Hair and Eye Colour and Season

By way of documenting information, since this website serves as a content management system as well as a blog, this is an update in my thinking on this important topic.

In the wonderful discussions in our Facebook Fan Club, my belief that hair colour is useless in determining Seasons surfaced in a thread about the unique Season of Bright Spring. Women often ask which celebrity might embody that colouring and I can never think of one. This is the one group for which no average appearance exists. I think of Mrs. Laura Bush, with her turquoise eyes that tilt upwards. The French actress Audrey Tautou might serve as a dark-eyed example, but she has such sharp darkness and opacity of skin that she is probably more weighted towards Winter, with a smaller fraction of Spring.

Please, if anyone is finding the jargon confusing, do ask in the comments. And if you’re a Fb member, please pardon the reiteration.

While some PCA systems only recognize members of this Season as having clear blue or green eyes, but never brown eyes, I believe that brown-eyes Springs exist, and are usually mixed with a little Winter (thereby making them Bright Springs). Since the 1980s, when 4 Season systems were more prevalent, many very experienced and skilled colour analysts believe that hair color and eye colour remain important factors in determining your Season. I don’t.

I am not here to say that I am right and anyone else is wrong. Our philosophies may diverge a little. The same could be said of any two practitioners in any field. Having your colours analyzed is still the best, fastest, easiest way of spending less money smarter and looking way the heck better.

Remember that I define Season not by how you look, but by which group of colours make your skin look as perfect, young, healthy, and evenly colored as it possibly can. We figure that out using many sets of very specially coloured drapes. When we find the set that enhances you above all the others, what we have really uncovered are the exact pigments already in your skin, in your body. When you then wear the colours you already are, you look like magic because your person and your attire is sending the same wavelength of energy to the viewer. That feels really good to be and to look at.

L to R, True Summer, Dark Winter, True Summer.

So, for hair and eye colour to play a factor in Season, they would have to contain the exact same pigments as those in the skin.

We know that the genes that code hair, skin, eyes (eye colour and line patterns in the iris, since those quite consistently seen together), and personality are not the same ones.

We know too that some combination of these genes often travel together when the chromosomes divide (or are transcribed together when the proteins are made, or there is some sort of genetic coupling at work), because we so often see certain traits together like blue eyes and blond hair. I think it’s scientifically reasonable to say that these genes are commonly expressed together in the individual or phenotype. If anyone knows more about human genetics than I do, I would love to know your opinion.

When I look at the people whose skin I’ve analyzed, the colours that are in the skin, and so in the colours in their colour analysis palette that the drapes matched with, contain the vast majority of eye colours (and certain Season-specific line patterns) in 80% of people. I extrapolate this to say that eye colour and pattern can be correlated to skin pigmentation, and therefore Season, 80% of the time. Since it’s so very hard to correctly identify the precise colours in eyes, that value might be reduced to 70%.

The hair colours are present in the swatch book about 60% of the time. There are True Winters with orange hair. There are Light Summers with pink-red-orange hair. Colour variability abounds, and with eyebrows even more so. This says to me that hair colours and skin colours are genetically linked about 60% of the time (or less, because picking out the exact tones that create a given hair colour is really difficult).

Character traits are consistent among people in a Season pretty often, but are predominant to the Season stereotype only about 40% of the time. Personality traits are too diluted by experience, environment, and so on. Personality is too much of a hurricane to try to figure Season with. It’s a fun curiosity.

Rachel from Truth Is Beauty also made the fascinating point that as races interbreed, the eye-skin color association should fade. I’ll make the strong point that if you have not visited that website, and you have an interest in colour, you really should. She has examples of the 12 Seasons, chosen with great accuracy and attention to detail. The information is also organized in a beautiful way.

 

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25 thoughts on “Hair and Eye Colour and Season”

  1. Christine,

    Fascinating article and interesting observations. I just had a very careful sci-art analysis to help with some confusion because I’ve been analyzed by sci-art as bright winter and soft autumn ( and by other systems across the spectrum). Neither of which felt right to me. The drapes clearly showed soft summer which seems exactly right to me.

    However, I don’t have the stereotypical low contrast look of soft seasons. I have a good bit of contrast in my appearance. My analyst said that my best look might be wearing the lightest and darkest of the colors together. Or favoring the deepest colors.

    Do you think that the “expected” level of contrast holds true in some percentage of the cases but not all for each of the 12 seasons?

