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| Best Makeup Colours : True Autumn

Best Makeup Colours : True Autumn

access_time 2010/05/28 account_circle chat_bubble_outline 40 Comments
True Autumn is one of the 4 True Seasons. In 12 Season colour analysis,  the natural colours of 3 to 4 times more people falls into the 8 Neutral Seasons, meaning the blends of 2 True Seasons.

True Autumns generally look medium in darkness. The palette colours reach a darkness level similar to that of coffee. It is when the entire palette is fanned out that we perceive more overall darkness. As with Summer, colours are still softened, including the dark ones.

The unity of the colours is created by gold. The warmth gives a look that is so rich that colours, alone and together, may seem brighter than they are.

Gold is grayer than yellow, hence the earthier colours of Autumn relative to the fruit salad feeling of Spring. Are the colours drab? Maybe if the only colour in the outfit is army green. Pumpkin, curry, warm turquoise and teal, deep periwinkle, and bronzed red and purple are a long way from dreary. True Autumns are often practical people who don’t care for show and fuss and may need time to get comfortable with the glowing warmth.

The  skin of True Autumn wearing her colours appears lit by an Arizona sun. Bronzer is a fabulous way to heighten the warm burnish of the skin. Pink blush is not ideal, but a touch of warm gold creates golden russet or adobe blush, which along with the bronzer, is hard to beat.

They also can have metal colors (gold, copper, bronze) in the iris of the eye, a most amazing effect, and even more when repeated in the natural highlights in the hair. A warm gold eyeshadow, placed as a dot in the center of the upper eyelid, just above the eyeliner, then covered with the neutral eyeshadow, adds dimension and accentuates the gold.

The colour palette offers many options for cosmetics. Here are the basics:

Best makeup colours for true autumn

Are you a True Autumn? Look at Clinique lipstick in Paprika, Lancome Couture Suede, and Revlon Sandalwood Beige.

Metallic effects, especially in earth tones, is so successful on Autumn colouring that it may work well in makeup also. Be discerning here. For some, shimmer may appear artificial, especially if near to Soft Autumn. If kept to one area at a time, such as upper eyelid or lips, the effect is beautiful.


40 Thoughts on Best Makeup Colours : True Autumn

  • "; ?> Nanina

    Hi Christine,

    I love your site! Your blog entries are really insightful (and helpful, for that matter!) 🙂
    I’ve been wondering about something makeup-related for the last few days… In the Sci/Art concept, you say every season can have every hair and eye color. But what’s someone to do who has skin that is complemented by warm colors (i.e. like an autumn’s), but has strictly cool eyes, where the color glows in cool colors but the skin at the eyes looks rather grey with them? I can’t figure it out 😉

    Thanks 🙂

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman


      It just means that you’re probably a Neutral Season, so perhaps predominantly warm (because it’s the perfection of the skin that always takes precedence) but with a trace of one of the cooler Seasons.

      You know, Cathy, I do too.

  • "; ?> Jes

    Thank you very much! Perhaps I’m a True Autumn. Makeup colours are great, I use some of them already. Tomorrow I will run to a store to try lipstick colours you recommended! It’s so hard to find a good lipstick for everyday!

  • "; ?> nana

    I guess I am a case of mixed undertones, for I have inherited my mothers warm, yellow-something as well as my fathers cooler greenish-olive undertone. My mother is a true autumn, with her warm, dark skin that truly has copper undertones, warmbrown eyes and dark chestnut hair with natural copper and red highlights. Nobody looks as good in cognac and golden browns as my mum.
    I have almost exactly her haircolour, with natural gold and copper highlights over a dark chestnut brown (my hairdresser always gets a kick out of it), but I have darker eyes, with some gold-green in them as well and I am much lighter so I have hard time finding base makeup that is not too yellow or too pinkish and light enough for me (best mach are everyday minerals light neutral and ivory from the buff category).
    It could very well be I am a dark autumn (I look best in orange toned reds, I can wear black, but dark chocolate brown looks better and golden-toned, muted off-whites are much better for me than pure white), however, only brown makeup that suits me are eye-shadows.
    As far as lipsticks and glosses go, I can wear anything that is true or orange-based red (these colors make my skin glow), copper toned red (not too dark though) or a lilac-toned pink (clinique superbalm in lilac is great) or even a light pink. Similar is true for blushes; red, mauvish pinks and even very light neutral (rose dust from chanel) or cool pinks (pink swoon). On the other hand, warm and peach pink or beige just looks wrong on me (salmon pink on me looks very bad), and brownish blushes and bronzers look like somebody smeared some dirt on my face.

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Interesting, Nana. You have a good understanding of your coloring. Many of your observations remind me of Dark Autumn. There is an article coming in the next week or so, you’ll have to see if your coloring looks like the model’s.

