Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Warm Fair Skintones

 Recently I watched a video in which a makeup artist said that the women with very fair, but warm complexions have the most difficult time getting the right foundation.  I can attest to this to some degree because I've always struggled with foundation.  Most companies assumed that very fair skin has a pink undertone, which seems a strange assumption to me but perhaps it's more typical.  I do not and pink toned foundation sits on my face like a mask.  Products are much better now and I've reached a stage in life where I rarely wear foundation though a dab of concealer is useful at times.  I find my best match wherever a very neutral bisque or ivory can be found.  L'Oreal True Match N1 is the colour that disappears into my skin.

Many colour consultants and online sources seem to assume that someone with autumn colouring will have a sort of golden glow.  I think this is simply enhanced by Hollywood's penchant for that so that all of the celebrities who are examples of Soft Autumn are usually wearing fake tans or loads of bronzer (or both)    They are also likely to dye their hair blonde.  So, although fair skinned brunettes who are Soft Autumn must exist, it's not easy to find them in celebrity examples.

I went searching.  It was hard.  This model below has beautiful pale skin but the golden glows abound elsewhere even if they remain light-medium in tone.

                                                         Fair skinned soft autumn

                                                           J Crew

I love this image.  I love the colours and the casual boho vibe, even though it would drive me nuts to wear all of those beads.  I love the unexpected combination of rust with pale aqua and soft mauve.   This model looks great in these colours and her skin is not golden-tanned.  I love the contrast between the darker brown hair and the fair skin and yet it is still soft.  The makeup is pretty and natural looking and I'd love to know what that lip colour is.

This may not be Soft Autumn but could actually even be deep autumn.  What I find useful about this photo though is that this skin, which is not overtly warm, looks good with these warm colours.  It's difficult to get examples of neutral or warm pale skin tones.

Drew looks great here, in neetral-warm tones.  That's the lipstick I've been chasing my whole life.

Molly Sims often looks very golden in photos but here she looks less so.  Still fair skinned and warm.

 It was hard work, but I persevered.

Very fair skinned but warm, suiting nude and blush tones, apricots and warm pinks best,  the stunning Emily Browning.  At first glance she does look sort of soft pink, but it's a warm pink. 


Drew looking soft and golden.  Although blonde as a child, her natural hair colour now is a lovely rich brown.  Still she suits  some warm caramel tones.  I have seen pictures of her looking quite fair skinned, especially in the 90s with the grungy pale.

 Warm skin just doesn't always look the way you think it should.  Basically you know it's warm toned skin (or cool toned) based on how it reacts to the warm or cool drapes.

Here is an Autumn woman with fair and very pink looking skin.  Her eyes are like jewesl and her skin glows.

 This woman thought she had cool toned skin.  She thought she was a Winter because she did recognise the need for deep colour saturation.

Here she is being Wintery.  the difference is amazing even though you'd look at the Winter pallete and think, yeah these look like they match my skin.  The right colours for hair and clothing take years off her look and she just glows.

 She doesn't seem to be blogging anymore but I found these pictures on her blog.

The analyst who did her draping is also a fair and pink skinned Autumn. Dark Autumn, even!.

 Various DIY tests are suggested.  Some analysts offer hints and tips to find your type for yourself and others insist it can only be done with an in person draping by a trained analyst.  Colour me skeptical.  However, it's not easy and there is much room for error.  If I had the access to an analyst (and the money for the analysis plus the travel it would require)  I would consider doingit.



 Another celebrity I've seen listed as a Soft Autumn is Melissa McCarthy.  Photos of her with very fair skin and very dark hair are most typical but this one seems to be showing colouring that's a little more natural.

 Minimal makeup, highlights and a definite golden look to her skin, I notice those silver looking earring look right so she must be fairly neutral in her colouring and can wear silver or gold.


My skin tone looks something like this outdoors, too.  When I take photos indoors, attempting to get really strong light so that the colours show up properly and I don't get an exaggerated contrast of light and dark in my own colouring, it tends to cool and lighten my skin even more.  We usually see her looking more like this, fair skin, light pink makeup and darker hair for a more striking contrast.


Who knows, with photography, lighting and makeup, it's difficult to know a celebrities real colouring but I find it difficult to know my own too.  In photos I look like pale-face Melissa and in the bathroom mirror (which has a large skylight for natural lighting) I look more like golden Melissa.

I couldn't resist adding this photo because I think this is stunning.  This woman has been draped as a Dark Autumn and her very fair skin does not look strikingly golden at all.  This is so stunning I want to be a Dark Autumn too.  As with Dark Winter though, the darker colours often seem to swallow me up.  Colours are right when they match your own depth of colouring.  Depth does not mean darkness, but is a less definable quality.  These colours do not compete with her. 

                                                   Pinterest- dead link

It's easier to find fair skinned Dark Autumns, perhaps because they really can't pull of blonde hair and spray tans.  The Soft Autumns can, though it may not truly be their best look.  Anyone who can get away with looking golden will do so in Hollywood Land.  This woman is not only fair she has a noticeable mauve-pink tone in her colouring.  And yet she looks amazing in the warm, rich colours.

Looking at her I now cannot imagine her in pink and yet wouldn't her blush tones guide you thinking her colouring is cool?  That rose-mauve lip looks fantastic and natural.  

Well, now I am wishing I were Dark Autumn I will go back to the top of the page and admire the Soft Autumn image, the category where I am more likely to fit.


  1. I think I am somewhere in between the rosy cheeked autumn and the Drew Barrymore colouring - who I have been compared to before but I do think it is mostly due to our similiar colouring. I can go blonde/golden to a point, but more than a couple of shades too light/cool the blonde drains me,something my hairdresser has never accepted because the hairdresser's motto is "avoid brassiness at all costs!" The last set of highlights she did were far too cool and white. Drew's golden mid brown roots with golden blonde highlights is something I strive to achieve. I don't trust that the still of Melissa McCarthy wasn't airbrushed to make her more golden, she is very ruddy cheeked in early Gilmore Girls episodes especially, though she definitely looks great with auburn shades in her hair I think. My skin also photographs white and my hair red, it is so hard to get a true capture of our colouring!

    1. When my hair is lightened it is best if it is warm, brassy is not the goal but more strawberry blonde than cool blonde. I haven't had highlights in years though. I like Drew best as a brunette and no highlights but then I do tend to like brown hair for it's anti-Hollywood aspect. I seem to get darker darks and lighter lights in photographs, which is why I used that one photo of myself in bright sunlight and put that next to the soft summer and autumn palettes. It's not the best photo but it's more accurate with colouring. So many of my blog photos make me look pale with dark hair. I can see how you might e compared to Drew. There is something about your youthful face. :-)


I love visitors and I love comments. I will try my best to respond to everyone! Thanks for stopping by.