Source: Benjamin Stone
- There are three skin undertones: warm, cool, and neutral.
- Knowing your own undertone can help you find the most flattering makeup hues.
- Take this quiz to help determine your skin’s undertone.
When it comes to choosing the most flattering makeup hues (and especially when finding a foundation shade), it’s important to consider your individual skin tone: are you a warm, cool, or neutral? It’s basic color theory: picking the right colors based on your hair color, eye color, and natural undertones will, after all, accentuate your features and make you glow.
But finding out what your skin’s undertones are isn’t always the easiest task. Unless you’re a professional like a makeup artist, it can be tricky to tell if you’re actually warm-toned or cool-toned. Luckily, there are hacks to make it easier — and they don’t include paying a visit to a beauty salon. We created an easy quiz below to help you uncover more about your complexion. By answering just six quick questions, you’ll be matched with the undertone of your skin, putting to rest the question you’ve been asking yourself once and for all.
What It Means to Have a Warm Undertone
If you have a warm undertone, it typically means your skin tone has hints of yellow, gold, and peach in it. This means makeup with brown, gold, and copper-toned shades look best on you. So if you’re feeling stumped on eyeshadow colors to try, those are always a safe bet. It also means foundations that lean more yellow and golden will complement your skin color.
What It Means to Have a Cool Undertone
If you have a cool undertone, you probably have hints of blue and pink in your skin tone. Equally cool colors, such as jewel tones in the blue, purple, and green color family will look especially flattering on you. Your best foundation match will also have a bluish or pink tint to it.
What It Means to Have a Neutral Undertone
A neutral undertone is neither warm nor cool — it’s right in the middle. This means that you have options in terms of colors. Every shade, no matter if it’s warm or cool, will complement your skin tone. With foundations, specifically, you’ll be able to choose either undertone family or go for the neutral category, which many beauty brands have started adding to their lineups in recent years.
Take the Skin Undertone Quiz
See if your undertones are warm, cool, or neutral, and get helpful tips on making your makeup color selections a breeze ahead. Note: it’s best to do the following test in natural light (so move toward a window or go outside) with a freshly washed face. Also, pull your hair back and keep your shoulders bare so you get a true sense of your natural coloring.
Look at the inside of your wrist. What color do your veins predominately appear?
Picture yourself (or better yet, actually do it) in a yellow or orange shirt. How do you look?
What metal jewelry do you prefer on your skin?
Place a piece of white paper next to your bare face. How does your complexion look?
What happens to your skin when you are out in the sun without sunscreen?
What color flecks are in your eyes?
If you fall into this category — like Billie Eilish, Anne Hathaway, and Lupita Nyong’o — try sticking to jewel-toned makeup and clothing, including blue, purple, blue-green, green, magenta, and bluish-red shades. For foundation, you’ll probably look best in formulations with a bluish or pink undertone. And be sure to reach for the black, dark blue, or purple mascara when it comes to eye makeup: it’s sure to make your eyes pop.
Click over here to discover the makeup to buy and wear for cool undertones.
If you fall into this category — as celebrities like Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce do — try sticking to earthier colors of makeup and clothing, such as yellow, orange, brown, orangey-reds, and yellow-green shades. For foundation, you’ll probably look best in formulations with a yellow or golden undertone. And be sure to reach for the brick-red lipstick (as opposed to the bright blue-red) when it comes to a night out on the town: it’s sure to make your complexion pop.
Click over here to discover the makeup to buy and wear for warm undertones.
Lucky you! Like Zendaya and Jennifer Aniston, you have neutral undertones, which means you can wear any shade that appeals to you. It’s up to you if you prefer cooler makeup tones or warmer shades, so experiment with both to see what you like best, or switch it up depending on the jewelry or clothing you’re wearing. Our best tip? Stay away from foundations that are geared for yellow skin tones — they’ll make you look sallow. Experiment with rose gold shades since they have a little bit of warm and cool mixed in them.
Click over here to discover the makeup to buy and wear for neutral undertones.
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