True Autumn’s Best Hair Colour

I adore the company of True Autumn women. Something about their naturalness is very relaxing. They have a take-it-or-leave-it-but-this-is-me attitude that I love.

I don’t see many True Season clients, with the exception of True Summers who outnumber all other Seasons combined by 1:3, and I practice 12 Season Colour Analysis! Very complicated colouring, True Summer, and all too easy to misplace into another Season.

Like all the True Seasons, because they’ve been around longer, wrong ideas about the palette and the style are more entrenched and more outdated. True Autumn is thought to be all khaki and pumpkin. So not. Think more of an evening sky dripping liquid orange gold into a molten ocean. True Autumn is every color of coffee, spice, chocolate, a golden home-baked loaf, a glorious pie crust. Envision Bollywood colors.

Shying away from heat is a natural reflex. Before their personal colour analysis, a True Autumn woman often arrives with flat, beige hair that does not enhance her. She has gotten used to light hair or believed the someone who told her that women need to lighten hair as they age. Meanwhile this woman’s face, clothing, jewelry, and energy could say everything. Beige hair colour is aging.

In other cases, the woman placed herself among the Winter Seasons and the hair is too cool and too red, which looks crisp and severe, like the pie crust burned round the edges.

Aim for Bambi eyes and melting milk chocolate hair. True Autumn emanates a warmth that is comfortable, a darkness that is medium, and a sultriness that is extreme. When I see them a few weeks after their colour analysis, I can barely take my eyes off them and I can tell that they are getting used to that reaction.True Autumn doesn’t strive to get noticed, but these women have no choice once their colours are right.

When I plan outfits or makeup for this gorgeous group, I always remind myself that they are not well suited to very darks or very lights. Colours can go to warm creamy buff and as dark as 70% chocolate, but would not reach all the way to black and white. The extreme of lightness and darkness, so-called high contrast, is way too sharp. The overall effect to the viewer when they see the woman head to toe should be medium to medium-dark. The colours in this chair offer a good range of base hair colours.

Every person in every Season has to make a darkness adjustment with her colour analyzed palette. Some women will look or feel better in lighter colors than others. The hair right colour is some shade of brown, not beige, or apricot, or butterscotch, or really not yellow blond. Think of Susan Sarandon and Russell Crowe. Would lighter hair enhance their strength and presence? I don’t see that it would.

Autumns are often thought to be red-haired, and it is possible but not common. They can certainly wear a dark copper highlight if they chose, but the natural colour is not often red. The red would not be carrot, it would be squash. Carrot’s clear yellow-orange, as Rupert Grint’s, belongs to a Spring. The colours in the chair below are the right highlight range. The wicker basket is Soft Autumn. The dried flowers are too light as a highlight for any Autumn I know. The silver lanterns on the left side would be pretty on a Light Summer/Spring.

On this chart, I like golden chestnut and henna red. For a highlight, I would choose copper blonde. Obvious redness in the hair of Soft Autumn beyond muted apricot is too much. This Season can manage it far better.

I didn’t choose Light Copper Blonde because it would make obvious stripes, and break up the molten metal heat that works so amazingly well.



17 thoughts on “True Autumn’s Best Hair Colour”

  1. Welcome back! We’ve missed you! Enjoyed this post — I think True Autumns may be the most striking of all the types when they wear “their” colors. They shouldn’t forget their deep teal and olive-toned greens. And the lovely maroon of some autumn leaves — it has to be just right, not too cold or dark.

  2. As a True Summer, I found it interesting that you see so many of us compared to other seasons. Is there really that many of us or are we more apt to be analyzed due to other reasons?

  3. It is so interesting that you find a majority of clients are in the True Summer category because there are so few cosmetics to be found for it. In this current “era” it seems the Autumns have so many choices with the brown golden shades in the majority . Clothing colors are much easier to find lately than a few years ago for True Summer, but, oh, the makeup is such a difficult search. You really have a delightful ability to give us “picture” words. I thank you again for taking so much of your time to educate us and it involves a great deal of your generosity.

  4. Thank you Christine! I feel as though you are speaking only to me. True, my natural hair color is a level 8 beige…blah. I often feel as though I often feel pressure to get highlights like everyone else, but I feel they do not enhance my look as they do for others. In fact I feel they even detract. Even subtle ones. Thanks for confirming it’s okay NOT to have highlights! My hair color now is an all over level 7 Auburn demi-glaze. It’s perfect!

