Season Opinions

I appreciate every comment that has been offered on this site over the years. I also respect that those comments were made with intention to learn, but also with kindness, remembering that there is a human being on the other end.

A Place to Learn Together

By human being, I’m not referring to myself. I welcome all critique. Mostly, I want this to be a safe place to seek and find truth and the highest possible potential for me, you, and colour analysis. This site is also a record of my own growth as a colour analyst. I felt the need to remove all the videos from here and YouTube because I don’t recognize that person as me anymore.

However vulnerable in the moment, old patterns need to be seen for us to separate and leave them behind. We have to recognize mind chatter about colour analysis, as about all our beliefs. Our mind is driven to protect old beliefs that were acquired years ago when that was the best we had.

Photo: kaxmopp
Photo: kaxmopp


In what I’m about to say, I am not criticizing anyone. I am offering you a new strength. In trying to follow these new ideas, know that you are very supported by the many who have understood this now.

Kindness in the comments would encourage me to post more photos of how the Seasons of human colouring appear in the real world. Problem is, they end up on 100 Pinterest boards and a million other places over which I have no control. I know that you would love to see them and I would love to post them but I can’t protect the person’s privacy. If you have no concerns about where your photo ends up and have been correctly analyzed, send me your picture and I’ll be glad to post it (

Some have said that Hanka can’t be a True Winter (article A Blonde True Winter), or that I am not a Winter of any sort.

The Deal-Breakers

With every respect, how in the world could you know? The computer you’re reading this on denies you every single tool you need to evaluate, or even accurately see, human colouring.

You don’t have a grayed environment. You have a busy background that influences colours. You could be reading on your phone on the subway.

Instead of accurate lights, you have whatever lighting the time of day requires and the room you’re in offers. We have no idea what any person looks like till you see them in full spectrum lighting. Students remark on how surprisingly much faces changes just by switching from overhead room lighting to properly placed full spec lights.

You don’t have access to skin in the photos on this site. They’re wearing makeup. I’m happy to post photos of women with no makeup if you’d like to send me yours, email address above.

You don’t have drapes. Or anything else for the skin to react to. Of the many companies out there offering PCA services, I would have to hope that if we agree on one thing, it’s that the ‘analysis’ part of PCA refers to the evaluation of simultaneous contrast effects. That word, contrast? By definition, it means between two things.

You don’t even have the person! Ever met anyone who looks exactly like their photo? I haven’t.

Photo: stephmck99
Photo: stephmck99


Easy to forget about the water. Until something ripples it.

Be careful about the medium. It inserts itself so subtly that we don’t even know it. Media isn’t selling truth. It’s selling the medium. It’s selling itself. The newspaper isn’t selling the news, it’s selling newspapers. Five newspapers have 5 different versions of the news. Only 1 thing happened. People are only 1 Season. But the newspaper changed what happened and we forget that it took up the space between us and the real event.

The lights, the gray room, their purpose is to null the medium, to cancel it back to Zero Effect, so it can’t distort our perceptions in the ways it so very much does.

The Real Basis of PCA

There’s one other thing you might not have. A grasp of what real PCA is actually measuring: colours under the skin in the capillary layer where the blood travels. The so-called undertone layer.

That is where the truth of your colours is expressed and consistent, despite surface changes like suntans. At the level of circulation. That’s what the drapes are reacting to. We’re biologically adapted to see through skin and are hugely sensitive to tiny incremental changes.

Humans are gifted with the ability to see through human skin to some degree, as Dr. Mark Changizi has demonstrated and described in his book, The Vision Revolution (discussed in 12Blueprints article Different PCA Systems, Different Results). A photo or a monitor only gives you the surface. That’s the limit of what it’s capable of. Only real human eyes, connected to a human brain, looking at directly at another living human is capable of see-through vision, or Xray vision, as Dr. Changizi calls it.

That’s why gadgets that take photos of the surface are quite limited, unless I have mistakenly reduced their scope and they are in fact contacting the lower levels of skin. Now, if it’s just a surface photo, this would follow a very different practice of colour analysis than mine. Never mind how many times each step of the software altered the colours between the gadget, the computers, and your eyes. About 4 to 8 times. Kind of hopeless.

