Skin tone is important. When you have a good sense of your tone, not only can you find the right foundation and lipstick shades, you can make better choices when it comes to clothing colors and jewelry. Here are some tips from the skincare researchers at Adore Cosmetics on how to define your skin tone.
Determine your surface color. Your surface color is the tone you see when you look at yourself in the mirror. Fair skin is the lightest type and burns easily. If you have light skin but with beige or yellow undertones, you are in the light category. Medium skin has a slightly darker color, sometimes with olive undertones. And dark skin has a deep complexion. The best way to determine your surface color is to look at your jawline, which is less affected by skin color changes than the rest of your face.
Check your temperature. Skin tone falls into three basic categories—warm, cool, and neutral. Warm skin tones have yellow or olive (earth) undertones. Cool skin tones have blue or pink undertones. And neutral skin tones have no obvious overtones of sallow, olive, or pink. To get an idea where you fall on the temperature scale, you can check the veins on the underside of your wrist. If they appear bluish, you are cool. If they are more on the green side, you are warm. Having trouble determining which color you see? You probably have a neutral skin tone, which is good news—you will look good in both warm and cool shades.
Open your closet. Naturally, you will look and feel best in colors that flatter your skin tone. If you gravitate toward shades such as beige, cream, orange, warm red, brown, and yellowish green, you have warm undertones. If you have more blues, purples, pinks, greens, plum, magenta, navy, and blue-green in your wardrobe, you are probably cool. And if you have a mix of warm and cool, you may have been gifted with neutral undertones, which allow you to pull from both groups.
Think of your celebrity look-a-like: Do people tell you you look like Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore, or Susan Sarandon? Chances are you have a warm skin tone. Are you blonde with fair to medium skin like Emma Stone, Kirsten Dunst, or Gwyneth Paltrow? Then you are probably more cool. Brunettes with fair to medium skin such as Julia Roberts and Jennifer Garner are usually neutral to cool. Dark brunettes with medium skin like Sandra Bullock, Demi Moore, and Penelope Cruz most often fit into the warm category. And darker-skinned, black haired beauties such as Zoe Saladana and Halle Berry are neutral to warm in hue.