Your True Colors

Does anyone remember the “*Color Me Beautiful” beauty movement? This was based on the book by Carole Jackson, which started the whole “find your true colors” phenomenon in 1973. The concept was based on finding the right colors that suited your skin tone.

If you went to a Color Me Beautiful consultant, you learned what your “true colors” were. Included in the cost of the consultation, you received a color swatch book of “your” colors.

When my mother heard about this, she let me know immediately, and, Mom being Mom; booked us both for a consult. It was a lot of fun, and our own colors swatches became our “fashion bibles.” We found out that Mom was a “Spring/Summer” and that I was a “Winter.”

The concept was pretty ground-breaking. It was amazing to see how good you could look when wearing “your” colors. For example, my winter colors; jewel tones and bright whites look great on me, and complement my skin tone. But if I wear anything brown, beige, ivory; in fact, any earth tone; I look washed-out.

In high school, the “in” girls always favored brown, gold, beige, navy, etc. So many of us wore those same colors to fit in. However, on me they looked awful. Once I found my own colors, I looked (and felt) great.

I got to thinking more about what our “true colors” say about us. Whether or not we are wearing the “right” colors for our skin tones, we are drawn to specific colors like a magnet.

You could say that the colors you like mean this, that or the other thing. In fact, there are many books and web sites that can tell you what it means if you are attracted to a particular color.

I know that, for me, bright vibrant colors make me happy. If I am not feeling wonderful, I wear “my” colors and feel better.

One of Mom’s dearest friends made her a gorgeous knitted shawl of deep purples and indigo last year. Following Mom’s death last December, I took it home with me.

I like to drape it over my shoulders on cool mornings as I have coffee. Not only does its warmth comfort me, but the beautiful shades of purple make me feel uplifted somehow.

So, what are your  true colors? What colors make you happy? What colors are you drawn to? When you start looking, you will find that some colors will appeal to you; others may not.

There are some colors we just resonate with; I remember a woman I knew in Texas who always wore a bit of bright blue. She said it made her feel both happy and safe.

So whether you are a summer, fall, winter or spring, there are colors that have special meaning to you. It’s funny, but nearly everyone I’ve asked what their favorite color is just lights up. My oldest granddaughter, Ava, loves pink and purple, but then again, most little girls do.  Nowadays when I ask her she says, “pink and purple. And blue. And green. Oh, and yellow.”

When we color together, she always starts with a pink crayon; I start with a purple one.

I absolutely love this quote from Alice Walker, who wrote “The Color Purple:”

“I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it.”

I’ll bet it does, too.

*From Carole Jackson’s book, here are the seasonal colors and text:

Spring – “bright cheerful tones like salmon, turquoise, and teal. Your coloring will be enhanced by clothing with a bit of “sunshine” in their colors. You should never dress stark white or black, for they will make you look washed out. Your neutrals should have a hint of warmth like stone, khaki, warm white.”

Summer – “toned-down colors like subdued navy blue, a grey green or blue-grays, charcoals, and rose browns. Your image will be complimented by these dusty colors. You should never dress in vivid or saturated colors, for they will disrupt the serenity that the summer needs in her look. Your shirt colors should be somewhat soft like powder blue, dusty pink or soft white.”

Fall – “olives, golden browns and rich warm grays. You will glow in these harmonious environmental colors. Avoid clear bright shades, pure white and black which will make you look tired and faded. Also, avoid true pastel colors which will look cold against your complexion, giving you a pale and sickly appearance. Your blouses, in particular, should never be true white for this reason. Choose oyster and ecru (eggshell) instead.”

Winter – “deep, rich colors accented with jewel tones, and even wear bright white or icy pastels. A dark suit with cool undertones like dark navy, charcoal or black will complement your dynamic coloring. Avoid earth tones which can make you look sallow, and muted or powdery colors which can make you look shadowed. Remember, accents should be vibrant, and intense jewel tones.”

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