How to determine the best hair color for your skin

Sarah Schossow, expert hair and makeup artist shares with us the secret to choosing the best hair color that is in tune with your skin tone. Let’s read on to defy some myths and choose what is right for us:


Most of you know a color and cut can make or break the entire look your trying to achieve. Some of you don’t know what color to choose or better yet what tone looks most flattering on your skin along with the undertones of your skin. This is one of the most common misunderstandings because clients and even stylists will choose a color solely on what they like not what looks good. Choosing the right hair color will complement and enhance the way you look and it will make your face have that glow, even look younger if that’s what you want to accomplish.

How to determine your skin tone: Most of you fall between the warm and cool tones, very few look great in any shade. To determine this wash your face so your true skin shows. In natural light hold up different shades of paper separately against your skin. First yellow, orange and red then white, green, silver and blue paper. If your skin looks more flattering with yellow/red/ orange than your most likely in the warm family; if your skin looks good with green/blue/silver/ white paper test your most likely in the cool toned family.

Of course your color can change with the seasons and depending how much you’re in the sun, so pay attention to your undertones. Olive skin has green undertones, which are best complimented by red shades. Not necessarily a bold red but a strawberry blonde or auburn brunette will work also. Someone who has red undertones will suit cooler shades, violet reds, cool icy blondes and mocha browns. Darker skin tones should stay away from medium browns and dark blondes, as they do not create enough contrast between the skin and hair. Either goes darker or lighter.

Eyes: Blue eyes pop with copper tones placed around the face. Hazel eyes can pop by choosing the perfect shade that compliments the undertones. Brown eyes depending on the tones will be complimented with the same undertones as the eyes.

Cool undertones: Look best with warm hair colors like orange reds, golden blondes, rich honey almond browns and chocolate brunette. Think Jennifer Lopez, Jessica Simpson, Halle Berry and Adriana Lima.

Warm undertones: Cooler the color the better. Think Kate Middeleton, Jennifer Anniston, Blake Lively and Gisele Bundchen.

Blondes: there are wide ranges of tones you can be if you are blonde or want blonde highlights. If you have light skin tone you should go with a golden, light or strawberry blonde. If your tone is medium, then you can have more color to your hair. You can get beige blonde or a golden hue. The most important thing is to make sure you have warmer tones in your hair to match your skin. The lighter your skin the less coloration you should be adding to your hair. That means if your extremely pale than bright red or jet black may not be for you.

I know this all can be a bit overwhelming so here is a guide that you can go off of with a few celebrity examples. Most important thing is your color should look good right away, not to feel as if you have to get used to it before it starts to grow on you. If you don’t have an eye for this take your time and once you get the hang of choosing the right color you will have to much fun next time when you get your hair colored and will love, love, love the results!


Nicole Kidman


If your skin is: Pale with cool blue or green undertones

Try: Warm gold blonde

You want to be careful to not go too ashy because this will tend to wash you out.


Zooey Deschanel


If your skin is: Medium with warm undertones

Try: Dark chocolate brown

Dark colors will make light eyes pop, but black is too harsh on warm coloring. Dark chocolate brown with medium brown highlights will soften the color.


Emma Stone


If you skin is: Pale with warm undertones

Try: Golden red

Pale skin women should play up a contrast between their hair and complexion.


Kim Kardashian


Olive with warm undertones

Try: Darkest brown

This color is rich without being too harsh.


Jessica Simpson


Light to Medium with cool undertones

Try: Caramel or golden blonde

Using caramel and golden shades can add warmth to medium complexions with cool undertones to help give a glow, try not to go too light this will leave skin looking dull.


Halle Berry


Dark with cool undertones

Try: Darkest brown with chocolate highlights.


Jennifer Lopez


Medium with cool undertones

Try: Dark caramel brown with highlights 

If you are in Brickell, Miami you can visit Sarah at Rik-Rak Salon located in the Four Seasons Hotel and book your appointment with her.

For more inspiration you can also find Sarah on instagram @beautybysarahe ❤



2 thoughts on “How to determine the best hair color for your skin

  1. I have warm undertones and am trying out blonde for the first time! I love how it makes my brown eyes stand out, but it’s hard finding the perfect shade. This is a nice guide, thanks for sharing!


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