November 17, 2022

Why the Color Wheel is Important (and a FREE Skin Undertone Quiz)


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“What colors look best on me”?

My students ask me this questions all the time. With over 18 decillion color variations (that’s 18 with 33 zeros), is it any wonder why? We can all benefit from a reliable roadmap to help us navigate the wide world of color. 

Enter the Color Wheel. 

The Color Wheel

Once you learn how to choose colors from the color wheel, styling your makeup becomes much easier (and a lot more fun). To navigate the color wheel, you must first identify the temperature of your skin’s undertone. Your skin undertone is your guide to interpreting the color wheel to choose colors best suited to you.

Warm and Cool Colors

The best colors for warm skin tones are on the right side of the color wheel. Red, orange, yellow, and yellow/greens are optimal for warm skin tones. Alternatively, the best colors for cool skin tones range from blue/green, blue, purple, and shades of red that trend more towards purple (i.e., berry, plum, and burgundy). 

Does this mean that you shouldn’t wear red lipstick if your skin’s undertone is cool? Absolutely not. I firmly believe everyone can (and should) wear red. However, wearing it well requires a basic understanding of tertiary colors. 

Tertiary Colors

Here are two shades of red lipstick.

The one on the top is cooler than the one on the bottom because it trends more toward the blue/purple or cool side of the color wheel. However, the red on the bottom leans toward a warmer red/orange color. Knowing the difference will determine whether your red lipstick knocks it out of the park or looks out of place. 

Still uncertain whether you have a warm, cool or neutral undertone? Take this one-minute quiz to determine whether your skin undertone is cool, warm, or neutral.

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