her True Summer Mom’s reading taste). Spring is delicate as youth and fairy wings.
Because True Spring is the sun.
Spring is airy, floaty, skyward-directed like growing new plants reaching for the sun’s light. Many members of all 3 Spring groups have small features and a petite aspect to their features. A small, floating heart is so pretty, for any Spring or its blends.
Juliet Gold Heart Locket has a brushed center to integrate the Summer element, but the flower petals could be the wings of butterflies. For the Light Spring who resembles a Summer, this style is also available in a white gold.
For me, this Season is crisp but delicate, like frozen lace. They are the frost on the window, the ice that coats evergreens and bare branches after an ice storm, the pattern in the thin ice over a puddle when you step on it. In the Season that blends Spring’s sparkle and Winter’s polish, metal must shine.
Audrey is stunning too, larger and less yellow in the metal.
If the Wishing Star pendant comes back into stock, put your name on a list.
True Winter is minimal in its ornamention. Pieces are important but they don’t move. I see True Summer as more detailed and decorated. The circle is Summer’s essential shape. The metal is brushed.
Elizabeth Sterling Silver Victorian Locket expresses the gentle strength of this group. Summer is highly capable without needing to control everything around it (like another Season we know).
I loved this one too. I like it when I have to think about it a bit. This design felt a bit unexpected, and others may have a different interpretation of the look of a True Summer. Pushing the limits of your own taste is an expression of your creativity, of thought becoming matter.
True Summer is often a reflective, pensive personality.I loved the darkness, because True Summer is so often stuck in lightness, and they are not that light. The weight felt good, because True Summer is not light by weight any more than it is by colour. The swirling ivy lines are perfect. The peaceful message of the dove is highly Summerish, as is the grace and flow of wings in flight.
Alternating polish and matte silver integrates the Summer muted and Spring shiny elements. The size is small and there’s a minimum of fuss to allow the essential heart shape to take center stage.
In this Season that is essentially Summer, with a dusting of Autumn, the refined sophistication of Summer becomes more solid, thanks to Autumn’s strength. I love the weight of the chain, the pearl, and the stronger closure. The small blue stone in the heart is perfect. I find this piece gorgeous.
The Brandy Bracelet is fantastic. It is muted in colour and shine, antiqued, of mid-darkness, with good weight.
Autumn’s lights and darks give a sense of depth. We see this in plaid, for instance, where there are advancing and receding elements. Autumn’s strength is expressed here, as we look for more sustenance in this Season (as we do in the foods we eat as the cold approaches). This is muted in colour and metal, not too hot or cold, feminine but substantial.
We’ve been talking about which Season is which element in our Facebook group. The symbolism of the Seasons, and how these are depicted in their human examples, fascinate me. Sometimes, an association gets stuck in my head and I can’t dislodge it. For me, Soft Autumn is the tree. Are they the wood element? Yes, probably, I could make that extension.
This piece is perfect for a Neutral Season, with the gold and silver. Both are muted, as looks best on Soft Seasons. If you wear metal (or makeup, or clothes) that are shinier than you, you just got duller by comparison. The gold is earthy, not light and shiny. Love this piece.
Beautiful, in silver with gold accents. You can see how absolutely lovely this item is in the video on the product page. (With citrine, topaz, or diamond options).
True Winter is controlled and controlling. They are not all over the place. Floppiness is hopeless. They do not move their bodies in a floppy way. Like the royal family, they are contained and ceremonial when they look their best. Pieces are symmetrical and balanced, an exact equilibrium.
Yes, the metal is yellow, but Bright Winter is a Neutral Season. They have yellow in the skin, and it is this light, shiny gold. It is well balanced by the darker lower half. The jaw-dropping opulence, especially in a piece of this size, is balanced better by the Bright Winter than any other.
Safety is nowhere on Bright Winter. It disappears completely. If you are brighter than your jewelry (or makeup, or clothes), they are duller by comparison. This is the ultimate go-big-or-stay-home Season. Glamorous hairstyles, dramatic necklines, they just look better.
The contrast of blood and snow is always Winter. The medieval weighted hardware of Autumn. The imperial luxury of Winter. The deep red undertone of Dark winter skin. The darkness in the metal. The overall feeling of cold and hard. Not too shiny, as Autumn mutes textures as well as colours. An amazing piece of jewelry.
Anna (name changed) has just been told that she’s a Soft Summer. She expected Soft Autumn. She is 30 years old.
