Thursday, 25 August 2016 Ultimate Color Resource.

If you are looking to learn more about the 12 seasons, there is truly no place better to look than Christine Scaman's blog. If you are contemplating getting a PCA done, have already gone through the process or are a potential analyst in training, it is a fantastic resource. 

Here is what you can expect to find:

Polyvore collages that enable you to envision your seasonal category.

In depth discussions on hair, eye and skin color and how they factor into the process.

12 blueprints certified analysts and their stories.

Color equations for the 12 seasons.

Cosmetics suggestions.

Getting adjusted to your seasonal category.

Visual representations of each season in nature and landscape.

Case histories of in real life clients.

I cater more to those of us who are pressed for time or have a short attention span. (NO offense intended....this is me!!) Christine is great for those of us who want to sip some tea and carefully consider every word. 

Whether you are completely new to color and style, or if you are an expert at using your palette and have graduated into putting together a capsule wardrobe, you will most certainly find something new to learn every time you visit her blog. 



Wednesday, 24 August 2016

The Dark Haired Light Season

Not everyone with dark hair is a Winter, or will be able to borrow from any of the Winter influenced palettes. Putting Winter colors on those who thrive on delicacy is a cruel form of visual punishment to every eye that sees the wearer. If you have naturally dark hair and look like a person with a high level of value contrast (see Inside Out Style Blog for more info.)  where do you go if dark and jewel tones do not fit? 

Too many well meaning image consultants in the know will go by outer first impressions and not take into account the underlying subtleties of individual coloring....the varying pixels in the eye, the myriad of colors in the hair, or the overtones and undertones of the skin. Everything works together. It only makes sense to wear a palette that is a direct reflection of how you were created. The goal is simply harmony....both on a physical and emotional level.

 When it comes to first impressions, the golden rule of a good image consultant is.....never make assumptions that someone fits into a seasonal category, when the opposite may be true. In applying this to yourself....if you have been trying to shoe horn yourself into a certain section of the 12 season palette and have met with utter frustration, maybe it is time to step back and consider that a season you never gave a moment's thought to may indeed be your perfect fit. Be willing to experiment with the one palette you have been overlooking.....the results can be surprising!

What if you are indeed a Light Spring or Light Summer yet do not fit the blonde stereotype? My advice is....don't worry about it so much, UNLESS at gut level, a Light season verdict for you feels intrinsically wrong. A newly declared seasonal category may feel like a complete left field surprise, which is to be expected, but it should never feel completely uncomfortable. The neon sign of "STOP" should not be flashing in your head like an auto dash warning light.

Take a look at your newly acquired palette. Pick out something about it you really like and start right there. :

Choose four colors. Two neutrals and two "color" colors. I suggest one of your lightest neutrals and one of your deepest. 

Two pairs of jeans. Place the fan right on top of the denim to make sure they harmonize. You don't want something super faded, but you don't want something overly dense looking. 

This: (From 1969 jeans......)

These beautiful lighter wash jeans from Nordstrom. Team them up with your relatively darker colors:

Not this. Too solid and weighty:

Four Polo or t shirts. Both Light seasons wear casual clothing better than anyone I know of. Here is a great Polyvore collection from Relateable Style for Light Spring. 

Thalia the Muse composed a really nice one for Light Summer:

Cosmetics are easy. A good mascara, some blush and two lip butters. Don't worry over anything else. I really like these visuals Christine Scaman from created because they make you think, "Aha!" in a way the color fans do not. :

Look at ideas as to how to put together your palette, but don't construct anything in real life until you feel ready to take that next step. These collages from Ford will get the wheels in your mind turning.

What would I do if this was my situation?

If I woke up tomorrow and found out I was a dark haired Light season,  I would do the following:

1) Gravitate to the brighter and darker lipstick and blush colors in my palette. Avoid mattes or heavy opacity. Shimmers, lip butters and pearl finishes preferred.

2) Wear blackest brown mascara or brown and go easy with it.

3) Use my hair color as a guide when choosing eye liner. Anything lighter or darker than this may be too anemic or harsh looking. Blend that line out so it has a soft edge to it. No harsh lines on the face. Ever. Ditch the liquid liner while I am at it.

4) Combine my lightest palette colors with my darkest or brightest to repeat what I look like in real life. I would not wear two of my lightest colors together like my blonde Light seasonal sister would.

5) Go for pearl or satin finishes in formal wear. Add bling, but make sure it is just a delicate spray of crystals like a shooting star.....not dripping in sequins. I am Summer and Spring....not Winter.

6) Stick with my Too Faced Perfect Flush Blush in Candy Glow. Wear Buxom Bombshell in a light wash with a duo fiber brush, remembering that a little on me still goes a long way. I might even choose a brighter coral or watermelon pink, applying it delicately. 

7) Read all of the information I can about Light Spring and Light Summer at starting with this article.

8) While I am at it, read this and this.

9) Do not allow anyone to talk me into highlights, just because I am a Light season. Not everyone is meant to wear blonde hair.