  • "; ?> nana

    Thank you, I will.
    I am aware of the colors that suit me because when I put on something that clashes with my undertones it is really noticeable, and when you put on just the right shade you can really tell too, the skin just looks brighter and it glows.

  • "; ?> Jes

    Finally I managed to find and I bought Paprika by Clinique. Very good colour, not too bright at all, not too brown and not too light – that is even more important I think, because most of lipsticks that have mix of brown and pink in them are too light for me or too pink or just plain brown (plain brown lipsticks look very unnatural on me). I thought there will be problems only with Revlon (for some reason this brand is rare in our city), but I found out that Lancome sells different colours in USA and in Europe. Perhaps Couture Suede isn’t available at all in our country… I wonder is there any lipstick of a colour like the right bottom pattern? If it is not too dark (perhaps slightly lighter than the pattern) or too bright it would be perfect on me, almost like my natural lip colour! I had a lipstick like that, but it was a bit too dark. It seems to me they don’t make lipsticks like that nowdays. :-))

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      I can certainly look, but tell me some of the brands that are available to you?

  • "; ?> Jes

    Christine, I would be soooooo grateful!!! 🙂
    Brands that are available almost in every make-up store: Clinique, YSL, Dior, Chanel, Givenchy, Pupa, Bourjois, Sephora, Guerlain, L’Oreal, Maybelline, Estee Lauder. It is possible to find MAC (at least I know one store 🙂 ). Lancome is a very common brand too, but this difference in colours puzzled me.

  • "; ?> Christine Scaman

    Try out Chanel Rouge Allure in Amusing. And please tell me what you think of it.

  • "; ?> Jes

    Christine, thank you!!! Tomorrow i’ll try to try it! 🙂

  • "; ?> Jes

    Christine, I tried it… and I’m puzzled. Isn’t it too cool and too pink?.. I can’t say that my lips look very warm, but Amusing looked too contrasting with the skin on my hand (I’m reluctant to apply lipstick from testers directly to my lips), it even has something silvery in it I think… But there was an extremely beautiful colour next to it – it is called Fatale. Though I’m afraid it’s gonna look too dark on my lips – but it could be a lipstick for special occasions. I put i into my wishlist! 🙂

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Jes, you could look at Elizabeth Arden Woodrose Cream. Amusing is probably closer to a Dark Autumn color. I’m just not certain how dark you are.

  • "; ?> Jes

    I’m afraid it’s impossible to find Elizabeth Arden in our stores… 🙁 Are Dark Autumns cooler than True Autumns? It would be interesting to look at Dark Autumn make up colours. 🙂 I’m not sure what type of Autumn I am. I’m very in the middle – my hair is brown, it’s not too dark, but not light, I’m not very warm I think, but colours which are obviously warm make me look good, I have I think grey eyes (but very chameleon-like), I noticed that mixture of muted and bright coloures is good for me.
    Today I was in a make-up store, I wanted to try Amusing once more time and I noticed a lipstick also by Chanel that is called Rouge Coco Ballet Russe. I think it’s close to what see on my monitor. 🙂 I think it would look good, but rather dark on me.

  • "; ?> Tina

    Hi Christine

    Last weekend armed with your lipstick recommendations for True and Soft Autumn I went into makeup counters to try them. Like Jes though we only have reduced brands and colours in Australia so I didn’t have much luck finding many.

    But I did find Clinique Paprika. The sales lady said wow, not many people can wear this one but it looks great on you. To be sure I walked around and checked it out in store mirrors. It gives me a sophisticated look. I purchased it and have worn it all week and still happy with it. Problem is I’m a Soft Autumn so not sure if it should work. I think I might be smack bang in the middle of Soft & True Autumn, if that’s possible!

  • "; ?> Jes

    Tina, I think that Clinique Paprika gives sophisticated look too! 🙂
    Do you have Maybelline in Australia? Once I bought Maybelline’s lipstick Color Sensational Wooden brown (# 745). It has something in common with Paprika, but lighter. I think it’s the lightest colour that I can wear, it’s almost unnoticable on my lips, nude-looking (though my lips are of a different colour). I wonder what you would think about it.

  • "; ?> Tina

    Thanks Jes. We do have Maybelline in Aus. I’ll look out for Wooden Brown #745 (though we may not have all the same colours) when I’m next in a department store and let you know what I think of it.

  • "; ?> Ashley

    I’m thinking Jordana eyeshadow in Beige and Mary Kay eyeshadow in Vintage Gold. They’re both shimmer, though.

  • "; ?> Ashley

    Jordana Beige eyeshadow might work for the highlight, but it is a shimmer shade.

