Winter Colour Palette – 4 Season Color Analysis


In the original Color Me Beautiful 4 season color analysis system, the winter colour palette is cool and deep. This groups people whose skin has a blue-ish or pinkish cool undertone, and hair that is ashy without golden or red highlights. The winter palette colors are high contrast, dark and cool.

The Winter colour palette would suit people who fall into Deep Winter, Cool Winter and Bright Winter in the 12 Season Color Analysis system. If you are looking for a more specific palette and your colouring is more neutral than Cool Winter, check Dark or Bright Winter instead. That said, the winter palette colors are a good place to start for anybody falling in this season.

Winter Color Palette Characteristics

Are you a classic Winter? Check to see how many of the following characteristics match your natural coloring.

Skin: Winter skintone is cool or even olive undertones. You may have very light skin and a high contrast level with your hair and eyes, or an overall dark colouring.

Hair: Either very light hair blonde with no warm undertones (platinum, icy blondes) or dark brown to black hair. Ashy mid-brown brunettes can also fall into this category. The important bit is that there are no golden or copper undertones to the hair, though sometimes there are cool red undertones.

It is usually darker than summer, but not always. It can be lighter or darker depending on the person. Winter hair tends to be ash blonde or ash brown.

Eyes: Cool steel blue, clear blue, cool green or dark brown to black eyes. High contrast between the white of the eyes and the iris, the eyes are bright colors and jewel-like, not hazy. Brown or hazelnut. Eyebrows tend to be thicker and darker than summer.

You will suit colors that are sharp, clear and high contrast. Winters can also wear black and pure white comfortably. If you feel that black overpowers you, but your overall coloring is cool, then you may fit better into Summer.

Winter Colors Palette

Winter Color Palette

The colors in the Winter palette are high contrast, cool, and either dark colors or bright. Winters suit light colors, but they need to be icy tones and not pastels. They must not be greyed out or diluted. Think of the colors of the snow, they are light but they are by no means pastel.

Some of the worst colors for Winters in general are soft colors, such as beige or cream. If you belong in the Winter colors palette, you will find that gold and orange make you look sick and unhealthy. However, other metals like silver and platinum look great on you.

The important bit here is contrast. Winters look great in high contrast looks, using two or three colors of their palette at most. Geometric designs and patters also fit well with the Winter aesthetic. It can bring a lot of interest to an otherwise monochromatic outfit.

Finding the right light colors in the winter color palette is important to build the right contrast into your outfit. As you can see, the light colors in the Winter color palette don’t need to be pastel to be light. They are icy and cool. Here we can see the elusive Winter yellow, a pale yellow that in no way could be confused with gold.

Not all colors in the 4 seasons winter color palette will be the best everybody who belongs to the season, but they will at least look good. As a rule of thumb:

  • If your overall level of contrast is very high (bright eyes, dark hair, and light skin color) try to imitate that on your outfits and wear striking combinations of the lighter and darker shades colors on your palette.
  • If your overall level of contrast is medium, but your skin is really cool (think Snow White pale skin or people of color with blue-black undertones) then choose the cooler colors in the palette and avoid anything warm colors.
  • If your overall level of contrast is medium but your coloring is rather dark, combine the darker colors of your winter palette and use light colors only as accents and not the base of the outfit.

The original Color Me Beautiful 4 season color analysis theory is based in four color types:

  • Spring: Warm and Light
  • Summer: Cool and Light
  • Autumn: Warm and Dark
  • Winter: Cool and Dark

The sister season to the Winter colour palette is summer, and a medium colored Winter may be able to steal some of the darker colors of the Summer colour palette, but they just won’t look as good. It is however sometimes a challenge to find Winter’s yellows or greys in stores and in that case a summer’s light lemon yellow may be a good alternative.

Winter Makeup

In general, Bright winter makeup is striking, clear, and cool. This doesn’t mean it needs to be always intense colors, though in general Winters benefit from wearing makeup and can wear much more dramatic makeup than other seasons.

Winter skin tone is cool, so any foundation that has yellow on it will be very noticeable and not in a “my skin but better” way. The same goes for orange and coral toned blushes. Pink and red will look much better, alongside plum. The important thing is for makeup to have a blue base, instead of a yellow or gold base. Silver makeup will also look great on this season, and depending on the color of your eyes black and dark charcoal eyeliner.

The best lipstick colors for Winters are:

The best natural looking eyeshadows for Winters are

Avoid rush and orange tones and warm purples as they may make your eyes look irritated.
The Winter colour palette is cool, deep and clear. If you are not sure black and white look great on you, check the Summer palette if you are cool. In the 12 season system, Winter is further divided into three more palettes which suit those who don’t fall neatly into the Winter category.

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