Anna heads home, reads the document that explains the color analyzed clothes/cosmetic/hair/jewelry that harmonize most beautifully with her natural coloring, looks at her clothes, and sees that nothing is as flattering as it could be. Just like everyone else after a PCA. She looks at the pictures of what her hair color should be and starts buying the new makeup.
None of it feels right. She can’t see the greyed brown undertone in her palette. Her mother always said she was a redhead. Her husband calls her his Coppertone girl and I suggested that Soft Summer isn’t flattered by traditional bronzers. Suddenly it’s all wrong. In her own words, she feels “like a bird that’s fallen out of its nest”. She knows she’s making it be hard when it’s supposed to make her life easier, but how to relax into it?
Confirm the result
I can be wrong. Anyone can be wrong anytime, doing anything. I usually, but not always, go with my first impression. A new set of eyes, a new day, and I might see something else.
We went ahead and did the drapes again.
For a second draping, I always have someone sit in who is not a colour expert but is sensitive to the optical effects. Everyone can tell when you look better, but not everyone is visually perceptive enough to watch a face blur and focus, or the eyes and teeth yellow and whiten. I try not to talk much because I usually see what I saw the first time. Soft Summer was confirmed.
The tangle is mostly between the 2 best Seasons. Nobody can see their own face that objectively, including me, which is why a makeup purchase decision is so often wrong if you test it on your face. Anna’s confusion was valid, in that she felt the shadows around the eyes were less visible in the Soft Autumn drapes. You have to be careful here. If the face turns yellow, then (my theory is that) the yellow is canceling some of the purple in the shadows, just as we choose yellow concealer.
Look at the whole face. It should not be yellow at all. Even a trace of yellow gives the effect of mild jaundice, the features seem a bit erased. Neither should there be a greyness in the face, where the drape is pulling color out of the skin, but be careful here too. In its milder form, that chalkiness can give the “clearing the skin” impression. The crispest, freshest, healthiest skin was in Soft Summer. That perfect, delicate, aristocratic bone structure definition that Soft Summer does ultimately well was clear.
It was as though I told her she’d been switched at birth. Her identity, her safety net of what it meant to be Anna, was pulled out from under her.
Expect to need time
Start with knowing what to never look at in stores again. That alone will exclude so many distractions that the right items will become more obvious. Look at the item and think about why you should NOT buy it. “The grey is too blue”, “I see yellow in it”, “the white is stark”. Try to talk yourself OUT of it.
Match your Colours Book the best you can. Don’t be distraught if the precise fog brown isn’t obvious. Don’t try to classify every garment you see to its Season. You’re already looking a zillion percent better than you used to. Your eye is learning. The Book does the mixing and matching for you. Remember your principles for how to combine the colours (these are sent to clients after a PCA).
Accept that you will keep making better and better decisions. The effect will get stronger. I get that doing your job is hard enough. This is like asking you to do your job AND learn a new computer system. Don’t worry. You now understand where you came from and you know where you’re going. This is empowerment beyond describing. The branches can’t help but grow when the roots are this strong.
You’ll make a few mistakes. In your first windsurfing class, the guy in the water most is the one trying the hardest, progressing the fastest, working on moving to the edge of the technique. Mistakes are good. Allow them to be good. This is how we learn.
Leave the hair to last
Hair is the hardest to get right, hardest to adjust to quickly, and often the most sensitive (and least objective) self-acceptance feature. Get used to the clothes and makeup first and your brain will be much more compliant when you correct the hair color. Do it in small steps and your mind will say “OK, fine, she’s done this before and I survived”. If you did a big hair adjustment on day 1, your mind would say “Wrong, off, can’t be right, looks weird, change it back, need to go find someone and pester them till they confirm that I looked better before, get me to a phone, I’ll see a different colorist, can’t be, can’t be, can’t be.”
As a child, the hair was a warm toffee blonde. Nevermind. Anna has different skin now and that hair might not work at all. Besides, children’s hair takes more money to replicate than I’m willing to spend on my hair and searching out that rare colorist who could create it.
She is now more the pine cone in the highlight (should she choose to have them), than the wheat field. Her natural base, just visible at the temple below, is not very dark, a medium ash brown. Her eyebrow is light-medium ash brown. Letting the red fade till she can go back to her natural base color, with those watery grey-green eyes, would be like looking into a misty forest.
(See Soft Summer’s Best Hair Color for more on this Season’s most skin-flattering hair color).
