A Complete Guide to Choosing the Right Hair Colour for Your Skin Tone

Choosing the right hair color is an art, intricately linked to individualism and self-expression. Beyond just aesthetics, the perfect shade can uplift your confidence and complement your overall appearance. One key element often overlooked when selecting a hair colour is the skin tone. This guide will educate you on harmonizing your hair colour with your skin tone to achieve that impeccable look.

Hair Health Comes First!

When thinking about new hair colour, it’s super important to remember what you’ve done to your hair in the past. If you’ve coloured your hair a bunch of times before, you might be feeling a bit tired. In that case, maybe it’s time to go back to basics and choose a colour close to what you were born with. Or, give your hair a nice treat with some deep conditioning to help it recover.

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But hey, if you’ve never coloured your hair – that’s great! You’ve got a lot of options. However, a word to the wise: even though you’ve got what’s called “virgin hair,” you still need to think about how things like bleaching might affect it. So, always consider the health of your hair, no matter how tempting that bold new colour might be!

Understanding Skin Undertones

After taking your hair health and history into consideration, the next step is understanding skin undertones. While the surface shade of our skin can switch up due to factors like tanning or a spontaneous blush, the undertone is that steadfast friend that doesn’t change. Generally, there are three main undertones to consider: cool, with its hints of pink, blue, or purple; warm, characterized by peachy, golden, or yellow shades; and neutral, which is like the perfect blend of cool and warm. A nifty trick to figure out where you stand on the undertone spectrum is the vein test. A glance at your wrist veins can be revealing: blue or purple veins point towards a cool undertone, green suggests warmth, and if you’re scratching your head unable to decide, you’re probably neutral.

Now, let’s chat about hair colours for different skin tones. For those fair-skinned beauties with cool undertones, shades like platinum, ice, silver, champagne, and ash blonde can be incredibly flattering. Even cool ash brown and soft mocha can be a hit. And if you’re feeling a tad adventurous, pastel blues and lavenders can be absolutely dazzling. However, diving too deep into intense shades might just make the skin seem paler than it is. On the other hand, if you have fair skin but with warm undertones, golden blondes, strawberry blondes, honey, and copper could be your best bet. Soft ginger or a light golden brown also makes the cut. Just a heads up, veering towards extremely dark colours might cast an overpowering contrast.

For medium-skinned individuals with cool undertones, neutral browns, wheat-toned blondes, and walnut shades are where it’s at. Throwing in some highlights in cooler tones can elevate the whole look. But a note of caution: hues like copper and gold might not be the most harmonious with the skin’s natural vibe. Those with medium skin and warm undertones might gravitate towards honey and golden blondes, caramel, and toffee. Auburn, chestnut, and warm chocolate browns are also delightful picks. However, it’s best to sidestep the ashy shades to avoid a washed-out appearance.

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Diving deeper, dark-skinned individuals with cool undertones can revel in shades like dark mocha, deep plum, and classic jet black. Introducing cool-toned highlights can add layers of dimension and drama. But golden and bronze tones? Maybe not the best match as they could render an ashy look to the skin. Lastly, for those radiant dark-skinned folks with warm undertones, it’s all about rich browns like mahogany, warm black, or even highlights in a yummy caramel. To add a touch of luminosity, golden and copper shades can work wonders. Just a tip, maybe give ashy browns and blondes a miss; they might come off a tad dull.

Factors that will help you make a decision

Selecting the right hair colour isn’t solely about matching your skin tone; there’s a bigger picture to consider.

Your personal style plays a pivotal role. Those who appreciate timeless fashion might gravitate towards classic colours like browns or blondes. However, if you’re always in the know about the latest trends, shades like ‘mushroom brown’ or ‘living coral’ could catch your eye. For bold and edgy, unconventional colours, from pastels to electric blues, can be a statement.

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Maintenance is another critical aspect. If you’re aiming for a low-maintenance look, techniques like balayage or ombre might be your best friend, giving a natural gradient that demands fewer touch-ups. On the other hand, vibrant shades like platinum blonde may require more frequent salon visits.

Don’t forget the influence of seasonal changes: winter often calls for deeper shades, while summer beckons for lighter, sun-kissed tones. Amidst all this, stay attuned to current trends, but prioritize what aligns with your personal style and the effort you’re ready to commit. At the end of the day, your hair colour should be a genuine reflection of you, telling your unique story with every strand.

Some Useful Tips

Always Consult a Professional: While it’s tempting to DIY, a professional hairstylist has the expertise to select the perfect shade for your skin tone.

Do a Strand Test: Before colouring your entire hair, try the shade on a small section to ensure it complements your skin tone.


While this guide offers an educational foundation for choosing hair colours based on skin tones, remember that the ultimate decision lies with you. Personal preference, current trends, or even mood can influence your choice. The goal is to find a colour that makes you feel radiant, confident, and true to yourself. Your hair colour should be a reflection of your personality, complemented by the natural palette of your skin. Embrace change, but always prioritize your comfort and satisfaction.

Remember, beauty isn’t just about following rules, but creating a look that celebrates your individuality!

Filed under: Makeup & Hair, Tips and Myths

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