    What about Sassy Spice, from Clinique? Did you guys determine whether it was True or Dark Winter? I’ve been off Facebook since June, so I haven’t been following the page there.

  • "; ?> Ashley

    *blushes* Oops. Sassy Spice is a lipstick, I might add.

  • "; ?> MontyG

    True Autumn Red Lipstick Recommendation:

    MAC “So Chaud”. If you try it and please let me know how it works out for you.

  • "; ?> felicia

    What is a good mascara (color) for true autumns?

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Dark brown, to black-brown depending on the darkness of the person’s coloring. I’ve never seen one that looks good in black mascara.

  • "; ?> Eden L

    I received my True Autumn fan and it is a perfect match! I am really surprised to see there is no rust, brown, actual orange, and no red! Also no navy blue which I always thought autumns should wear.

    I’m glad because those colors always felt so heavy and dated on me. Dulled me out. I thought it was just because I’m fair. I am surprised (and pleased!) to see how light and bright the colors are. Many grays and taupes and tangerine-y, peach and coral colors! I always thought those were for spring. (I suppose rust and orange-red are in Dark Autumn?)

    Could you explain what the darker blue color is on the last swatch? It looks like a dark purple-y blue, not navy. What are the black alternatives for True Autumn?

    Thanks! I never tire of reading your insights.

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman


      That True Autumn fan continues to amaze and surprise me. Though True Summer is a Season heavy with misconceptions about the palette, True Autumn is even more so. It took me awhile to understand the browns, because you’re right, there is not plain brown. I still check with the Colours Books to be sure I’m accurate. If you compared your swatches to a Spring Book, you’d notice that yours are darker and browner. Darker rust and red-orange are in DA, right.
      The last swatch is dark purple, or blue-purple as you say. It is more intense than dark periwinkle, but probably a progression of that color. True Autumn, esp in fair women or those with lighter hair, is NOT a very dark Season. As you see, your greens and teals are not very blackened. Those with deeper chocolate hair can wear quite dark brown (or other) color, but not a whole body of it. I never like the makeup to get very dark either.
      Your black options, IMO, are slight, but not zero because it is hard to fully avoid that color. The problem with black is the coldness, and you are opposite. So a big block, even away from the face, clashes with who you are. Now, if the item were a jaguar print, with the overall effect of warm medium browns and oranges, but there were small spots of black or black buttons, that might be quite workable and unexpected.

  • "; ?> Lena

    Great TA lipstick ( might work for DA as well ) :

    L’Oreal’s Colour Riche in Cinnamon Toast

    This is a lovely brownish-red matte lipstick that is slightly darker than my natural lip color. Very flattering and at a good price!

  • "; ?> Lena

    Another True Autumn lipstick ( might work for other Autumns too ) :

    L’Oreal Colour Riche in Spiced Cider

    It’s yummy!

  • "; ?> Melissa

    After a marathon draping session I’ve come to the conclusion (to the best of my ability until I can get draped) that I’m a TA. With dark chocolate brown hair, fair freckled skin and amber/greenish eyes would it be a mistake to let my hair go gray naturally?

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      I believe that it is never a mistake to wear one’s Nature-selected hair colour. That word ‘naturally’ is synonymous with ‘beautifully’ in my eyes and opinion. I also find that women looks as good, and often better, in their silver as whatever they’ve been dyeing it. However, much depends on the woman. Some look beautiful with vibrant makeup but colour in the hair balances the overall better. Depends too on the hairstyle. In terms of Season, the true Warms may have a little more difficulty transitioning to silver, though I shouldn’t even type that. When I saw a little, some might interpret much more. I really do mean a tiny bit. It’s almost like trying out a new fun colour. The final effect of True Autumn in her silver hair is remarkable. Really, quite stunning. Powerful, unexpected, successful, rich. It’s quite something to see. I love when colour surprises us.

  • "; ?> Melissa Howard

    Thank you, Christine, for answering my question! I didn’t see that you had until just now. It has been “a little” challenging to let my hair gray naturally, but I didn’t succumb to the temptation to dye it–wearing TA colors helped–and the more it comes in the more I’m liking the warm gray highlights. And, I really like that the final effect will be “powerful, unexpected, successful and rich.” I’ll be looking forward to that!

  • "; ?> Olivia

    Years after the fact, a comment on MAC So Chaud: it’s a very bright orange-red, almost identical to MAC Lady Danger, not as bright as NARS Heat Wave (which is almost neon). I suspect So Chaud may suit True or Bright Spring better than True Autumn — as a very pale True Autumn (not draped, but still pretty confident) I notice I tend to gravitate to True Spring lipsticks, and then in photos they look a little too bright, too light or too “candy.”