Breaking emotional ties
You can’t get rid of your color luggage that fast. Letting go of the past is shaky for all of us. “I always saw myself as…” needs to be uprooted but it’s dug in deep. Doing something different is always destabilizing, even if it’s driving a new way to work. You can’t hold your balance and your position. It’s uncomfortable.
Release who your parents expected. Never look back over your shoulder again. You’re not her anymore. You can choose what she has that you want to keep. Allow the calm, strong feeling of finding, and speaking, in your own true voice.
Learning to repel the marketing all around us is part of the journey. A much more difficult question, that may take a lifetime to answer, is whether we intentionally, but subconsciously, sabotage ourselves. As women, we seem awfully good at undermining our full potential in beauty, as well as in personal strength, more than we could just blame on our marketing culture. Everyone who saw Anna commented on the beauty in her face, and in her person. We women are better at cataloguing our faults. Inadequacies that nobody else sees becomes our security blanket.
If it were given to you at this moment to become everything you could be, how many would take it? Marianne Williamson’s words are repeated so often to let us marvel at the truth of them. It is our not our darkness that we are afraid of. It is our light. (If you don’t know the full passage, read it here).
It is THAT fear that must be entered. PCA is not for everyone. It takes a courage that you didn’t expect would be asked of you. Your view of the world will be challenged. The responsibility to make it as you want it to be will feel forced on you, unless you choose to see it as Opportunity.
Anna will be treated differently as she separates from her past and realizes that she may have to step up to how beautiful the world sees her to be. It will take about a year.
This is what I saw. Go back and look at her eye.
…the whole experience has given me peace. Not initially, obviously, but upon reflection, I feel at peace. It was like meeting myself for the first time. Or finding out something major about myself, that caused me to have to reintroduce myself to myself. (if that makes any sense). And now that the ”fog” has settled, the “muted and dulled fog” : ), I am relaxed at meeting the new me. And I enjoy to know myself that much better. This was another, fairly large piece of the puzzle I found in me. There are less questions. Less self doubt. And I feel like I can forge ahead now, equipped with a better sense of self. I have been enjoying the last few weeks, walking into stores and looking for the “real me” in there somewhere. And when it is not there, I don’t compromise anymore. It’ll be fun. It’ll continue to give me direction, as now I know the destination. There are lots of ways to get there, but I will always arrive at the same place. Within my palette. Whereas before, I had no direction, no sense of self, little confidence, and depended on second opinions a lot. I am getting there. It will take time. But I feel much better already.
The whole premise of color analysis is that by wearing the colors already in you, same value, warmth, and saturation, you get the youngest, healthiest, most perfected skin. You also look least artificially made-up in color analyzed cosmetic colours.
When Spring eyes are light in color, they are usually quite light. If they get surrounded by dark eyeliner, hoping to bring attention to them by creating a deliberate light/dark contrast, the problem is that the dark color doesn’t appear anywhere in this person’s natural coloring, so it looks false. And because this person can’t balance such darkness, the effect is to do what a dark line around a light shape always does, to close it in and make it appear smaller.
Don’t make yourself insane looking for red-browns and green-browns and purple-grays and yellow-grays to complement the eye color itself. What you perceive the eye color to be may not be correct, and the effect backfires. What colors enhance the skin enhances the eyes, it’s the automatic guarantee of PCA. They are in your personal colour palette or swatches.
Sorry for all the links, but these images are copyrighted. May take some patience. They should open in a new window.
For all 3 Springs,
1. Makeup cannot be earthy or pastel. A lot of makeup can’t decide if it’s clear or not clear. If you don’t know for sure, don’t buy it. The disaster of earthy makeup on a Spring can be seen here (please excuse the title of the article, but you see the painful effect of orange-brown eyeshadow?) Now add the frost to a color that doesn’t make sense this frosty, and it takes it to overkill. One of those “On whom does this look good??” colors.
Same concept on the model below. For me, the eyeshadow and blush are too orange-brown. It looks unnatural and heavy. We see lines under the eyes, like she’s getting tired from competing with these colors.
Uploaded with ImageShack.us
When makeup is too cool, the effect is anemic, here again on Ms. Theron. There’s something ghostly about the skin, rather than healthy and glowing with vitality.
And when it’s good, here, same model. Only the Light Season can do this spun gossamer, sugar fairy look so beautifully. Spring adds yellow light, Summer does not. (The eyeliner is still sucking color out of the eye.)
2. Eyebrows matter. PCA brings attention to your eyes like never before. They’re the focal point of your entire being. The brows are the frame for the eye. Keep them neat and shaped. Especially important for Light Seasons who don’t wear dark makeup well.
