Sunday, April 3, 2016

Understanding Olive Skin-tone

Yesterday I was shopping for a pink top at Marshalls.  I was looking for something to go along with a new soft white blazer I had purchased earlier in the week.  I found two tops (the same tops in fact, but in 2 different pink shades).  One was a cool bubble gum pink and the other was a brighter salmon-pink (or more of a coral pink).  I was torn about which one to get so I asked another lady who was shopping nearby.  She automatically said "Oh the the coral-pink, it goes so well with your olive skin-tone".  I thanked her and realized that I just had a massive 'a-ha' moment.  A majority of my colour journey has been about trying to figure out my season,  looking at my eyes and hair colour, trying to figure out if I'm cool, warm etc etc.  I always 'knew' I had an olive skin-tone, but I didn't focus too much on that because it's rarely represented in magazines and beauty books. You usually get makeup recommendations for light, medium, tan and dark skin tones.  Anyhow, I decided to do a little bit more research about Olive Skin.  I had some information from the time I attended my own makeup artistry college classes, so I started there and then moved on to reading various articles on-line and searched some pinterest pages.  This morning, I put it all together and came to this conclusion:

Olive skin-tone is a 'blend' of yellow/green and is in fact neutral.  There is a range of Olive skin tones from light olive, to deeper olive, to golden-olive etc etc

Olive skin-tone is difficult to pin-point in seasonal colour analysis because of the apparent 'yellow' tones.  This is not to say that olive skin tone can't lean warmer, but the answer is 'skin-deep' :)

The cool/warm ratio is also difficult to pin-point in the traditional manner.  If you go by the vein test where blue is cool and green is warm, olive skinned gals will be lost because we have a blue-green blend that doesn't lean more one way or the other.

Olive skinned gals will often find that they need lipstick shades with added brown, mahogany tones.  They look great in reds, wine and dark apricot/peach shades, as well as deeper rose/pink shades.

I was personally torn between many seasons in my search for seasonal colour analysis.  However, that being said, every time I was draped in person, I was most definitely an autumn.  Yet, at home, I would be drawn to the summer-deep cool shades.  My 'olive skin' is the reason for this.  In seasonal colour analysis, yes, I am a warm autumn :)  However, I feel that if I were to step outside of the sphere of colour analysis, I am most definitely a neutral skin tone that naturally needs brown/mahogany tones (a warm autumn feature), but that also looks great in deep summer hues.  In the end, its all about the system that you choose and works for you.

Regardless if you follow colour analysis or not, olive skin is beautiful and the more you can learn/discover about this skin tone, the more prepared you will be to put your best face forward.  Here is a look I created that is perfect for my own medium olive skin tone:

For this look I started with a yellow toned concealer and blended in a rose-beige foundation to play up the neutral balance of my skin.  I then added back some warmth by applying NYX Ignite/Passion blush (apparently a dupe for MAC Warm Soul blush).  I then blended MAC soba and woodwinked and applied this from the lid into the crease.  I lined my eyes with Urban Decay Demolition eyeliner and smudged the upper lash line before finishing with black mascara.  For my lipstick, I spent some time studying the natural colour my lips turned if I were to pinch them or bite the lower lip.  I found that it was consistent with a mahogany shade (which matches my warm autumn seasonal fan).  I matched this colour by applying MAC Spice lipliner and then applying NARS Pigalle lipstick :)

I hope that this post was helpful and I look forward to creating and writing more posts about Olive Skin Tone and makeup looks to up-play this skin tone :)


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