Color Theory, How to's, Make-up

Invisible make-up; revisiting color theory

Make-up at it’s best should not show. Unless we choose to apply cosmetic color as an artistic statement we want it to feel texturally light with invisible color that blends in.  Right?  A mistake is made, however, in thinking that to achieve this make-up needs to be very sheer or rubbed in. In fact invisibility is only achieved if the color is directly related to the hues present in our skin. Correct imperfections with total coverage or simply highlight what is there, it all becomes invisible when the hues are correct.

Like the clothing fashion that they are designed to accessorize with, cosmetic trends go in and out of style and so does our concept of beauty. Sculpted & illuminated cheek bones, plumped & highlighted lips, defined & darkened brows are the current trends—a throw-back to the “glamorous” 1980’s. But whether we choose to embrace these recurring changes or simply choose our own timeless Personal Style*, the concept of invisibility surpasses all trends and is the difference between authentic beauty or painted surrealism. 

Make-up becomes invisible when the hues are correct.



As I wrote in my last blog post, solid color theory points to the fact that humans, as part of nature’s spectrum, are toned predominately with either a red, yellow or blue cast. The face is shaped with applied color most naturally when the hue of the cosmetic shares the same cast as the skin. This sounds obvious but it can be challenging. Cosmetics are manufactured, as I said above, to coordinate with clothing color trends. In any given season, there will be a predominance of one or two casts based on fashion leaving a group of people out. Each cosmetic company will specialize in their interpretation of color usually focusing on one palette or another.  The true make-up artist driven colors will fare best for most people as a full range of color is offered in all palettes.

From my own collection of colors here are some photos to help you understand “neutral color” as I define it.  Neutrality is what occurs naturally in you; your hair, your skin, your eyes and what color your cheeks become when they flush.

The RED neutral palette


The YELLOW neutral palette
The BLUE neutral palette
RED neutral eye color. What looks bright all alone tones down on the correct skin color.
YELLOW neutral eye color. The paper the color it is applied to is not yellow enough so the color remains looking bright.
BLUE neutral eye colors.

If you are curious about your own coloring click through to see all the services I offer.

*Personal style always dictates the way that color is applied to the face.  Invisibility can still make a statement tho, like Nora with her peacock feathered hair piece.  Make-up was artfully applied in shades of purple, mauve and green to coordinate while still working within her natural range of color.



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