    On the other hand if you are a TA with a tan or darker skintone you may be better able to pull off this kind of fiery orange-red.

  • "; ?> Corinne

    For some time I’ve been hesitating between TA and SA. Untill when I’ve tried Clinique Paprika.This lipstick color is amazing. It is the first lipstick that really is MY perfect lipstick.It’s stronger than my lip color, but on me it looks so natural, it brings life to the face, feels like it belongs there. The teeth look like pearls, the freckles look like sunny spots, hair gets more color. Everything falls in its place.

  • "; ?> Goldie

    You ask if the cheek/lip colors are too bright, and if it’s because the hair is too cool. I have golden “blondette” hair that I dye copper, neither of which are light or cool… But I have pale yellowish skin. In what world could someone with pale skin wear those colors as blush on an average day? I can look at all those colors and think to myself if they were mixed in with my foundation to make them a little lighter and duller they’d be perfect, but I’d look like a clown with those deep bright colors on my cheeks and I’d never put the pupley one on my lips either.
    However, the eye colors are perfect, especially the eyeliner; I look dead and squinty eyed in black mascara and eyeliner.
    And the lipsticks you reccomend? Clinique Paprika, Lancome Couture Suede, and Revlon Sandalwood Beige? I love all of them and they all look great on me (Lancome couture suede is a litter dark but with gloss over it, it’s really cute.)
    When I used to buy bright red lipstick, I’d be disappointed how the eye was immediately drawn to it and it looked foreign on my face. However I find that if a color looks terracotta in the tube, it blends well with my coloring while still looking like I’m wearing red lipstick which is perfect.

  • "; ?> Melina

    I’m not sure if I’m True or Dark Autumn, but I was just trying to find brown mascara, as it’s said to be better for Autumns than black; and that’s proving hard enough to drive you into despair – black just seems to be *the* default mascara colour nowadays, usually the only shade available. Often the product doesn’t even state the colour (i.e. black), just its other qualities, so very default it is! And the most common alternative to black is blackest black, it seems 😉 Sometimes you can find brown-black, so I guess that’s good enough. Brown mascara just seems very, very unpopular, I wonder why?

  • "; ?> Shawna

    It’s unconfirmed by PCA but I am probably a True Autumn. It was the last type of colouring I tried after thinking it was the least likely and it was WOW. I had no idea I could look so amazing in just the right orange. Most makeup recs for True Autumn are great for me but Revlon Sandalwood beige lipstick is like a nude on me in the worst way. It pretty much erases my lips by being far too close to the colour of my face. Abstract Orange, Toast of New York are fantastic. The pinkest I can go is Revlon’s Rose Velvet which is sort of a pinkish terra cotta colour on me.

  • "; ?> Shawna

    Melina, I have hunted for brown mascara to no avail as well. It makes it all the more challenging when there are other requirements involved. I am using L’Oreal Voluminous waterproof mascara because I like that it’s not crunchy or stiff and doesn’t have added fibres. I buy it in black-brown and I think it looks quite natural on me. Christine said somewhere that the colour of black coffee is the darkest colour in the True Autumn palette and I think that black-brown mascara is in keeping with that.

  • "; ?> Melina

    Shawna, it was just like that for me, too, as you described: “It was the last type of colouring I tried after thinking it was the least likely and it was WOW. I had no idea I could look so amazing in just the right orange” 😉

    And yes, black-brown is sure easier to find than mere brown 🙂 And I’ve been hunting Revlon Sandalwood beige for a while now (I’m in Europe and can only get it on ebay), but if it really is that light, I may not bother… But I guess it’s better to try for myself anyway 🙂 Most True Autumn lipstick recs are too brown for me, but the more orange-y ones are great. And I can go pretty pink, provided it’s a warm pink, actually I used to love pink lipstick before I knew I was Autumn… 😉 Though I’ve now gone a bit off it.

  • "; ?> Melina

    Hmm, actually, now reading back what I wrote earlier – most Autumn lipsticks are too brown for me, I suit better oranges and can do warm pinks as well… Doesn’t this actually sound more like Spring than Autumn…? I’m so confused now, also as I’ve lately realized transparent makeup finishes suit me much better than opaque, at least what comes to lipsticks and nail polishes, and don’t really do or like contouring & bronzer (Autumn staples)… Oh mine. I’ve been so sure I’m an Autumn – the glowing skin & eyes with pumpkin, the golden yellow & moss!! 😉 Trying now to check whether (True) Spring has any colours close to those… Though I do feel Spring colours are mostly too bright for me.

  • "; ?> Melina

    Just to add, I know this isn’t a “figure your season” facebook group, so I’m sorry, but the above was just an expression of confusion 😉 And I must admit like the atmosphere on this site, and other “normal” websites, more than facebook…

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