Tips & Tricks

How To Determine Your Skin Tone: Warm vs Cool

September 24, 2006

When buying a foundation, the first thing you want to do is figure out whether your skintone is on the warm or cool side. Why? Because if you have warm undertones, a ccool-based foundation will look pasty and sickly on you and if you are on the cool side, a warm foundation can make you look sallow. So how can you tell if you are warm or cool? Check out the following guidelines – it is a lot easier than you think!

warm skintone vs cool skintone

Warm Skintone
• You look better in gold jewelry
• You have yellow undertones
• Your veins have a greenish tint
• You tend to look better in warm colors

Cool Skintone
• ou look better in silver jewelry
• You have pink undertones
• Your veins have a bluish tint
• You tend to look better in cool colors

If you do not fall into either category, you can be Neutral, which is a combination of both. Some people can also be a cool and a warm during different times of the year. The color of our skin can change according to the seasons, lighting and even your own physical well-being, which is why it is always a good thing to have foundations of different shades handy.

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  • Reply Sanura September 24, 2006 at 11:46 pm

    This is the first time I’ve heard of combination/neutral undertones. Thank you so much for mentioning it here.

    Everytime I read about undertones and how to find them, I get confused. They tell me to look at my veins and when I do I’m like, “Are they blue-ish? They look a little green, but they also look a little blue…”

    • Reply Paige October 9, 2017 at 8:56 am

      That’s my situation. My veins are definitely both blue and green. I’m a natural blond with blue eyes, but three years ago I went red. So do I go by my natural color or my fake color? This is the first test I’ve seen where they don’t address hair color, so maybe it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter, cool, warm or neutral, I feel I can always see a line. My skin is so fair, and my neck paler than my face. Buying foundation is a nightmare for me, and having it done by the “pros” in the department stores gets me nowhere. I think I look fine until I walk outside into natural light and look in my rear view mirror in the car. Horror. lol

      • Reply Paige October 9, 2017 at 9:01 am

        I want to add that I seem to have the best luck if I combine two shades in the palm of my hand. So, in this case I am currently using a warm and a cool and it seems to work better than the neutral in the same shade.

  • Reply Deena Harris April 28, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    Sanura, I was in the same boat as you! so confused!! I guess us neutral girls can wear anything!

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