3. The waterline of the eye is the inner rim of the lower lid. In your best colors, it will be the same color as the rest of the skin, which is calm and pale yellow-beige. That looks healthy, cleans up the white of the eye, and sharpens the iris. You could put a line of cream eyeliner there.
4. Don’t underestimate the power of jewelry. It is near the face. Violet eyeliner doesn’t look entirely grownup in makeup, but violet in jewelry can be remarkable. As Spring infuses everything it touches with happiness and movement, so can it wear a lot of bright, clear color. Even costume jewelry and plastic beads work very well. They express the exuberance, the enthusiasm for life that is felt even at the outer reaches of the Season.
If you’re young and want to wear violet eyeliner, be sure it comes from your Personal Colour Palette. Don’t buy a purpley grey or brown. It’s the color of the string on the necklace linked above.
5. Mascara is cool brown to black brown, depending on how dark you are. Black looks like spider eyelashes. Some of the dark-haired Bright Springs can wear black. Hard Candy makes a cool brown mascara. Smear a few out and look at them.
6. Wear your eye color and wear its complement color in clothing.
7. Wear a yellow-cream or yellow-peach eyeshadow hilite. It brings out yellow in the eye.
8. Think about accessories. The inside of eyeglass frames can have another color bonded to it. It looks cool, and I find it imaginative. Spring is a bit exaggerated and they can manage this effect nicely. (image linked to source)
These people are usually very fair. Some have ash hair and look like Summers. Some have yellow-green or brown in the eye and believe they’re Autumns.
The woman who gets my vote as most consistently ruined by makeup and clothing. At least, her hair is usually good. True of the Light Seasons, the less they put on her, the better, younger, real-er she looks. Here not too bad, but I searched.
This is a Light Spring eye. Notice that there there is yellow in it. It may be a green yellow, but it is certainly not an orange yellow. The eye belongs to Louise in the article Louise and Stevan Are Light Springs. Notice how cool and ash her hair looks and that she is not particularly light, though Stevan is. Notice too that the lashes are not very dark.
Repeat effects using makeup if eyes are blue or green will be the cream eyeshadow hilite or the cream waterline pencil, but go easy with this waterline thing. It can look bizarre quickly. If you love a pale aqua eyeliner, you’re under 25, and you are not in a professional situation, have at ‘er.
With Summer’s cooling effect, Light Spring still has more greys in their palette than browns. You want an eyeliner that defines without overtaking. Rimmel Stormy Grey is good. Summer may have left an unexpected charcoal rim to the iris and this repeats it nicely. Don’t ignore your grey clothes, for the same reason.
Keep makeup light in color. Don’t be talked into pops of color that just compete with what you are. Even contour eyeshadows should be light. Louise does not wear dark makeup.
If there’s green in the eye, wear your clear light red lips, even as a sheer. Red and green are complements.
Go easy on the frost. The Summer Spring blends have a deceivingly fragile complexion. Makeup effects can take over and fast. Do a thin shimmer in 1 place at a time, maybe inner corner of eye. Or maybe do a lipgloss over lisptick in a light peach-gold like MAC Instant Gold Lustregloss.
These are the fair-skinned, light-eyed, yellow blondes. Uma Thurman, Charlize Theron, Cameron Diaz are the stereotypes.
Same repeat effects as Light Spring if eyes are blue or green.
Brown eyeliner is good. Warm yellowed gray also works. As ever for Spring, it is not an orange brown. Can Spring still wear orange? Absolutely, a clear orange. It’s just that the browns are not oranged.
Balance the eye with lively lip colors. Flat and safe looks like Nicole Kidman in pale hair and lips. Spiritless in a Season based on the very opposite concept. The whole face, the entire presence is drained and diluted. True Spring can balance a lot of the right colors and look fantastic in them.
Brown eyeshadow is fine. Light and clear. Picture those women in beer and honey eyeshadow, it works. In flowerpot or antique deep gold, too heavy, doesn’t work.
Wear bronzer that’s not too yellow or brown. It should be a sheer, pale, yellow-golden-beige. This is Stila 01 at Sephora. Sweep it up onto the forehead, around the eye.
Add a touch of cheek highlighter in a light yellow gold if you’re young. This is the face of the glowing outdoors.
As ever, wear your eye colors from your Colours Book somehow every day. A scarf, a pin, an earring, a purse, a hairband.
