Optimize Your Existing Wardrobe

Optimize your existing wardrobeIf you’ve been to Color Me Pretty before, you’ve probably figured out what Season Type you are. If you haven’t – now is the time to do so.

Once you know which colors complement your complexion, you can easily optimize your existing wardrobe. You’ll be making the best out of what you already own with your newfound color knowledge.

In these four steps I’ll show you how to revitalize your wardrobe and start making outfit choices that flatter your color type.

1. Take Stock Of What You Have

Pull things out that are hiding in the back of your closet, lay out everything where you can see it. You may rediscover pieces you LOVE or laugh at things you can’t believe once wore. Either way, you probably have a lot more clothes than you thought.

2. Pick Out Clothes With These Two Simple Rules

RULE #1: Clothes worn close to your face (i.e. tops, scarfs, sweaters, jackets, dresses, jewelry) must fit within your seasonal color palette.

Color analysis is all about finding what shades work best with your skin tone, hair shade, and eye color (AKA everything on your face). So it’s important for pieces that come in contact with your face to match your season type.

RULE #2: If it’s not near your face – anything goes! When it comes to pants, skirts, shoes and anything else you may wear on the bottom of your body, any color will work. These articles of clothing are too far from your face to have any impact on your complexion. Color wise, they just need to be in harmony with the rest of your outfit.

3. Get Rid Of The Rest

This step is hard for some. Getting rid of clothes can be grueling – you probably spent a lot of time picking them out! You may have some great pieces that are just totally not right for you. This is a fantastic opportunity to give away clothes to friends who are a different Season Type than you. Or you could donate your clothing to a local shelter, and make someone in need very happy.

Just remember that in the long run, it’s for the best. You likely won’t even remember clothes you remove from your closet once they’re gone. And it will feel so good to get some clutter out of your space. Plus, after you get rid of stuff that doesn’t work for you, you’ll have a better sense of what your wardrobe is lacking.

4. Create Some Outfits

If you have time, pick out a few outfits that you absolutely love. This will set you up for the rest of week, and help get you excited about the options in your closet.

The best part of this whole process will be getting dressed the next morning. Since your wardrobe is now optimized to uniquely flatter you, picking out an outfit every day will be a breeze. You’ve eliminated any chance of grabbing a shirt or dress that looks wrong on you. Only beautiful options left!

If you have yet to figure out what your ideal color palette is, I am here to help. Check out my Personal Color Advice so you can get started on organizing a wardrobe to perfectly suit you.

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Psychological Effects of Color

Do you have a favorite color? Have you ever wondered if there is a specific reason why we are drawn to certain colors over others? Why rooms painted different colors can make us feel different things? Why we feel like certain colors reflect our personalities?

There’s an answer to all of these questions. Human beings, whether they realize it or not, use color as a communication system. We receive unique signals and messages from each color. We even feel differently about hues of a single color.

Nature sends us signals using color: Like how we know when fruits and vegetables are safe to eat by looking at their shade. Keep in mind, there’s no such thing as a “good” or “bad” color. No perceptions are absolute, it’s all relative.

A few examples of how we perceive color

RED: Red is eye-catching. We are drawn to it. This is useful in every day life – think stop signs and traffic lights. But also, in fashion. Wear a red dress to a party and all eyes will be on you. It’s a strong color, it can activate our “fight or flight” response because it is also related to aggression, defiance, and strain.

When to wear red? On a first date.

BLUE: When we see blue, it affects our mind more than any other color can. It is the color of intellect. It soothes and calms us. It helps with concentration. On the other hand, blue is sometimes seen as cold and not friendly.

When should you wear blue? When you need to ace an important exam.

YELLOW: We receive emotional signals from yellow and get the strongest psychological response from it. It has the ability to put us in a better mood, lift our spirits, and make us feel good about ourselves. Too much yellow or certain tones can take us in the opposite direction though – it can give us feelings of fear and anxiety.

When should you wear yellow? When you’re feeling down, and need to be cheered up!

GREEN: It is at the center of the color spectrum and represents balance. Humans see green as healthy – think of how much green is all around us in nature. When a plant is a rich green, we know it is at peak health and we are drawn to it. It is reassuring. The only downsides to green are that it can be seen as boring or stagnant.

When should you wear green? Nurses and doctors often wear green scrubs to put their patients at ease.

Which colors appeal to you? You are drawn to certain colors over others because they relate to your own personality. You will feel your best when you’re surrounded by colors that reflect who you are.

When it comes to colors, we crave harmony and balance, and take in every color that is presented to us, and instinctively restore balance whenever we feel it is lacking. To see an example of this: focus on ONE color for thirty seconds, then close your eyes. You will see the afterimage of the opposite complementary color. We are naturally restoring color balance. You will feel notably worse when the colors around you clash and don’t match. It is mentally draining because we crave this harmony in color.

