How To Make the Most of a Colour Consultation
Spending time and money refreshing your appearance saves you so much energy in the long run; it can rescue you from disappointing purchases, regretful impulse buys, time wasted wondering what to wear and endless searching for that ‘miracle’ clothing or beauty item that will take 10 years off…Make it easier on yourself and get it sorted now.
I’ve had two professional colour consultations. Here are my tips on what to look for and how to get the most from your colour appointment.
6 THINGS TO DO BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER YOUR COLOUR CONSULTATION
1: Choose a consultant who’s flexible. They should acknowledge exceptions to (or let your break) the rules! We dress not just to look good to others, but also for our own enjoyment. While a personal stylist (or makeup consultant like myself) teaches rules and principles, the best image consultants are flexible. They understand if you have something you were given or handed down and wear for sentimental reasons, or an item that makes your heart sing but isn’t your ideal fit or colour. While you’re learning, Megan might not encourage rule-breaking at first, but she’s playful and fun and real enough to know life isn’t black and white. Dressing should be rewarding AND fun!
2: Choose a colour consultant who is thorough. Especially if your hair is coloured, your consultant should cover your hair so it doesn’t skew their judgement – or yours! – during the colour draping. Not everyone does this. Megan covered my hair with a white scarf.
3: Ideally, be makeup-free for your consultation, for the same reason as above. I wore the smallest amount of neutral makeup I thought I might get away with, so I’d feel happier facing the mirror.
4: Be open to change and learning! Experts might not know everything about you and what you’re comfortable in, but I’ve had my best fashion discoveries when I’ve tried a combination I never thought would work for me!
5: Read your follow-up notes. Especially if you are new to this information, the notes will help clarify and reinforce what you discovered in your style consultation…and help you recall the ‘aha-moments’ you forgot!
6: If you get confused by the colour info when you get into the ‘real world’, keep it simple with just warm and cool. Even with what I’d consider an experienced ‘eye’ for colour, I struggled sometimes to tell the difference between some colours, or whether a swatch was winter or autumn etc.
Colours are divided first into warm and cool, then into 4 intensities. If you get confused by the intensities (tone, tint, shade, and pure) and can’t tell what season a colour falls into…pare it back to just warm and cool. I feel this makes the biggest impact initially.
When shopping or dressing, if you aren’t sure a shade is in your season, compare it with a similar shade. Colours aren’t in boxes, but on a continuum between cool and warm, with neutral in the middle. By comparing two colours, you’ll be more likely to see which is warmer/cooler and choose at least a ‘better‘ colour for you, even if not strictly your season.
Why get a Colour Consultation? + my experience with The Style Company
Have you ever ‘ummed’ and ‘ahhhd’ in hesitation about whether a certain colour suited you…but had no guidelines to help you decide?
You might have heard the theory some groups of colours flatter you more than others. I first heard about ‘colour seasons’ theory through ‘Colour Me Beautiful (the book and movement) back in the 80’s…yes I was only 9 years old but my mum started selling a range of makeup via direct sales. Part of her training included practicing draping people in swatches of fabric to assess their ‘colour season’. Mum draped me in satiny fabrics, deliberated, then diagnosed me as warm (not cool). So from then on, still unsure if she was right, I wore golden yellow, forest green, peach, browns and indulged in the colours of the 70’s in my regular retro op-shopping trips as a teenager.
When I first became a makeup artist I was keen to know how the colour seasons theory impacts on makeup colour choice. So I sought out a style coach and first ‘had my colours done’ in 2008. The result = Summer (cool). I’ve remembered and worked with the colour seasons in both my own personal dressing, and professional makeup work; taking educated guesses to choose the best colours and intensities for my brides, lesson customers and photoshoots.
In the years since, I’ve tweaked my style and dressing method – more recently being massively influenced (and loving it) by ‘Dressing Your Truth’ energy profiling, which mostly ignores the ‘colour seasons’ method.
So when I went to stylist Megan Hewett from The Style Company’s home for my own ‘colour analysis’, it was as a refresher in colour seasons theory – to see if I could make it work with the ‘Dressing Your Truth’ emphasis – and to learn more about how she serves her customers. Though I had experienced a similar session before and am fluent in the language of colour, Megan gave me the experience as though I was a newbie. 🙂 So I could tell you all about her from a customer’s experience of course!
The session was broken up in two parts: Colour Analysis and Style Analysis.
In colour analysis we looked at different tints, tones, shades and hues of colour and how each made me look. As she draped each colour in front of me, Megan looked at how it affected my skin colour, eye and possibly even teeth. She said the right colours will make my skin look like it’s glowing but the wrong ones can make me look jaundiced or sick – and she is right! Professional makeup can only make the best of a bad job when you’re wearing your worst colours. I saw the harmony created by my best colours and the life drain out of me when wearing the worst.
In the style session, Megan assessed my body in a very relaxed, kind way and, using the proportions she noted, talked me through the hemlines, necklines, styles and trends most flattering to my figure strengths and challenges. We also talked through my style personality. Finding and dressing your style personality is crucial to creating a wardrobe and outfits you love to live in.
Megan also shows customers how a little makeup can work with one’s colour season results, but this time, with me being a makeup artist and all, Megan skipped this part. Since I cover this in depth in my makeup lessons, she respected me too much to attempt teaching me, haha. We each have our fortés. 😉 After our session, Megan emailed my detailed, customised colour and style notes with examples.
I would highly recommend all Tauranga women book a double-whammy combo of makeup lesson with myself AND colours/style consultation with Megan. Do this – or anything similar with the right advice – and you’ll see it’s an investment that pays life-long dividends and earns you oodles of compliments.
My Lillybeth lesson customers can enjoy a exclusive discount on Megan’s services within 30 days of their Full Makeup Consultation.