    Thanks

  2. Hi Christine,

    Thank you for discussing the elusive Bright Spring. I have long suspected my boyfriend to be a brown-eyed Spring, possibly a Bright one. I’ve always been fascinated with his coloring even before I knew about color analysis, because I’ve rarely seen anything like it. He has deep, warm brown eyes and golden, strawberry blonde hair. He seems to be verging on Winter because he has the spokes eye pattern. He looks fresh and alive in bright, clear colors. Here are two pictures: http://fuchsiaheartsphotos.shutterfly.com/pictures
    I would love to hear your comments about his coloring. And, no, you don’t have to guess his season! ;) Thanks– Charlotte

  3. Hair and eye colour are polygenic, and I don’t think they necessarily travel together all that much. You see might blonde hair and startling brown eyes, you see blue-eyed dark brunettes, you get black hair and brown eyes. Watch your baby’s eye colour change over the first 18 months or so – and change continues all through life.

    The largest organ in the human body is the skin. Eyes are relatively small in the big scheme of things, and yet it is to eyes above all that we are drawn. Thought about like this, I’d say that skin colour is the theme and eye colour probably adds the key transitions and incidentals, but hair, so easy to change, is probably the least of it. There’s some complex alchemy going on in the eye of the beholder and there’s undoubtedly some very rough and loose associations between all these things and individual seasons, but the fine details are so pleomorphic that I suspect Christine is right in cautioning against reductionism – field testing is the only way.

    Shorter version: never say never!

  4. My hair has changed a lot during the years! When I was born my hair was blond, then it gradually darkened (it was dark brown when I was in the kindergarten) and in my teens it lightened a bit…now it’s a sort of dark ash blond (like the boy’s hair in the photograph) with dark eyebrows. So it’s nearly impossible to discover my season basing myself on hair color (considering that some people think it’s brown, other people think it’s dark blond, so it depends also on our perception of color and what we consider light and dark). My eyes have also changed, when I was a child they were deep teal blue and now they are blue-grey/green: http://img821.imageshack.us/img821/4151/immaginerku.jpg . So, according to that, we should change season several times in our lifetime, because we are always changing, although it’s an imperceptible process…But if we want to analyze ourselves considering hair and eye color, which one should we pick? The one we have now or the one we had 6 or 7 years ago? Which one is the most truthful? Considering for example that I’ve never dyed my hair, it’s an impossible question to answer for me. The hair color I have now is not less truthful than the one I had in the past and vice versa…and this applies also to eye color/pattern. So I don’t think hair and eyes alone could be of much help in determining color seasons…At least, they weren’t of much help to me, because they are not the stereotyped ones I see on books, on the Internet, celebrities, etc. and in lack of other (non-stereotyped) examples, no wonder someone could be confused. Unfortunately I’ve never had the opportunity of being draped, because there’s no such thing as color analysis where I live…but I’ve drawned some general conclusions by seeing which kinds of color flatter my skin best and which ones make me look ill and tired. I think I could be a sort of True/Soft Summer, but it’s difficult to say, since I don’t have all the colors of the drapes you use lol and I don’t have enough perception of color to catch the minimal changes a color provokes in my skin…So as far as I’m concerned I could be any season really… :/

  5. So, I’m rather confused about my coloring. I think I’m a Bright Spring, but since some people say that only Brunettes can be Bright Springs I’m a little stuck. By your reasoning, a blonde could be a Bright Spring? My eyes are blue, but shift from anything from steel blue to aqua. My skin is a pale golden yellow, but I still look good in some cool colors (and get compliments in them). I was about to give up on seasonal analysis altogether, but your post is making me reconsider. Thanks for writing such clear and thoughtful articles.

  6. i think Christine may be putting up a post about this, but i was just recently analyzed by Maytee Garza who is highly trained in the Sci/Art system, and i turned out to be Bright Spring! i’m 1/2 Korean and 1/2 Caucasian. i have very dark hair (it seems) but in the sun, glows red/orange (naturally since i was a kid). actually when i was really young, before 8 or 9 years old, my hair was a warm nut brown color. i have seemingly dark eyes in photos but in natural light, and when i wear the Bright Spring colors, they are actually warm glowing topaz/hazel. my skin to hair ratio is very contrasting, and i have clear neutral complexion with yellow in it, Spring’s undertone. there may be another post up about this with some pics, but here is my PCA “reveal” photo set for anyone who is curious (i know i was one of those people considering Bright Spring pre-draping and could never find enough info/pics about it so i’m more than happy to share with anyone who wants to take a gander):

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/57647704@N02/sets/72157625865752225/with/5422869268/

    hope this helps. but as Christine said, i really think that i am not your typical Bright Spring, although i have seen some examples (there’s a girl on Truth is Beauty’s Bright Spring page that reminded me of my coloring) that resonated with my own coloring.