Understanding color psychology can help us in many ways. We can influence our moods and slowly but surely change our lives for the better by picking out colors that make us feel amazing. Pay close attention to the colors that you are naturally drawn to. Listen to your instincts, and see how color psychology affects you!

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Will My Colors Change Over Time?

Your color season will never changeEach of us has her/his own unique color tone. Like fingerprints, they’re completely individual to us. Many people are under the impression that our skin’s pigmentation changes over time, to the extent that a person would need to redo their seasonal color analysis. But this isn’t the case. Once you are sure of what season you fit into, you will never have to ask for color advice again. Your season will never change!

What does happen to us all is a softening of our personal color tone that comes naturally with age. Grey hair and thinner skin bring a beautiful softness to one’s look. And sometimes to complement this process, softer versions of colors can be adopted into the wardrobe: Cooler, less intense colors.

Keep in mind that sometimes what is changing most is how one feels about certain colors that they once felt confident wearing. As women age, they tend to intuitively stay away from the brighter, attention-grabbing colors in their seasonal palette as a result of social conditioning.

softer colors when we get older

Whatever the reason is, it’s okay to feel this way. Personal style and the colors you choose to wear should make you feel great about yourself – not self conscious in any way. And there are still ways to incorporate bold colors into a more subdued wardrobe. If you’re more comfortable in neutral colors, start by wearing those – brown, grey, beige, white, navy, etc. Then, accent your outfit with accessories and jewelry in bold, fun hues from your seasonal palette.

I always advice to stay as close as possible to the natural coloring you were born with because this is the way you look your best. There are a few scenarios when you may want to adjust your colors because of some dramatic changes:

  • adjust your colors after tanYou drastically change your hair color
  • You try out colored contacts
  • You get a killer tan
  • After a major life change; e.g. menopause or illness

If your color season has never been assessed, or you want to be 100% sure that you’re using the right palette, ask for my own personal color advice. I’ll work with you to discover what colors will make you look your absolute best.

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Colors That Look Great on Everyone!

Universal Colors are shades that work on everyone. It’s important to know your season type which enables you to pick those colors that flatter your skin perfectly. But being aware of universal colors is fantastic, too.

There are a few key scenarios where universal colors are wildly helpful

1.    You’re in a rush! You don’t have time to put a lot of thought into your outfit – grab a dress in a universal color. It’s guaranteed to make you look good, so you can be out the door and feeling 100% confident in minutes.

2.    You’re buying a gift for a friend. You can’t figure out her season type, and don’t want to pick something that won’t complement her look – a blouse or scarf in a universal color is your answer.

3.    You need a uniform for a staff of all different kinds of people. Pick a color that will work on everyone. (This is why cops wear navy blue, and medical professionals often wear scrubs in teal.)

4.    Bridesmaids dresses. Four or five completely different women. So what color do you choose? By now, I bet you can guess… Universal Colors!

So, you’re probably wondering – what are these magical colors?! Well, here they are. You’ll find that each color strikes a nice balance between warm and cool. They aren’t overwhelming – nothing too loud, light, dark or bright. Balanced just right. They can be paired with your specific seasonal colors, or worn on their own.
Universal color stone

Stone

A nice, calming neutral color.
Often stone needs some bright accents to liven it up but looks beautiful by itself, too.
Universal color teal

Teal

It’s an unexpected pick for this list, because teal seems so bold.
But because it is the exact opposite of pink on the color spectrum, it brings out a nice flush in the cheeks.
It’s also got a great versatility – much more than other shades of blue.
Universal color navy

Navy

There’s a reason navy is used so often for uniforms – it’s incredibly flattering on everyone.
And navy can be paired with so many colors, just think of all the colors that work with your navy blue jeans.

Universal color eggplant

Eggplant

It’s a perfect shade of purple because it goes with so much, and works in every season.
Its balance of red and blue complements everyone’s complexion quite nicely.

Universal color mellow pink

Mellow Pink

It’s soft, subtle, and beautiful on everyone. The subtlety brings out a nice flush on the face and a glowing quality to those who wear it. A touch of gray gives this soft, light pink an easygoing elegance.

Universal color true redTrue Red

While you can fine tune the shade of red to perfectly fit your season type, true red is universally flattering. Don’t go too far towards an orange-red, or a blue-red. Stay right in between for the best results. It’s eye-catching, powerful, and totally attractive. Be bold and go for it!

“Maybe only one of these colors stands out to you, or maybe they all do! But incorporate any of them into your wardrobe, and you’re pretty much guaranteed to look lovely. Take on a chance on the true red, or teal, or one of the other colors that you may be wary of; then watch as the compliments come flying your way.

“Check back in to Color Me Pretty soon, we’ve got a lot of fun and useful tips coming up.”

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