The very fascinating Bright Spring never fails to surprise everyone, the analyst included. If the eyes are light, you’re wondering why they look so bad in Summer pastels, which is where you thought you were headed. If the eyes are darker, you’re wondering why Autumn drapes look tragic, while all the lines are eased away by the Spring drapes.
These women can use the light/dark contrast of dark brown or grey eyeliner with light eyes, because the darkness of the hair can balance it. The grey must be clean and crisp, and less dark than Winter. Merle Norman Galaxy and Annabelle Mercury are good.
They never wear brown in eye makeup very well, unless it’s a light taupe like Dior’s Earth Reflections. Notice (linked below) how there is no orange in the colors and they never get extremely dark.
They are deceptively light, though they don’t look it. The same rules of Spring apply, meaning not going overly dark or bold. This remains delicate skin.
Heather Karuza, who writes the very worthwhile makeup/nail blog at Coloruza.com…a Bright Spring could look like this. That could well be that Autumn-looking eye of this Season. The dark hair-light skin contrast makes one think of Winter, but this girl is not really all that dark. The skin on the throat is light and yellow.
Here, in clearer colors, showing also the Dior 5-shadow Earth Reflections.
Here in more Dark Autumn makeup.
You see why they’re so intriguing, ay?
(PS- Heather, if you read this, the e-mails from the site didn’t get to you. Hope it’s ok for me to post these links. If you prefer not, I’ll take them down. C.)
Valeria’s Personal Colour Analysis and makeup selection/application was performed by Maytee Garza. Maytee is the owner of Reveal Style Consultancy , located in Morristown, New Jersey. I thank Maytee for allowing me to use the results of this long-awaited PCA. Thank you to Maytee and Valeria for permission to reproduce the photographs. (Photos were taken in a mirror, if you notice a slight background texture).
If Dark Autumn announces that they’re going to build a boat in the garage, move the car out. With Autumn’s energy and quiet determination, and Winter’s opulent appearance, these people are predestined to create goals and reach them. The rest of the world knows enough to get out of the way.
Valeria saw herself as a Soft Summer for a long time. A restlessness with that conclusion caused her to visit Maytee. As she says, the experience is “amazing and traumatic…but I could not argue with what I saw in the mirror”. One of the best things about a Sci\ART PCA is that you will SEE your face change with the drapes. EASILY. It is not mystical and does not require an ounce of imagination. In our mirrors, you will see yourself look as bad as possible, and better than you ever have.
In 12 Season Colour Analysis, this person is essentially an Autumn, with a daub of Winter. Autumn’s palette is respected, in that the colours are mostly warm (though foundation is often neutral) and muted down. Unlike True Autumn, these are dark colours. Much darker. The most important thing about these colours is their darkness. Even the light colours are darker than anyone else’s.
I have found this Season hardest to pin down and generalize about. It’s not in the appearance, but in the person. They’re variable in character, always evident in the Neutral Seasons, but they’re elusive. There’s a mystery in the darkness that I don’t perceive in the other Seasons, even Dark Winter.
Sensible and straightforward as all Autumns, but direct in speech, and quick to absorb change with good evidence, they speak honestly and bluntly. What I love most, I believe, is that they are not one bit threatened or defensive about new ideas. The person may demonstrate more of Winter’s reserve, or more of Autumn’s passive and natural way, but there is always an element of fire.
Dark Autumn can look very Winter. The hair colour is often a most interesting bronzed black, easily just looks like black-brown. It’s the dark colour in this dress, from J.Crew. This model looks great. She combines Winter’s simplicity in the absence of neck and ear jewelry, with a dramatic effect at the wrist. She can balance what would be excessive weight and clutter on someone else. Even the shoes are great, substantial, stirring, and essentially the same as the hair color.
Avoid a cool red highlight or rinse. Though a Neutral Season, with both coolness and warmth in the skin, this is predominantly still warm skin. Auburn if you feel you must have red.
Avoid blonde highlights. They look like you’re frosting your hair with gray. The whole impression should be of luxuriant darkness. Highlights of any sort can break up the full-on, sensational dark force of this look.
Use a laminate to heighten the hot shine.
You’ll say Valeria’s hair looks good. Yes it does, but this woman has extraordinarily good skin. That can make an analysis much more difficult, because like children, it’s very forgiving. But, do the eyebrows seem a bit dark by comparison? Not only is there an imbalance, like something is being forced, but dark eyebrows can look very severe. Severe=aging.
