Do You Have Warm, Cool, or Neutral Undertones?

Skin Care

Young woman looking in mirror

The moment my friend at Sephora told me that I was wearing makeup with the wrong undertones, my life changed. OK, maybe not my whole life, but the part of my life that involves beauty products. After all, here at FutureDerm, cosmetics are a pretty big part of my life.

Though I’m sure some of you know what your undertones are, some of you may have struggled, gone through brands that seem to be wrong in one way or another. I’m usually the lightest shade and I couldn’t understand why, even when the shades weren’t more tan or pale than I am that they were just wrong. Then I realized that many brands cater to the most common undertones.

In particular, if a brand has few options, it’s likely that those options aren’t going to fit for everyone. And don’t let “intelligent,” color-changing makeup fool you, much of it is smoke and mirrors.

Here are easy ways to tell what your “undertone” is.

Eye and Hair Color

If your hair color is blonde, brown, or black, and your eyes are lighter, then you likely have “cool” undertones. This means your skin has pink or blue undertones (Make-Up).

If your hair color is red, blonde, or black, and your eyes are brown, hazel, or green, then you likely have “warm” undertones. This means your skin has yellow or gold undertones.

Check Out Your Veins


Look at your veins under your skin. If they have a bluish color, then you have cool undertones. If they’re something more greenish, they you have warm undertones (Women’s Health Magazine, Huffington Post).

White Towel or Paper Test

Hold a white towel piece of paper up to your clean skin in good light. If your skin seems to be a more blue, pink, or violet tinged, you’ve got cool undertones. If your skin seems more yellowish, then you probably have warm undertones (New Mexico State University).

Are You a Gold or Silver Jewelry Person?

Various jewellery and accessories on white background

Which looks best on you, gold or silver jewelry? If the answer is silver, it’s likely that you have cool undertones. If the answer is gold, then it’s likely you have warm undertones (Makeup).

What If None of These Are Quite Right?

If you don’t seem to get a straight answer from these — say, for example, you didn’t seem to be definitely pink/blue/violet or yellow, it’s possible that you have neutral undertones, which means your really neither cool or warm.

What Colors Look Best on You?

If you’ve got warm tones, you’ll want to go with earth tones, gold, bronzes, etc. If you have cool tones you’ll want to go with something jewel toned, pinks, blues, and purples (The Beauty Department).

If you’re looking to correct color, you’ll want to go with something that’s on the opposite end of the color spectrum. So if you’ve got gold undertones, go with something blue or greenish.

Bottom Line

Knowing your undertones can help you pick makeup that’s more flattering. In fact, for some people, this might explain why you’ve have trouble picking out the right makeup. If you’re having trouble, you can always ask a friend with a sharp eye to help you or go to your favorite makeup store or counter and ask for help.

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  • Natalie Bell

    @Rozy — I agree with Elle. You can go towards colors that will work for your skin tone. You might still be able to find colors that will make your eyes pop, but will work with your skin tone.

    @Elle — Thank you for commenting!

  • Go with your skin and lean more towards cool colors. Maybe you could play with warm colors in the summer when your skin has a bit of a tan.

  • Rozy

    My skin and hair are cool but my eyes are warm, what should I do

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