Under My Skin – The Story About Skin Tones

What’s your skin tone?

You’ve probably heard of cool and warm skin tone.
You may have read about summer type, autumn type or spring type, categorising skin tones into four seasonal types.

Why fuss over skin tones?

When we look around in a Mall or a bank, we see many people with coloured hair, but once in a while we notice a person with an “amazing” hair colour. It’s normally not an unusual colour, it’s just that it fits the wearer perfectly.
Defining and knowing your skin tone is helpful in many ways. To better choose the clothes that really suit you, to find the best make-up choices and most importantly to find the perfect colour for your hair.

To divide skin tones into warm or cool is like saying people are tall or short.

It’s not entirely untrue but it misses the point.

While there are certainly tall persons and short ones, most people are somewhere near average. In the same way, most people’s skin is somewhere near neutral, only few have very warm or very cool skin tones and they are easy to identify.

Many people in the Philippines believe that skin tone is about lightness or darkness of one’s skin but that is not so.

It’s all about undertones that can range from delicate porcelain to vigorous olive, from soft pinks to peaches. Seeing these tones is only possible in very good light conditions.

The best is indirect sunlight in neutral conditions. That means, near white or cream coloured walls with no strong coloured objects or green plants nearby as these would reflect on your skin and alter its tones. For a more detailed assessment, see a professional make-up artist or ask the colourist in your salon.

Here’s what you can do yourself:

Take 2 sheets of paper or plastic, one golden yellow, the other royal blue. Stand in front of a mirror and holding first one, then the other under your chin with your thumb and forefinger pulling the corners up under your ears. If yellow makes you look better, your skin is definitely warm, if blue looks good, your skin-tone is cool. If you find it hard to decide which one looks better, you are probably near neutral.

  • Warm tones go with colours Red, Gold, Caramel
  • Cool tones go with Colours Ash, Matt and Violet
  • Neutral colours are soft Browns, Mahogany and Basic Shades.
  • Another way to find your skin tone is via lipstick. That’s right. Most people know instinctively what colour lipstick looks good on them.
  • If you can wear Fire Engine Red or bright Orange, your type is warm.
  • Those who prefer Purple, Violet and Earth-tones, have usually cool skin colour.
  • If you prefer soft pinks and pastel shades, you have a slightly warm tone.
  • However, if your choice is sheer and nude, you’re most likely neutral.

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