Color Theory, How to's, Make-up

Choosing the right shade of red

Red is our neutral final

RED, red, red.  The color of energy and excitement!  Everyone has a shade they can wear.  Don it in the darker months because it is as warming to the soul as it is to the body.

Wear red to lift your spirits, to celebrate holidays and to single you out like those red berries against a winter landscape.  It is the longest seen wave length on the electromagnetic scale so it truly touches us by stimulating our feel-good hormones.  When our energy is low sometimes just looking at red is better than a strong cup of coffee.

Everybody has a shade of red that they can wear.  What may look brown on one person can be a vivid red on someone else in the same way that a purpley-wine can be just the right shade of “red” on another complexion.  Color changes according to what it is contrasted against.

According to my Triadic Color Theory System© our personal coloring falls into color categories of red, yellow or blue.  Just like the color wheel, each hue category has it’s own warmer or cooler sides because we all have dibs and dabs of genetic color marking that mix together to form our own unique tones.

See the simplified charts below to see if you can find your own coloring and determine the shade of red that would be best worn against your complexion.  The face of American is changing, however, so this diversity brings out many variations even on what I have shown.  And if you add to the fact that many of us color our hair, the possibilities are endless.  See information at the end of this post for a link to my color analysis service.


true reds chart finalTomato red, true red and coral red
Hair colors:
  • golden blond, warm gray, strawberry blond, fiery red, golden brown and warm black.
Skin colors:
  • yellow + beige = warm ivory skin tones
  • yellow + pink flush = apricot or peach skin tones
  • yellow + brown = golden tan skin tones

RED PREDOMINANCEred undertones finalrusset reds chart

Burnt orange-red, russet red, warm burgundy red

Hair colors:

  • pale reddish-ash brown, fiery gray, russet-brown, auburn, mahogany, chestnut black

Skin colors:

  • Red + yellow = warm peach skin tones
  • red + warm red = warm russet skin tones
  • red + warm brown = warm copper

BLUE PREDOMINANCEblue final #2blue reds chart

Cherry red, rosy red, plum red

Hair colors:

  • platinum blond, ash blond, silver-gray, medium cool brown, dark brown, blue-black

Skin colors:

  • blue + beige = cool bisque skin tones
  • blue + pink flush = cool rose skin tones
  • blue + brown = cool beige or brown skin tones
  • blue + yellow = olive skin tones

Read about my personal color analysis service.

Thank you to the many hair stylists and photographers for the use of the photos above:,,, Ronnie Dankelman to name a few whose information I could find.

Art work shown above by me.  Painted, stitched and stretched cotton.  All rights reserved.