Updated: Feb 5
Now why would we say this? Not even weekly facial peels are going to help you if your hair colour is too golden/dark/warm/cool for your complexion. The wrong choice of hair colour, eyeshadow, and blazer colour is often to blame for making one look too pale, tired, older, or even scary.
We have so much choice, on all of our tonal variances. It's wonderfully good fun – the change potential – but unless you shop forearmed with the true knowledge of how colour can literally rocket power your beauty quest, there is a good chance that 2 out of every 3 fashion buys will not serve you in the way you are hoping.
I remember wanting this pale peach slip dress when I was younger and my mum would say, “It does nothing for you.” And I would say, “what is it supposed to do?” I was a teenager then so of course I don't remember a satisfying answer, but the answer is: that colour, in its nearness to your face should match, intensify, or reflect your undertones. Like a luminous painted portrait, you have layers. Place the right colour alongside and undertones become more apparent – making you glow a little. Use the wrong colours and cancellation of tone occurs, fine lines stand-out, and your eyes and skin look duller..
Your face is the focal point; your hair, makeup, and top/scarf/jewellery can give you near-perfect lighting even if you're mired in fluorescents all day. Fashion magazines bombard us with near perfect images of pubescent women without spot or wrinkle. However the truth is that we have been given our very own "re-touch" software and it's free! Well almost!
Colour and all its variations is a gift of nature - it's all around us and if we choose to embrace it and apply it correctly then better than our trusted Touch Éclat - it can literally take years off us. With just a little understanding I have seen women transform the way they think about their wardrobe and themselves as they discover that it was actually all those drab greys, black and navy's that were making them feel so dull and uninspired in their daily dressing routine. Yet by choosing cooler ash highlights instead of the warmer golden variety they suddenly look brighter and fresher and that's even before they reach for their favourite concealer
So how can I learn what my undertones are? (Did I just read your thoughts?)
Well it's not easy and phoning a friend may help in your endeavour or of course, a trained expert (cue shameless plug) but there are some steps you can do that will certainly help you part of the way?
Step One: Take all your make up off. Being fresh faced is vital to being able to see the changes in your eyes and skin tone?
Step Two: Take something white, like a napkin or towel and then something a Ivory or cream..perhaps a blouse or pillow case. Compare the fabrics so you can see the difference. One will appear warmer, more yellow and more subtle in appearance.
Step Three: Place them one at a time along your neck lines you so see your face plainly against the fabric..
Step Four: What are you seeing? Does the white draw all the colour from your cheeks while the Ivory seems to add a subtle warmth and glow to your face. Or does the white brighten up your eyes and make the rosiness of your lips jump out while the cream fabric seems to make you look more sallow and patchy, and has you grabbing for your compact.
If it's the white one, chances are you have cooler undertones to your complexion and want to be choosing a cooler range of colours to wear. If its the ivory (slightly warmer white) then you probably have warm undertones to you skin so opt for warmer colours.
For too long colour has been relegated to a whimsical fancy of the designer, a pantone number on a paint card or a seasonal trend according to our yearly climate. While the reality, which has been hidden in plain sight, is that it actually has an equal standing to it's style counterpart. While red may be the fashionable party dress to be wearing this Christmas, a true crimson red will get her noticed for all the wrong reasons while that deeper more tomato hue would in fact draw us to the strong, vibrant essence of its wearer long before we even comment on the design. And if we are honest it merely a cleverly constructed piece of fabric embracing and portraying who she is...