If you are a dark haired Light season, you are not in an alternative universe. Try following the above suggestions and see if things don't fall in place for you easier!



Monday, 20 June 2016

Your Summertime Skin Tone and Tanning

Vitamin D deficiency has become a popular health topic. Years ago, physicians would tell you to avoid the sun like the plague. Now, the case is being made for reasonable sun exposure. It is good for your bone health, mood, blood pressure, heart health and energy levels. can take Vitamin D3, but nothing substitutes for ol' Mr. Sunshine. If you want to know much, much more about the subject, please read this fantastic book. :

The other good thing about a natural tan not created by a bottle of self tanner or bronzer is, it will always be the correct undertone. Nature's way of developing your melanin will never turn you orangey or make your skin tone look dirty or thick.

The beauty benefits:

Here is what a little bit of color can do for you. You don't have to go the "tanorexic" route. (Please don't!)

Make you appear slimmer.
Your teeth will appear whiter.
You hair may get some nice, natural highlights.
Bring out your eyes.
Give you an inner glow.

All good things!

Let's break it down into how each seasonal category can look their best with some color. :

True Winters and True Summers have cool palettes. Bronzer and self tanners will be at complete odds with your palette, so stick to developing natural color if desired. You should get a nice rosy light brown glow if you do tan, depending upon your beginning skin tone. Your pinks, cherries, fuchsias and blues will stay in harmony with you as a result.

True Autumns and True Springs look great with tanned skin. True Autumns can freely indulge in bronzing powders. They are the golden goddesses among us! True Springs need to have a lighter hand with bronzing products, since it is easy for them to look muddy. Clarity and lightness are paramount in this case.

Dark Autumns and Bright Springs contain the most diverse group of women I have ever seen, so whether you want to use bronzers or self tanners is individual. I personally think Dark Autumns can better use bronzer than a Bright Spring. A Dark Autumn looks drop dead gorgeous with a tan. Bright Springs need to go easy on the powders, making sure the application is sheer.

Light Summer and Light Spring are truly "less is more" seasons. Chances are good, if anyone either has a hard time tanning or burns easily, it is these two seasons. If you are able to tan, don't overdo it. A gentle application of the lightest bronzing powder you can find is a good bet.

Dark Winters and Bright Winters are very close in palette to True Winter. Bronzers and self tanners in general are too warm and heavy on you. Opt instead for your natural undertones. You can insure your palette will stay in harmony with you as a result.

Soft Autumns can't successfully take on the metallic glow of their True Autumn sister. Because your palette has that bit of Summer influence, if you do want to use bronzer, bring your palette with you to double check for harmony. Soft Summers need to steer clear of self tanners and bronzing products, because it is at odds with the muted, rosy undertone they are known for. Go for your natural color, in this case.

If you DO decide to tan (your choice, of course) how do you use your palette? The warmer pinks, corals, greens, oranges and golds will be great places to try colors you may have not given a thought to before. You may be able to wear colors a little bit brighter in tone than your color space. You will have to experiment to see what works best for you. 

It is officially Summer in the Northern Hemisphere. Don't be fearful of some safe, moderate sun exposure! Your health and well being depend on it! The physical enhancements are merely icing on the cake! 




Monday, 18 April 2016

An Answer To A Long Standing Question.

How could someone be blonde or have light brown hair, yet be a Winter, Dark season or a Bright Spring? 

The answer to this question threw me off kilter for a while. How could either myself or my fellow members in the color and style community , fit palettes that seem our polar opposite?

Christine Scaman, the author of has a post in her blog that mentions this is a very frequently asked question. Please check out the link below and you will gain some insight.

Let me tell you what I have seen happen when one of my fair haired sisters dips into the wrong palette.:

The hair loses shine and radiance.

Any natural highlights disappear.

The hair tends to look flat, ashy and dull. I have seen light blonde hair actually turn gray. (Mine does if I wear True Autumn.)

Silver and gray hair looks dirty and yellowed, making someone think they need Shimmer Lights shampoo when they just need to change their blouse and lipstick.

Here is a link to Amanda Robert's color story...a classic example of a Bright Winter who thought she would be a Light Summer. Anything less than her brilliant palette would not be a harmonic match to her radiance.

Bottom line....if you think your hair has anything to do with your season, it doesn't. In the right palette, your seemingly "dull" "mousey" hair will come to life.

Here is a Before and After, with no additional wording attached to it. Would this lady look any better in a softer palette? In the Before, she looks like any other young person at a coffee shop. In the other, we are ready to listen closely to whatever she has to say, because her image is compelling.

I hope the above links will give my blonde, beige and light brown haired readers much food for thought.



Saturday, 9 April 2016

How The Neutral Seasons Wear Iridescence.

Aurora borealis crystal, mother of pearl, opals, mercury mist topaz. Fire polished beads. Art glass. Mylar decorations, foil. Depending upon your seasonal category, how you wear iridescence will differ. 

