Autumn, winter, summer, spring. Undertone, skintone, eye color, hair color, zodiac sign.
Okay, not that last one. But the rest you've probably heard of as suggested tools to choose your perfect wardrobe and makeup colors. Confusing, right? I myself have been told by color "experts" that I am a winter, autumn, summer. I've also tried to figure it out myself via various online quizzes and always get caught up on one question: hair color. Do I choose the color I had as a little girl (towheaded), the color I really am now (ash brown) or the color my hairdresser has given me (golden blonde with coppery highlights)? As someone who has made her living choosing beautiful color schemes for rooms, I can tell you it is a lot easier to select colors for an entire home than for yourself.
According to color expert Jill Kirsh, I'm not alone. Which is why her Jill Kirsh Color system focuses on one thing only: the current color of your hair.
It's a system Jill developed from years of working in Hollywood with celebrity clients, and as an actress herself, and now offers in personal consultations and online. She's also appeared on numerous TV talk shows and in magazines, including Redbook, where she debunked the notion that redheads can't wear red. Because with this system, anyone can wear any color -- it's all about finding the right hue. And once you do, those perfect hues "make you look vibrant -- and younger and thinner, too," promises Jill.
The difference is truly dramatic -- just check out the before and after photos at right.
(What's hue? Think of a color wheel, and how red can range from deep burgundy to true red to cherry red.)
Want to give it a try? Head over to the choose your color page of the Jill Kirsh Color website, look at the four hair color groupings and listen to the accompanying audio of Jill describing each group of women with representative hair colors -- who by the way all initially appear in the videos without makeup. The categories are:
Once you pick the group closest to your current hair color, delve into Jill's suggestions for the most flattering colors to put on your face and body. On the site you can buy makeup and scarves in each palette, plus a fabric swatchbook you can use to shop at a store or select from your own closet.
A few months ago Jill was kind enough to send me a Complete Package of makeup palette and swatchbook, plus silk scarf, to experiment with and review.
What do I think of the system? I had three initial hesitations:
- Figuring out where my golden blonde/coppery hair fit in the categories
- I'm not really a fan of makeup kits
- There was no black in my particular fabric swatchbook. (Hit panic button NOW.)
The first issue was solved by a quick consult with Jill, who said my golden/coppery highlights put me into the Golden Brown/Redhead category (an update that will be reflected on the website soon with additional hair swatches and revised name).
On the other two points, well, Jill unexpectedly won me over. Read more in upcoming posts to find out what I thought of Jill's makeup, how she staved off my lack-of-black-panic-attack, and how ultimately the Jill Kirsh Color system inspired a complete makeup refresh and revitalized joy in the colors of my wardrobe.
Did you find your color category? Tell us what you think! And if you have any questions, please post it in the comments and we'll include them in an upcoming Q&A with Jill.
Jill Kirsh Color offers personal consultations, color parties and an extensive website with tips and online shopping.
Thank you to Stacey of SMStyles for introducing me to Jill. Top photo by Doreen Creede. All other images courtesy Jill Kirsh Color.
This post is part of our new Style Maniac series The Hello Gorgeous Project.
"Use the good china for breakfast."