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making faces :: wearing the wrong colours, vol. 1

i've talked about doing this for a while, but i thought now was as good a time as any to get started. i've been writing for some time about seasonal colour analysis and specifically the 12-season sci/art model, based on evaluating colour by hue [warm vs cool], value [light vs dark] and chroma [saturated vs muted]. after a lot of playing around, i've narrowed myself down to a bright season [very high chroma], most likely bright winter [cooler and darker], but possibly bright spring [warmer and lighter]. 

in theory, that means that i should avoid colours that are soft [low in saturation], especially those that have an autumnal [brown, gold] heat to them. bright seasons don't have any of that in them, being a combination of cold, jewel-like winter and warm, fruity spring. so does that mean that those sorts of colours are off-limits to me forever? 

if you answered "yes", i'm assuming this is your first visit here. [which is fine. welcome. i love having new friends. look around, please. but you might as well know from the start that i don't respond well to absolute rules.]

today, i wore a look that should be completely wrong on me. the eye makeup is a combination of rouge bunny rouge "periwinkle cardinal" and "papyrus canary" with the pewter and white gold shades from guerlain's limited "liu" palette. more specifically, i used the white gold shade from liu on the inner part of the lid, "periwinkle cardinal" on the outer lid and then used the pewter shade to blend them. i used "papyrus canary" to soften the colours along the crease to the brow bone and added more of the white gold shade under the eyebrow as a highlight. i used a combination of the pewter and "periwinkle cardinal" along the lower lash line. 

for liner, i've used nars "baalbek" eye paint on the upper lash line and mac "i get no kick" along the lower water line. mascara is yves st. laurent effet faux cils baby doll. 

the cheeks are a combination of nars "torrid", a soft apricot, and guerlain "parure de nuit", a delicate white-coral-pink highlighter. 

finally, the lips are nars audacious lipstick "leslie". i've fallen behind in my audacious lipstick reviews, simply because there's so much new stuff to catch up with, but this is a fairly new acquisition and one that conflicts with everything about my colouring. it sits right on the border between brown and red, giving it a deep, sullen, ruddy look. it sits so perfectly on the red-brown boundary that i can't say with certainty which it is. in photos, it looks redder, but in person, it seems browner, especially in the feeble late autumn light we have now. 



i'm sharing this, because i like this look. i like it despite the fact that the elements aren't in line with my colouration. soft sage green and dirty pewter are anathema to a bright winter complexion that demands clarity and saturation above all. the hot clay colour of "leslie" is a poor choice for anyone who doesn't have a significant contribution from autumn in their colouring. nonetheless, i like this look. 

why? well, i think that there is enough contrast between the eyes and the lip to work. the eyeliner is dark enough to give definition, in combination with the black mascara. the blush/ highlighter combination may be a little warm for my skin, but it definitely gives that soft glow that benefits a spring-touched complexion [as opposed to the molten or lustrous metallic sheen that compliments autumnal colouring]. finally, while the lip colour might be too "hot" or muddled for a bright season complexion, it does have enough contrast with my skin to complement the wintery effect underneath. all seasons in winter's reach benefit from sharp contrast and when that is done right, you have a little more leeway on temperature and clarity. 

so what's the point of knowing your "season" if you can just cheat in whatever colours you want? well, i think it's a matter of knowing how to cheat in the colours you want. if i'd worn this with a bronze and cranberry eye combination, or a dirty orange shade of blush, or if i'd gone with a peachy-gold shade of lipstick, i don't think that i would have liked the results at all. which is a complicated way of saying that knowing the most important things about your personal season can be instructive in figuring out how to incorporate elements that wouldn't normally fall within your limitations. 

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