  5. There are no more True Summers than anyone else. I see these women because of some combinations of frustration with finding a unifying theme in colour, frustration with getting wide and varied advice that never feels right, because it’s complicated palette to figure out on your own, and because the Summers are more often put into other Seasons than any other.

  6. Christine do you really find True Autumns shy away from heat? That surprises me. As a True Autumn I want to embrace it. I want to dive into your top sunset picture.

    Having too blond hair, yep been there, ok when you are younger. My hair is almost all natural now. It isn’t as dark as what you link in the chart for TA’s though. I’ve been told it looks golden brown or golden coppery brown (I think it is dark golden/coppery blonde) but all semantics I guess. I’m closer to SA side so my hair is not dark though I can go a shade darker which enhances me better than going a shade lighter. I can’t go too dark because warmth is so important and the darker it (hair, clothes, makeup) go the harder it is to see warmth, if that makes sense.

    Oh and that chair in the 2nd picture with the basket. That is my chair!, Well not my chair per se but it is exactly the same as the chair I’m sitting as I type this. lol

  7. Golden chestnut and light golden chestnut are very close to my hair.
    First picture with the chair… It feels so… Like “It’s me in colour” – I don’t know how to explain it in a normal way! :-)))

  8. I have to say I am almost one hundred percent convinced that I am a True Autumn! Even some of the personality traits and the attitude seem to fit me. ;)
    I am almost always color analyzed as either a dark autumn or a winter, (or just a dark season in general) because of my light skin and dark hair, and the obvious amount of contrast I have in my natural coloring. But I swear that my absolute worst colors are fuchsia, shocking pink, hot pink, magenta, almost any pale dusty blue and especially black!
    People always tell me I look really nice when I wear orange or yellow-green, and I honestly believe that orange, peach, apricot and salmon might be more flattering on me than red. And the fact that you say that most true autumns are actually brunettes, Christine, makes me feel even more convinced that I am a True Season.
    I think the hair color recommendations fit me perfectly too. I have had my hair done medium golden brown with really deep gold highlights before, and I received lots of compliments. However, I get told that extremely pale yellow blond highlights make me look way older. And recently I changed my hair color to a solid dark brown that is close to the color of a coffee bean with no highlights. My dad asked me if I was trying to be a goth! He also said something like he noticed the color more than my face I think.
    And recently, I’ve started to notice more and more that on me, the color black stands out way too much! I think if I wear anything black you just see the color a lot and not me.
    Sorry, I know this was a lot to write, I just really felt like posting this! I’m pretty sure that I know my color season. I still think that one of these days I really need to come and see you for my color draping Christine, just to see what my actual ideal colors really are! :)

  9. The image won’t open, Claudia. I have no idea about Season from photos. Though I often think of True Autumn with brown eyes, I know for a fact that it’s not absolute, and Soft Autumn as well. Dark Autumn seems to have consistently brown eyes, but I’m open to anything.

  10. Dear Christine,

    Love your thoughts about the True Autumn. It makes so much sense to me as someone who was CMB colour analysed as a Spring, then an Autumn, then a soft Autumn and finally as a warm Autumn with a very experienced House of Colour Consultant and Warm or True Autumn is the colour range that works for me.

    I am a dark blonde who wears my hair chestnut or medium chocolate and was so pleased to see what you wrote about hair colour.

    Please can you explain what you mean by bambi eyes?

    I have green/grey eyes with golden flecks.

    I try to avoid any harsh make up looks and have recent;u moved to brown mascara and away from overly bright lipsticks (such as Clinique’s gorgeous Dubonnet which I loved).

    I am looking for a warm, intense, natural , sexy look!

    Many thanks in advance,


  11. Bambi eyes are melting chocolate. They are a warm brown without a trace of the black that incoming Winter can place in the colouring of the Dark Autumn and the stronger Winter blends. The expression doesn’t so much represent a measurable colour as a feeling.

  12. Many thanks Christine! I love this site and the way you write so intuitively about colour.

  13. I’m very inspired. I LOVE your passion for colour. It’s very telling that this is your craft and you have mastered it. I have always loved colour. I was born in the tropics and in the summer, so from birth I was surrounded by vibrant, energetic often intense colours. Colour has had such a valuable impact on my life. Thank you for sharing your gift and for being so great at what you do Christine. :)

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