Adding Color To Your Look
Updated: Jan 21
I have a friend whose favorite color is purple. Everyone knows this because chances are good that on any given day, she’s wearing it. Not head to toe purple, but somewhere on her person, you should be able to find it. And not just any shade of purple, but the absolute perfect shade of purple for her. In fact, no matter what color she may put on, it’s always the perfect shade of whatever-it-is.
Her education in color wizardry began with being draped with swatches back in the 80’s when Color Me Beautiful was enjoying it's popularity. That’s when she started wearing “her colors”. Since then, this whole idea has expanded to include more variations in any given color season. Thankfully though, you can find lots of help online to determine how you fit into a color season.
Determining your colors has gotten a little more complex since those 80's days. If you are a "summer" like me, are you a soft summer, clear summer, or dark summer? (Hopefully this won’t send you into a panic). Some color experts say that you don’t have to think of your best colors in terms of a season but rather that you can wear any color as long as it’s the right chroma (the amount of gray in it) and brightness (the amount of white or black in it).
At any rate, my purple-loving friend has been wearing the right shades for herself for quite some time. Her method clearly works for her. Even though she is a mere mortal (I know because I've seen her before she works her color magic), she's always looking her best. She could be wearing a tee shirt and jeans but you don’t really notice because she just looks so darn good. One could say she’s gifted at being able to figure out the right color, but during a recent birthday luncheon I asked her how she does it. She replied merely with “I just wear what looks good!” The rest of us just looked at each other, slightly stunned. “Is it really that simple?!”
In theory it sure sounds like it but in practice not so much, at least for me. It certainly takes patience and lots of trial and error. I’m not an expert on this by any means, but I know it when I’m wearing the wrong color. The overall feel is just off. My coloring can look sallow. I don’t feel good about myself (This is probably a good place to mention the whole idea of color psychology; that color has an impact on our brains and how we feel). I don’t know about you, but wearing the wrong color can put a huge damper my confidence. Sometimes tweaking my makeup can help, like putting on vibrant lipstick or paying special attention to my eye makeup. If none of that works, then the offending item goes into the donation.
On the other hand, when I get the color right, my skin kinda sparkles. Who doesn’t want that? Navy is the new black for me since it bestows a little of that magic on my skin and eyes. This has been a big incentive to build my neutral wardrobe around it. After going heavy on the navy for some time, I’m finding that I’m craving some fun accent colors. I'll have to report back on how that goes.
How about you? Do you know what kind of colors look best on you? Do you like to wear lots of different colors, or just a few? Are you confident in your choices, or do you find it somewhat daunting? Let’s try to be more like my friend and give this a go. Embrace the process and have some fun with it. While you're at it, please pass me my lipstick.