When I’m sent photos, I place no faith at all what they show me. I don’t say much because the medium has utterly clouded my analyst’s eyes. I wish women would stop sending me photos. Besides, I don’t believe I’m here to do it for you. I am here to ignite it in you, show you how to do it for yourself, and bring it to your communities.

Surface acquaintance may be why little machines that match foundation did not work for me. Foundation must match surface and undertone. Dark Winter surface skin can appear quite yellow. True Summer skin can tan quite golden, but when analyzed correctly with accurate drapes, the person remains a True Summer. We’ve proven this to ourselves in the training courses, depending on the models we had for that session. The foundation that matches them remains very cool unless they are quite tanned.

Photo: african_fi
Photo: african_fi


Amazing what cameras and computers can do.

But, listen, seriously, nothing against your skill. Maybe you’re a genius. IDK what you know and don’t know. You might be fabulous. How would I know how current you are or how many clients you’ve draped with excellent drapes?

I just know the medium is dangerous and pointless. You don’t have access to the lower layers of the skin. So you’re sunk. You have absolutely no accurate data from which to draw conclusions. All I’m saying.

Averages, Meanings, and Old Formulas

So what do you have? All you’re left with are the stereotypes and the patterns to fall back on. That’s all this medium can give you. It took away everything else. You’re forced to use averages. The old, wrong conclusions. You look dark so you must be a Dark Season. These walls need to come down for us all to move forward.

By the way, forget the words, OK? Dark, Light. It’s not about whether you look dark. Has nothing to do with it. There are dark, medium, and light looking people in each of the 12 groups. Sure, Steve Jobs dark is not likely a Light Summer, but Maggie Gyllenhal is entirely plausible.

When someone decides you look dark, they’re looking at your hair and eyes. The old, wrong patterns again. Do you really see Steve’s skin as much darker than Maggie’s? Did you even think about their skin? Dr. Changizi has shown that humans don’t register healthy skin of the same race as having hardly any colour – an evolutionary adaptation that allows us to be wildly sensitive to the slightest changes, and a brilliant one.

It’s not about whether you wear dark. Nothing to do with it. Everybody has light, dark, and medium colours in their native colouring and in their colour analysis swatch palettes. Hanka is a very normal darkness level for a True Winter, seen it numerous times. So is Kim Kardashian. And they go lighter than that. And they can have red hair. And yellow in the eyes. If you haven’t seen that being draped, how could you say if I’m right or not? What if I said that in the photo of Hanka linked above, the yellow hair colour is dulling her skin, lip, and eye pigmentation and from that photo, nobody has any idea what she looks like or what her native colours are?

The meaning of those words refers to how those kinds of colours react to your skin. That’s it. Let your analyst worry about the words. I need you to put your attention in the right place, which is learning to match your swatch book in stores.

Photo: aribertpet
Photo: aribertpet


Does anyone see their skin as very different? His teeth are cooler. Her eyes are darker. Wait, looking at wrong things, back to skin tone. Well…I just don’t know what to say. How much has to do with different ages? Between men and women?

We all play the guessing game. It’s fun and interesting. A colour analyst can recognize the mind chatter, that it’s just a reaction, and can clear it out when the analysis begins. She has been taught to recognize the far bigger picture.

We’re stuck in ruts so deep we don’t even know it. We need comparisons. Many different ones. Like training any muscle, we must give our lazy perceptions lots of different relationships, shock them, force them to adapt. If they’re right, they better be ready to prove it before I tell anyone they’re a Season.

12 possible outcomes, equal probability of each.

The guessing is done. The lights go on. The draping begins. You get your answer.



12 thoughts on “Season Opinions”

  1. I’m glad you wrote this post Christine. Thank you for being concerned about our privacy at a time in this world where apparently nobody else is concerned. I do love seeing your photos of women you’ve draped but I must admit that I am guilty as charged about pinning some to my Pinterest True Summer Board. I know computer screens all differ but it still helps me when I see all the variety within a certain season. I’ve had two SciArt PCA drapings and was a TSu both times when most everyone who just looks at me would immediately say Winter because of my dark hair and eyes. There is absolutely no way I could have been analyzed correctly by just sending my photo in to someone online or during a Skype. Must be done in person.

