“Can you paint with all the colours of the wind?” Pocahontas’ question–to which I emphatically nodded “yes” decades ago–recently gave me pause. Wait, the wind has colours? I know, feel free to take your time with it…

Colour is everywhere and yet we know so little about it. Colour Psychology–an emerging study about how colours affect our brain, moods, feelings, and behaviours–says that how we feel about colours is deeply personal. It shows individual preference, creates certain moods, and can affect an individual’s performance. Stepping out in the right colours can energise and motivate you. Knowing you are in the right colours makes you feel attractive, assertive, and confident. To get your 2019 off to a rousing start, let’s colour your life accurately.

Finding Your Colour Code

First off, how do you know what’s the right colour for you? For so many things, the first step–figuring out your skin’s undertone–may be the hardest. Actually, if you consult a colour specialist and have a colour analysis done, it’s a wrap. You can call it a day and head directly to the nearest mall. On the other hand, if you’re on a budget for the New Year, we’ve got the scoop here.

Your complexion or skin colour, which sun exposure or illness can change, is not the same as your skin’s undertone, which is defined by genetics and won’t change. Your skin’s undertone–the colour visible under your skin–can be neutral, cool, or warm. There are a few relatively simple online tests you can do to determine your skin’s undertone. Alternatively, simply look at the veins on your inner wrist in natural light. If your veins look greenish, you have a “warm” undertone; if they look bluish-purple, you are a “cool” tone; if your veins look bluish-green, you are considered “neutral.” And there you have it. You’ve cracked the skin undertone code.

Knowing your tone helps you to choose colours that will flatter you. While black and white complement all skin undertones equally, warm (or earth tone) colours go well with warm skin undertones; cool colours (or jewel tones) look great on people with cool skin undertones. People with a neutral undertone look good with either colour scheme.

Since this is the year to colour your life, you may decide to spruce up your look, a little top-end treatment might be in order to match your new wardrobe. The perfect makeup or hair colour will highlight your best facial features, make you look younger, and complement your skin tone. Yep, there it is again, skin tone. Your skin and natural hair colour share the same underlying tones. It’s important to know your skin’s undertone when choosing the right colours for hair colour. If you have warm undertones and dark hair, then mahogany, chestnut, or caramel highlights will look good on you. If you are a “warm,” with light hair, you will glow with golden or honey blonde, copper, or light caramel colours. Dark-haired beauties with cool undertones are radiant with hair colours like espresso, cocoa, or jet black; and light-haired cool combinations shine with platinum, icy blonde, Bordeaux, or plum shades. Those natural “neutrals” can get away with almost any hair colour.

The same principles apply to your makeup, accessories, and jewellery selection, too. Warms should stick to a more earthy palette, cools can go bold with blues, greens, and purples, while neutrals can go either way.

Colour Me Mango Mojito

With your hair “on fleek” and your wardrobe popping, you’re ready to strut confidently through this upcoming year. Let’s top off your look with a few fashion tips to help you “slay” in 2019.

Mango Mojito

The Pantone Fashion Color Trend Report from The Pantone Color Institute highlights the top colours fashion designers will feature in their collections at New York Fashion Week for the upcoming season. According to the report, the 2019 Spring Collection will be “dominated by lively hues,” with a palette of bright reds and oranges but also mellow and neutral tones. On the daring side of the spectrum, Fiesta, Jester Red, Turmeric, Living Coral, and Pink Peacock are commanding attention, whereas Pepper Stem, Aspen Gold, Toffee, Sweet Lilac, and Mango Mojito are appealing to those who prefer the softer side.

A range of neutral colours, including Soybean, Eclipse, Sweet Corn, and Brown Granite, will be the staple for everyday fashions. Executive director, Leatrice Eiseman says that the list of colours is a reflection of the company’s mindset to inspire “confidence and spirit” through empowering hues.

Aspen Gold

Warm undertones can rock out in this year’s bright sunset arrays of reds and oranges, while cool undertones can rock steady in trendsetting subtler hues. For those lucky neutrals, you can continue to rock on in whatever inspires you.  

Pocahontas asked the question: “Can you paint with all the colours of the wind?” to open our eyes to the full spectrum of beauty nature has to offer. By embracing the right colours that enhance your natural beauty, you will paint many lives with the colours of the wind in 2019, and… colour your own.