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The Upside of Knowing Your Undertone

21 May, 2015 - 08:03pm by - First Lady | 20 Comments

Article by BR Kellie

You know how sometimes you pop on a bit of red lippy and it looks weird? Which is strange because other red lippies look fine on you? Or maybe that new foundation you’ve just applied is making you look drawn and tired, whereas your usual foundation makes you look like you’re glowing. More often than not it all comes down to your undertone, and how it’s relating to the undertone of the product you’re applying. 

Now your undertone isn’t the same as your skin colour, it’s not the colour of your skin it’s the colour underneath your skin, and for most of us it’s either cool or warm. So how can you tell which undertone you have? Here are three easy ways to help you suss it out.

The vein test: Take a look at the veins on the inside of your wrist. Are they blueish or purply? Then chances are you’ve a cool undertone. If they’re green you’ve a warm undertone. Can’t tell whether you’re sporting green or blue veins? You may have hit the jackpot and be a neutral tone, which means you can get away with pretty much any colour.

The jewellery test: Think about the jewellery you wear. If you prefer silver, chances are you’ve a cool undertone.  And if you like to wear gold? You guessed it, you’ve a warm undertone. And once again if you can wear silver or gold and they both look fab, you’ve a neutral undertone.

The clothing test: Think about the clothing you wear. Which pieces can you pop on and feel a million dollars in? You know the items I’m talking about, they make your eyes sparkle, your skin look fresh, and people will no doubt lavish you with ‘you look great today’ compliments. If those colours are rich jewel tones, like purple, emerald greens and blues, you’ve a blue undertone. If they’re pinks, oranges, reds and even olive-green, welcome to the warm undertone club. And if people say you look great in everything you wear (you lucky, lucky woman), you’ve a neutral undertone.

So how does this apply to the makeup you choose to wear? Buying the right nail polish to suit your undertone is pretty easy – just think about the clothing colours you wear that make your look pop and attract those wonderful compliments, and work around the same sorts of shades. Foundation however can be a little tricky, especially if you’re buying in a place with no natural light. You want to see if the foundation holds a cool or warm undertone, (which is made easy if the brand features the words ‘cool’ or ‘warm’ in their descriptions or names), take a look then pick out the colours you think match your undertone, then if possible test them, or take home testers, and be sure to wait a few minutes after applying to see how the product reacts with your skin. If it’s too pale you’ll look ill, too dark and you’ll look like you’re wearing a mask, but if it’s just right it’ll blend in beautifully.  Lipstick can also be a little dicey because you have to pay attention to both your skin colour, eye colour, hair colour and your skin’s undertone, but once again the basic rule of thumb is to ensure the undertone of the lipstick suits the undertone of your skin. So if you’re wanting a red lipstick and you’ve a cool undertone, look for a lippy with blue undertones. If your undertone is warm, pick up the red lippy with a hint of orange undertone. And, once again, if you’re neutral... well, you can buy them all!

So there we have it – the basics of undertones. Have you already warmed up to this idea? Are you cool to give it a go next time you hit the beauty stands? Do you have any tips and tricks you use to help find the right shades for your tone?

Chat away!


Comments

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17th July, 2015

This is awesome advice... having recently purchase a lippy that looked fabulous on another BR member and it's a completely different shade on me. It was very confusing this whole undertone business :) saving this article to my favorites <3

26th May, 2015

Thanks for the great article. I have hear the vein test before but they never mentioned neutrals only warm and cool tones. I thought maybe I was going colour blind because I couldn't tell if my veins were green or blue, I must be neutral!

24th May, 2015

Oooooooo I never knew my undertones but now I can find out for myself! I love this thank you. New fave article being added to my faves.

24th May, 2015

I am passionate about getting our colours right and linking this to our make up and even hair dye makes so much sense. I'm cool undertones and For years I tried to get blonde foils in my dark brown hair. I always left looking brassy or just wrong...until I read an article that told me I CAN do blonde, but it needs to be a cool blonde such as ash blonde or platinum blonde. My next trip to the salon was much more successful and I was surprised at the difference it made. If I could deal with the up keep i might go platinum all over! Now that WOULD be fun.

24th May, 2015

Another great read thanks Kellie. And I bet the first thing we also is look at our wrists :-)

23rd May, 2015

This was so helpful! Thank you very much!!

23rd May, 2015

I'm a neutral undertone;)

23rd May, 2015

Very cool article! I'm a cool cat :-)

22nd May, 2015

I have cool undertones and very fair skin, and can't pull off wearing my favourite colours :(

22nd May, 2015

Spot on Kell, I definitely look better with the warm tones but my upper level veins are definitely green but the deeper ones are purple. I think I will stay with the warm tones though as only can pull off the cool tones in summer when I have a tan for some reason.

22nd May, 2015

Oh my - I can remember my mum having one of those parties back in the 80's with the colored fabrics being draped over people to determine if they were warm or cool and the colour that suited them! I think I was told warm back then ( when I would have been 5-ok 7) But I haven't really given it a thought until now. Time for a wardrobe sort I think!

janini9
23rd May, 2015

I went to one of those parties back in the 80's and still have my swatches.

22nd May, 2015

Great article thank you BR :-) I'm definitely a cool undertone

22nd May, 2015

This is great but I'm confused because I feel like I'm a warm tone (veins definitely green) but I seem to suit blue based red lipsticks rather than orange based ones. I wonder whether our skin tone varies in different parts of our body?

22nd May, 2015

When it comes to the vein test I'm warm toned, when it comes to jewelry I prefer gold but silver also looks good and when it comes to clothes I'm a fan of jewel tones but also wear some warmer shades like olive-green and pink. I don't think hot pink suits my skintone, I think it suits lighter skin so much but my partner loves it on me. I recently started wear fuschia lipstick and he liked that.

22nd May, 2015

This article made me look at my veins lol.. I think Im bluey green. Anyway now I will think about what colours I choose.

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