  2. I forgot to say that my Pinterest TSu Board is a private board only; not searchable at all.

  3. Christine, I have enjoyed reading everything that you have written. I read your book over and over. I also enjoyed every video and every picture. Thank you so much for sharing all that you have.. I wish you lived closer so I could visit you for a PCA.

  4. Whether you’re in person or not, doesn’t take away the fact that a fallible human is doing the draping. We’re all capable of mistakes. It is incumbent on the client to do their research and really understand the subject in order to get the best results. I believe in-person draping is ideal and the sci/art method is the most accurate scientific method. But in-person isn’t always available or affordable to everyone. I was “draped” online as a bright spring and I have no doubt that’s my season. But I did my best to take out the variables by taking pictures in all the same lighting-(the most neutral light I could find which for me was sunlight reflected at midday off a white wall), at the same angle, with the same camera and even double checked my skin tone in all the pictures by zooming in to just my skin to make sure my skin tone wasn’t being skewed by the camera, so the comparison between the pictures was as accurate as possible.
    Harmony is harmony, if photos were useless how can you comment on celebrities and their color choices? I know no one is declaring a definite season, but you can see when there is harmony and when there is disharmony. You are right photos have their limitations and it is good to be aware of that, but they can also be a tool for learning and comparing and seeing without bias(for me anyway.)
    I think the ability to see color accurately is a talent and I can see where some misunderstandings occur. Some eyes lack the physical ability to see minor color changes. Google munsell hue test if you want to test your eyes, just for fun.
    About Hanka, who I believe IS a winter, the confusion I think people are having is that her natural hair color is blonde. The black wig isn’t the best, because it’s not her hair color, but it’s not overpowering her either. She could pull it off if she wanted, but like you said, your best, most believable hair color is within two shades of your natural hair color. I’m a dark haired bright spring and there is no way blonde hair like my bright spring daughter’s would suit me.
    All in all, I would say, learn first, learn everything you can about color, let that knowledge sit and turn in your mind before attempting to use it. There are so many nuances and subtleties in color. And just when you think you know it all, another secret is revealed. And if you can afford it, go get draped and trained in person! I would do it just for the experience, not to start a business.
    I want to thank you Christine for sharing your journey and your knowledge with color so freely. I know you don’t like compliments but I owe so much to your search for truth and you have not only freed me, your spared my daughter the years of retail torture I endured. So thank you.
    Anyways, sorry to ramble. Just my two cents.

  5. What a great article for New Year- clearing the clutter from mind and website! It’s nice to hear where you’re at, Christine. Also to read the addons to older posts. Did I get this right- we can find stuff here to help us do it for ourselves? So can we feel confident if the proof of the pudding seems to be in the eating? I found the reiteration of any colouring any season inspiring again- I need to keep seeing this in writing! To add to this, I think some of us would like occaisional material about the personality/taste side of seasons. Maybe how that isn’t so obvious either. For instance, every time I settle for some kind of Winter because I’m arrested to catch myself in my ridiculously black coat in a shop mirror, when I still religiously believe I’m Summer- well then I reject all the pics of Wintry minimalist rooms and only Spring cuts it! I know what you’d say about falling in love with your colours eventually, but I think stereotypes can invade here too. You have set me off reading all around your site anyway. Long ,long may it continue.

  6. Hi Christine,

    What a great article. I do understand your need to have control over the photo’s, although I love looking at them and also at your video’s.

