How to wear colour

Springtime is a wonderful time to splash out in colour, so brighten up your wardrobe with these tips from Tracy Gold.

Even though it's the perfect season to be bold style-wise, many women stick to the safety of black with the hope that  it makes them look slimmer.  But just wearing black, black and more black can drain your complexion and make you look older than you are. 

Good use of colour can make you look slimmer, brighten your complexion and make you feel fabulous.

To make introducing colour into your wardrobe seem less daunting, I share a few of my top tips to selecting colour that suits you best.

There are no absolute rules:

I don’t believe there are absolute rules when it comes to colour.  You can wear almost any colour, it’s just how you wear it and the quantity you wear it in. 

No doubt, there will be colours that work best for you and are easy to wear, and then there are those that will make you look drained. It’s about determining which is which.

Be prepared to try an array of colour 

I often suggest new colours that my clients thought they would never wear; only to find they look amazing in the selected colour.  You need to step out of your comfort zone and try various colours in order to find ‘your match’. 

How to test if a colour works for you:

1.    Drape the colour you want to test over one of your shoulders, close to your face as you would wear a blouse.
2.    Place a colour you know works for you on the other shoulder in the same way and compare.
3.    How does each colour affect the tone of your cheeks and under eye?  If your under eye looks darker, your complexion looks paler than usual or your complexion looks very yellow, you know it is not a colour that works for you.  If the colour brings out your natural colouring and lifts your face, you know it’s a winner.

Selecting your best neutrals

Women often think of black when I mention neutrals, but neutrals can range from chocolate brown, mocha, taupe, olive green, white, silver grey etc. When selecting your best neutrals, make sure they mix well with your complimentary colours.

Let me explain:

·    If your best complimentary colours are burnt orange, olive green and coral, these colours will mix well with chocolate brown and taupe neutrals.
·    If your best complimentary colours are light pink, deep red and purple, these colours will mix well with silver grey and white neutrals.

Colour tips for African and Indian complexions:

If you are African:

·    African ladies are fortunate to be able to wear colours that other complexions could never pull off.  So have fun with it ladies!
·    Think bright and light colours i.e. bright red, orange, yellow, blue, green and soft colours like white, pink, pale blue, pale yellow.
·    Avoid wearing too much black as it can make you look invisible.  Rather combine black with colour to enhance your beautiful dark skin.
·    Beware of neutrals like grey, beige, insipid browns and creams.
·    If you wear a neutral that is very close to your skin colour, wear it in combination with colour to ensure you don’t fade into the background.

If you are Indian:

·    Traditional colours of magenta, purple, burnt orange and red look amazing on you.  You don’t have to only wear these colours in a sari.  They can be incorporated into your everyday wardrobe too.
·    Avoid grey as it makes your complexion look grey.  If you don’t believe me, place a grey top close to your face and notice how ‘grey’ your under eye looks compared to a brighter colour.

How to wear a colour that might not suit you, yet you really like it:

I believe that colour carries energy.  If you are drawn to a specific colour, you need to wear that colour.  Here are ways to wear it.

·    Wear it in an accessory.  If you are drawn to yellow, but it makes you look washed out when you wear it, wear it in a bag or a pair of shoes. 
·    Wear it in a print.  You can wear the desired colour mixed with colours that do look great on you in a print.
·    Find the right shade.  If you are drawn to pink, you could wear anything from bright cerise to salmon pink.  Find the shade that suits you best.

If selecting your best colours still feels like mission impossible, ask a trusted friend who wears colour well or make use of a professional service.  Wearing the right colours can make the world of difference to the way you look and feel.

Remember to have fun with colour and don’t be afraid to experiment.

Need more help?

For those of you who would like some assistance to discover your best colours… a Personal Styling Session with Tracy Gold is ideal for you.

Personal Styling Session: 1h30min

Tracy Gold will assist you to create your own individual style according to your body-shape, colouring, personality, lifestyle, age and budget. Working with your existing wardrobe and The Tracy Gold Collection, she will assist you to determine what works for you, what doesn’t and why.

A Personal Styling Session will assist you to:

·    Learn to lose 5kg just by getting dressed in the morning.
·    Avoid having a wardrobe full of clothing, but nothing to wear.
·    Fill your wardrobe with clothing that makes you feel fabulous.

Follow Women24 on Twitter.


Read Women24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.