I consider iridescence and opalescence the domain of neutral seasons because the stones reflect both warmth and coolness to varying degrees. True warm seasons might not be liking the blues and the pinks that twinkle forth. True cool seasons will take issue with the peaches, yellows and golds that are part of the shifting nature of iridescent jewelry. 

Let's start with Bright Winter and Bright Spring. 

Bigger, more dramatic pieces set in shiny silver are such a great look any Bright Winter can wear with confidence, depending upon their style archetype. Some ladies might prefer a small set of stud earrings. Others might want to go for more opulence. 

Bright Spring might prefer something set in shiny metal that is more playful and fun. Sometimes a spray of sparkle or accents of it are more flattering than all out drama. 

Not every Light Spring wears small, delicate jewelry. Some need pieces that take up a little bit more real estate, yet don't have a heavy, ornate look to them. These earrings are perfect. They don't have a weighty outline and still fit within the seasonal category's parameters. Pastel toned opals? Perfect!

Light Summer softens down this look with tumbled, yet smooth gemstones. A little diamond accent is fine. It represents shine from the sun hitting a rain drop. Since Light Summer has a True Summer base, the feel of the jewelry can reflect the sun, sand and sea much more. 

No one wears Mother of Pearl better than a Soft Summer. In all of the Summer influenced seasons, the aura of shells, the changing tide, clouded sunshine and images of water all come together as one entity. 

Soft Autumn:

Soft Summer's beachy feel begins to wane. Earthiness and warmth without glittering too much or shouting for attention are hallmarks. I really like pearls with texture for Soft Autumns. Note how great these pieces look against a woven background. 

Dark Autumn. 

Winter is making herself known. Heaviness, opulence, depth and richness are all essential parts of how this palette works. Throw in a smattering of  gemstones and you have an awe inspiring look. 

Dark Winter:

True Winter is shouting a little bit louder. The margins are more clear cut, the sparkle more obvious, the drama even greater, yet a "grounded in the earth" feeling is still retained. 

If you have not experimented with iridescent or opalescent/pearl jewelry and you happen to be a neutral season, try some out! The great thing about jewelry is, it takes up a reasonably small amount of real estate, unlike a blouse or dress. Should you decide it is not for problem. There are a myriad of other jewels with all manner of different finishes that are just begging to be worn!



Sunday, 3 April 2016

The Light Spring, Soft Autumn Satellite Season Discussion.

Bright Winter and Light Summer. Dark Winter and Soft Summer. I call them satellite seasons because they are parallel to each other on the Sci/ART color wheel. The aforementioned seasons have been discussed and compared before. 

One satellite season grouping has not really been given the attention it deserves.

Now, it is time to give Light Spring and Soft Autumn the spotlight.

What these two seasons have in common.:

The hue of each overall palette is warm/neutral.

Both have a small dose of True Summer added to their hues.

They are the lightest color groupings of their respective parent seasons.

There is not a lot of contrast in either palette. People who are either season look great in monochromatic or blended looks with analogous colors.

Neither season looks good with pops of color, as their native design does not support that type of look. 

Black is one of the worst colors they can wear.

The differences. :

Soft Autumn has as it's base True Autumn. The colors are textured and heavier in weight. Terra cotta, pebble, stone, soft gold, putty, olive green, copper, dusty denim blue, antique rose, warmed plum and loden green comprise the color selections. 

Light Spring has as it's base True Spring. The colors are light in weight, floaty, ethereal. Clear ivory, light nutty brown, clear warm gray, light gold, clear peach, pistachio, pastel aqua, popsicle pink, daffodil and periwinkle make up their rainbow. 

So, the question comes up...since both palettes contain some True Summer, and both are the lightest in their categories, can either of these ladies borrow from their satellite season palette? 

The answer to that is, "No.", and I will explain why.

1) A Soft Autumn needs depth. She looks so good in medium to deeper tones with a blended landscape. A Light Spring would look like she was wearing a horse blanket in the Soft Autumn tones. Her face would look shadowed, dusty and heavy. Her sunbeam light would be extinguished.

2) Conversely, Light Springs need a little bit of brightness and clarity, but they also need a bit of milky soft white to take the intensity down a bit. If a Soft Autumn tried to wear the Light Spring palette, she would look like the rest of us if she were wearing candy colored baby clothes. Furthermore, the relative brightness of the Light Spring rainbow would make this woman's complexion look moon faced and oily.

3) Springs in general have absolutely no tolerance for Autumn, or any season that is blended with Autumn. It makes their skin tone look very muddy and thick. Pores look larger and lines deepen. 

4) Autumn's can't go near Spring of any type. It makes their skin look ruddy, oily, irritated and grays the eye color. The brighter color will push the lady into the background. 

Soft Autumn color equations: Medium value, warm/neutral hue, low chroma. 

Light Spring color equations: Light value, warm/neutral hue, medium-high chroma. 

For a more in depth discussion on each of these seasons, please click on the links below. :

If you are a Soft Autumn or Light Spring, feel free to admire your satellite season while at the same time, meditating on how alive and refreshing you look in your own palette.