    I love what you write about draping, and that it’s the only way to know your best colors.
    Photo’s say nothing. Nothing at all when it comes to your true coloring.
    My personal believe is that you can’t analyze people just by looking at them.
    I know this by experience. You know my color history…….
    I’ve been talking color on the internet for over ten years, and I dare say intensively. Day in day out.
    All those years searching for my best colors, showing pictures, doing fun online tests.
    I have learned a lot about color, but never did I learn my best colors this way.
    In the end I did find my best colors by having a proper draping process. It was not a Sci/art pca, but I trust the outcome completely.
    And now there is a stillness in me. I’ve lost the desire to discus systems I don’t believe in anymore.
    I even lost interest to discus my colors or “season”.
    I know it’s right and I don’t feel the need to defend myself.
    All I can say – and agree with you – is that a person can look so different from what his/her season actually is. There is no telling by looking at the surface, the person’s appearance.
    Your coloring is a mystery hiding under your skin. I also believe it is hidden in the many layers of eye tissue, in your own ability to reflect and absorb light. There are so many factors we just can’t detect with our eyes. To measure is to know.

    I would love to evolve with you. I would love to read how we should shop with the fan, how to interpret all the new colors that the shops have in store for us and share new insights, good books.
    On my color board we use to say that it’s a color journey, and that it is.
    I enjoy traveling with you!

  7. Thank you Kim, Brenda, Katharine, and Susan. Sorry, Susan, I meant that my place is to teach others how to be great colour analysts. If I sent you the drapes and the training guide, I absolutely promise and guarantee that you would not know how to use them. They would sit there. We really do need to be shown what to look for. Nobody will figure it out on their own. After the first draping session with students, the response I hear most is, “That was not what I expected.”

  8. Hanka’s skin tone looks similar to mine, and I’m a Dark Winter, so why can’t she be a True Winter? Personally I would love to see more examples of different people who have been draped and found to be of the same subseason – some with lighter hair, some with darker eyes, bright Dark Winters and warmer Dark Winters, for example. But I do understand the privacy concerns. Thank you for your writing, Christine.I have learned so much from you.

  9. The more people I drape, the more I’m sure I could never know a person’s season otherwise. A BW with very “natural” body lines; a LSu I would have sworn was DA; a blonde who couldn’t balance a single warm drape; a gentle, soft-looking man who turned stunningly handsome in DW. I’m amazed and thrilled by these revelations every time.

  10. I’m still confused about Hanka and true blonde winters and would like to see a true blonde winter example after makeup and clothing analysis. I just don’t get why Hanka as a natural blonde would dye her hair dark brown instead if going with a brighter, cool blonde color or just left as she was. I do love this web site and everything you have done to educate.

  11. It is true that photos mean nothing. Prior to having a PCA, I sent my photo to a person who was intent that color analysis over the internet was viable. After hemming and hawing, the person told me that I was a soft autumn. But wait a minute, wait a minute, if the colors did not resonate with me, I was a light spring and I could send the colors back. Based on the virtual “makeup” placed on my picture in soft autumn colors which made me look *exactly* like my mother at my age, I believed the soft autumn analysis… though I didn’t like the fact that the certainty was not there in the analysis.

    I eventually splurged on the PCA to resolve the uncertainty (which, obviously, in the long run, would have been the least expensive option). I am a TRUE SUMMER. Not even CLOSE to the soft autumn/light spring I had previously been told (and in the PCA, the analyst first thought I would be light summer. I don’t think one of the warmer seasons crossed her mind).

    Unlike many true summers (from what I understand), I finally felt like I had found the real ME that had not been speaking up– I could not believe these dignified, classy colors were actually mine. It’s as though it was what I had always wanted to be but could never own.

    Anyhow, people who are reading this blog are not likely to be swayed by a virtual color analysis, but in the event that there are those reading who are newer in their color analysis journey, I can say with certainty that reliance on a virtual analysis and photos for a personal color analysis is a very bad idea. If it’s important enough to you that you are spending your valuable time researching all things color analysis, please get it done correctly and in person.

  12. Lynn, the dark brown is a wig she wore for a play. Her natural colour is light-medium cool brown, very normal colour for a True Winter. The photo with the dark hair was just to show that the windshield of her eyes is cleaner than in the blonde hair and the eye is more coloured. Yellow hair dulls the eye of many women. Not saying the dark is right, nobody’s skin can really support a colour much darker (or any darker) than the natural without becoming a little pale.

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