This is my hair color visual for Dark Autumn : a coffee bean. Flip her hair color in your head. Did you feel the pieces click into place? You could even hear it. Could you see the bronze depth emanate even more from within the eye? The synergistic power, where the whole is so much more than the parts, roots you to the spot. Pick the lighter or darker roasts, choose the shade on the bean that matches the intensity of your look, but it’s those rich bronzed browns. Even in the almost-black haired people, there is a bronzed quality to the hair color. Find the colorist who can do that.
The Superlative Dark Autumn
…needs time to get comfortable wearing colours that should strike and excite the senses. The darkness mixed with the heat can feel volcanic. Just as the clear brilliance of Bright Winter’s palette should accelerate the viewer’s heart, so should Dark Autumn’s look evoke the distinct feeling of a controlled furnace.
…Like the sensation of hot sauce in your mouth, this is not a comfortable heat. It’s peppery and strong and undeniable. Valeria’s most telling comment, coming off of a Soft Summer self-image : “I nearly fainted when I saw the turmeric.”
The moment Winter appears in the picture, it tries to take over. A sharp feeling is in the air. In Bright Spring, where a hint of Winter is added to Spring, we see this powerful Winter effect again. Winter’s signal, inside and out, is power. But with Dark Autumn, there’s heat to contend with too. Like temporary containment, the pressure valve won’t hold forever.
…can wear black because they can balance the darkness, but can’t fully balance the coldness. Dark Autumn needs to heat black up. Wear gold or bronze jewelry instead of silver. Add flame colors, hot metallics, rich neutrals (from brown sugar to eggplant), and hot spice colours.
…do texture and weight better than anyone, and not simple tweed or corduroy. Oh, no, we’re talking velvet, leather, suede, metallic. Autumn’s strength and Winter’s wealth.
…can add theater, because it looks like tension and feels like excitement. Winter is never easy, it demands space and attention, just as Winter in personalities is not always easy. Everyone else has to adjust a little.
Dark Autumn’s palette is the feeling of dealing with food that’s almost burnt. Your attention is high, your movements are urgent while you ignore everything else. Red is already here now. Black is almost upon us. Something is about to happen. You feel it happening? You’re reading a bit faster. A reaction is demanded. There are only moments left till Winter’s black coldness descends. The viewer ignores everything (everyone) else. They feel the need to do something. We need a moment to catch our breath, dab the sweat, and calm down.
Pure Winter classic, gypsy fortune-teller, Aztec priestess, military command, jungle exotic, Middle Eastern bazaar, Spice Island queen, are all so good and so seldom played up enough. These are your best skin, your youngest face, your slimmest body. So much more than appearance, here we actually react to colour as flavor. Every sense organ seems invoked.
…look 10 years older in white. Every line is deeper and darker. In Summer’s light pastels, their skin looks like cement, and that’s not just me being descriptive. The skin looks like grey, rock-solid stone.
…grey the hair well. It heightens the drama. They look even better in the greys and the cooler choices in their Personal Colour palette.
…strive for a bronze glow in makeup, though not necessarily through use of bronzer. When you know your Season, you know your cosmetic colors. In right makeup, the colors diffuse away into your skin because they are already there. The ultimate in polish and sophistication, perfect balance, this is your best and healthiest (healthy=young) “no makeup” look.
This makeup is so gorgeous, I asked Valeria for the products used:
Maytee matched my foundation (not sure what brand she used but she mixed several for the right shade). Then she applied a sheer brightening powder on my cheekbones and if I’m not mistaken, a brownish/reddish/peach-ish blush, just a touch. On the eyes, she used: all over the lid, Navajo from Bobbi Brown; on the lid, Ash by BB, and in the crease, Hot Stone, a neutral matte brown, by BB. She then lined my eyes with BB’s Espresso eye shadow (especially good liner color on Dark Autumn) and used black mascara. On the lips, she used the Whirl pencil by MAC (its a mauve brown shade the same as my own lip color) and Givenchy Gloss Interdit in Coral Frenzy.
In Valeria’s Words
“My experience with PCA was wonderful. The process itself was great fun. However, anyone going into it with preconceptions: be prepared to have them shattered. Be prepared to trust your analyst, trust their training and years of experience, and be prepared to let go of how you used to see yourself. In this sense, PCA can lead to some profound revelations. For me personally, it was about more than just color and style. PCA gave me the answer I’ve been searching for, and with it, it gave me confidence and brought me to a new level of self awareness. It both empowers and releases. It also inspires.
Seeing yourself the way you were intended to be, being at your best and most beautiful, is a wonderful thing. Everyone should get the chance to experience it. There is nothing like it.”