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How to Choose Colors to Flatter Your Skin Tone

The lipstick you just bought looked so divine on the celebrity walking the red carpet, but it makes you look like you're from another planet. Get the most flattering hues for you with these tips.


  • Step 1: Assess skin tone Assess your skin tone as either cool or warm. Hold a white sheet of paper up to your face to identify the main color you see in your skin. If you're still confused, put on a white blouse and then a cream-colored blouse. If you look better in the white, you're likely cool-skinned and if the cream one is more flattering, you have a warm skin tone.
  • TIP: See which jewelry tone is most flattering. Silver jewelry will look best against cool-toned skin, while gold jewelry will make warm tones glow.
  • Step 2: Choose foundation Choose a foundation and powder with blue or pink undertones if you have cool skin. Warmer skin tones should wear a yellow-based powder and foundation.
  • Step 3: Choose blush Go for a pink, beige, or tawny-hued blush if you have cool skin. Warm tones look best in plums, auburn, copper, or bronze. If you have tan skin, try peaches, corals, apricots, and oranges.
  • TIP: Cool tones should generally avoid earth tones, which work best on warm skin tones.
  • Step 4: Choose lipstick Select lipsticks and lip liners based on their dominant color. If they're primarily warm red, brown, magenta, or purple, they'll look great against warm skin. Cool skin will come alive with orangey red, light purple, and pink.
  • Step 5: Choose eyeshadow Choose white, silver, gray, pale blue, purple, or dark green eye shadow if you have cool skin. Warm skin will look great in bronze, coral, red, pink, cream, light brown, and soft green.
  • Step 6: Choose clothing Wear clothing colors that flatter everyone, regardless of skin tone or even hair color, due to the fact that they fall in the middle of the color spectrum -- not too cool or too warm. They are eggplant, Indian Teal, true red, and soft rose -- which is between light pink and peach.
  • FACT: A study by the University of Durham, England, found that athletes in sports competitions who wore red were more likely to win than contestants wearing other colors.

You Will Need

  • White sheet of paper
  • White shirt
  • Cream-colored shirt
  • Makeup
  • Universally flattering clothing colors
  • Gold and silver jewelry (optional)

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