  7. I admit I was skeptical at first- for me Redheads were always Autumn/ warm, Blonds were always Summer/cool etc. but now I look at redheads and see the possibility that they may be cool, blonds may be warm … etc. etc…..hmmm…..

  8. Meredith,
    The next article is for you and so many others with the same questions. But you’re right, hair colour is the least useful trait to know Season and anything is possible.

  9. My bf had red hair as a toddler, he still has some red highlights, but I suspect that he is deep winter.

  10. This is something I have struggled with, but I am now a firm believer that hair color is not very useful in determining ones season. I have very warm hair–dark golden blonde, almost orange-y. For years, I thought that meant I was a Spring or Autumn. Yet I look best in blue-red, soft purple, and teal. Yellows, oranges & true reds look ghastly on me. They make me look jaundiced. I’m pretty sure I’m a Soft Summer, despite my naturally warm hair color.

  11. If there is no typical hair/eye combo for a season i am just a wee bit puzzled why you recommend hair colours for the different seasons. In other posts you have suggested that soft summers should have light brown hair or go for taupe highlights. This always throws me because I am soft summer but have a natural dark blonde hair colour that is lighter than taupe.

  12. Was thinking about the association between melanin and neurotransmitters (background in medical sciences, here), and found this interesting lay article on coat colour and temperament: http://www.ratbehavior.org/CoatColor.htm

    I’d tend to agree that inheritance and association is far from the whole story (lest we forget, social history is littered with the appalling consequences of self-serving assumptions about pigmentation, and I’ve thought twice about posting this as a result, even in this forum of consummate civility and decency), but it probably can’t be dismissed completely.

  13. So it would not be unusual for a Winter (I think I’m a Deep Winter but not sure) to have a very warm eye color? As you can see from my photo, I am quite pale and my hair darkest ash brown/black, but my eye color is definitely a very yellowed brown, very warm.
    Incidentally, I checked out the post on the lovely girl who was a brown eyed Spring, and was suprised as I assumed she would have been a Winter. Her skin is not as light as my own, but our coloring was similar. I would never think someone with this coloring could possibly be a Spring. What a surprise! She looked wonderful in her drapes. I suppose there will always be exceptions to established color rules, and I’m still learning.

  14. Susan,
    Dark Winter most definitely can have a warm eye. I have a green-hazel eyed DW daughter, with a lot of gold in her eyes.

  15. I still don’t know what I am, I think Soft Autumn. Grey green eyes, very fair, medium mousy brown hair, that has red flecks in the sun. As a child there were light golden flecks.
    Seem to have yellowish, red in the skin.

    I try to stick to neutral colors. I want to dye my hair this week end, should I put more red or gold in it? I’m going in to the salon. You would think they should know, but the last lady didn’t do well.

  16. Oh and also, one time my sister in law dyed my hair this.. Copper penny color, well everyone ran up to me in church and thought it was so fab. So I wonder what that would mean for me season wise..

  17. Nikki,
    I wish I could help. I can’t do Season from photos let alone verbal descriptions. I hope you get run up to the church again though :)

  18. This is so interesting to me…I know I am a summer (winter colors completely wash me out and make me look dead), and I think I look best in what you describe as the popsicle colors of light summer. I look especially good in barbie doll pink, lemon yellow, turquoise, soft white, and powder blue. I have very fair skin with a lot of pink in it, and soft blue eyes. However, I have medium brown hair bordering on dark brown (sometimes reddish highlights). Eyebrows and lashes are very light though. When I was a toddler, I was strawberry blond but by the time I was about 6 years old I wasmedium to dark ash brown. So I never thought I could be a light summer because of the hair, but I am fairly sure i am. Have you seen anyone like this before?

  19. Jennifer,

    Sorry for the delay, I’ve been away. Your coloring and reactions to colours sound very Light Season to me. If Reese Witherspoon and all the other typical Light Summers out there were not so processed and we ever saw them in their natural state, their hair is probably medium brown. The point though is NOT “How light is the person to look at?”. The point IS “How light are the colours that make their skin its most perfect?” Barbie doll pink and strawberry blond can also very much be Light Spring. Everyone darkens with age, even Heather Locklear.

