Style

The best hair colors for your skin tone

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Blond, brunette, redhead...the best hair color for you complements your skin tone and makes your complexion and tresses look vibrant and healthy.

Find your tone.

Skin tones are basically warm or cool. Warm skin tones have golden or yellow undertones, while cool skin tones have pink or blue. If you're not sure, look at the veins in your arm while in natural light: If they look green, your skin tone is warm. If they look blue, your skin tone is cool.

Warm it up.

Warm complexions look most natural with warm hair colors in complementary tones. Cool, ashy colors on warm skin drains the color from your face and leaves you with a boring hair color that does nothing to enhance the golden tones in your skin. You can heat it up with copper blondes, lively reds and rich browns with auburn undertones. The most beautiful natural colors have both highlights and lowlights, so add some pizzazz to your color choice and go a little lighter on wisps that frame your face.

You're the coolest.

Cool hair color is just that: cool and complementary to cool skin tones. It immediately brightens the face and puts the focus on your features. You can wear the ashy tones or be an icy-blonde vision. Most reds are too strong for you, but you make a bombshell brunette and look exotic in the darker shades (even jet black). Stay away from colors with a strong red element like mahogany and auburns with a lot of gold in them. Lucky women with cool skin tones can go palest ash blonde to very dark, and can add in those always-flattering highlights near the face.

Still not sure? Try on some wigs or go to a website that lets you try on hair color virtually before you make a big commitment at the salon. Have fun playing dress-up and finding your perfect shade!


Vicki Clinebell majored in journalism at the University of Colorado, and headed an advertising agency before beginning a long career in broadcasting, spanning production and copywriting to sales and management for an ABC affiliate station. Deciding to switch gears and write fulfilled a lifelong ambition. She started as a blogger for a diverse group of businesses, and now writes for a number of websites for companies in her hometown in the Rocky Mountains, and provides advertising copy and media buying for national and regional clients. She finds the research as interesting as the writing, learning about subjects as diverse as construction scaffolding, child safety seats, and newest trends in beauty and fashion. As a long-time devotee of SheKnows, she’s thrilled to see her own work on the pages.