  20. “The point though is NOT ‘How light is the person to look at?’ The point IS ‘How light are the colours that make their skin its most perfect?’ ”

    Christine, if you don’t include a section of Christinisms in your upcoming book, someone else should certainly compile them. You’re so quotable; you express core truths about color with perfect clarity and precision. I often hear your words in my head when I’m thinking about color.

  21. Hi Christine,

    I love your website and especially appreciate this article because it helps me understand my long-held suspicion that the skin tone is the only personal coloring that counts in color analysis. I’ve never had any formal color analysis but Carole Jackson’s “Color Me Beautiful” readily convinced me I’m a Summer. The major differences in the four palettes simply knocked out the other three possibilities for me. The lipstick test alone left no doubt–rose is the color for me–but then, too, I’ve been complimented on my “lipstick” when I haven’t been wearing any, but I’ve been wearing a rose pink blouse that makes me look healthy.

    But the “dominant characteristics” theory confused me because I’m neither clearly blonde nor clearly brunette. My eyes are soft blue, but according to later “Color Me Beautiful” titles, any Summer may have soft blue eyes–hair color seems to be stressed as the Season determinant. I felt these books were lumping me with Soft Summers, and I’m farther from an Autumn than from any other Season. I look terminally ill in Autumn colors.

    Your articles on True, Light, and Soft Summers have helped me recognize my coloring as Light Summer, not Spring but needing clearer colors than True or Soft Summer colors. I look much better in deep rose than in burgundy, and in mid-tone colors than dark colors. And I don’t have to have my hair highlighted blonde to look my best!

    Thanks again for your enlightening articles.

  22. Hi Christine,
    I totally agree with you. I consider skin to be the most important element in color analysis – it is the largest organ of the human body. As color analysis is based on simultaneous contrast, it is just by placing the drapes near someone’s face that you wil be able to determine their best colors. I believe when you base your choices on what someone “should be” based on their hair or eye colors, you miss the whole point of seeing how a certain color affects someone’s appearance based on the simultaneous contrast of colors.
    I have been analyzing people for 17 years – also trained with SciArt – and also have found everything is possible. For me, color analysis is similar to music – there are many books that can explain it, but music just exists when you listen to it. It’s the same with color.

  23. I like your phrase “someone should be”. I think this is where the errors arise, because it becomes too much of the left brain insisting on its preconceived beliefs. Blonde = Spring, and that voice is hard to shut down. To use another analogy, as you did with music, to draw a table, the left brain will try to make all 4 legs of equal length, which of course they are not in a drawing. PCA for me is a unique exercise in quieting the very demanding left brain that thinks it knows everything.
    I don’t recognize your name, Ilana. Should you be included in the Sci\ART analyst directory? If so, please send me an email to christine@12blueprints.com, with a website if you have one or an email address. Feel free to join the group on Facebook as well. We keep a directory there too, in the Discussions tab, under Certification of Sci\ART analysts.

  24. I love this website. I found it after years of wondering which colors I should wear. I look awful in lighter earth tones but found some deep earth tones weren’t too bad on me. But I look great in navy’s and black too so I couldn’t decide because I have light golden brown hair and blue eyes so I though, I can’t be an autumn or a winter, I must be a soft summer. I finally has a color analysis done from a sci/art specialist and I am a dark winter. The dark winter colors are colors that I have always been drawn to and what is actually most in my closet. I knew what looked good on me, I just couldn’t find the correct label because I was too caught up in eye and hair color. My skin in a medium olive tone and the dark winter brings it to life.

  25. I have been reading the comments posted. I have a question?? Is it possible for a Soft Autumn to have muted red hair, light skin color with pink undertones. I have tried the Warm and Light Springs and the colors are either too bright or just not the correct colors. I have tried peach and coral lipsticks and blushes and they was me out. Today I purchased a warm pink lipstick and blush and I look “more alive” in these colors. I look fine in the camel, beige and lighter neutral colors. Are there any suggestions? I was told by another consultant to go with the colors that look best on me no matter what “season” I am suppose to be. She said “sometimes there are exceptions to the seasons. It is best to go with what looks best on you even if is not your “season”. “You are looking for what looks the best on you even though you may be classified as one season. This is not an exact science, everyone is different and sometimes there are differences with a specific person and season”. Thank you for your comments.

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