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Valeria Is A Dark Autumn

Valeria Is A Dark Autumn

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Valeria had a Personal Colour Analysis and makeup selection/application performed by Maytee Garza. Maytee is the owner of Reveal Style Consultancy, located in Morristown, New Jersey. I thank Maytee for allowing me to use the results of this long-awaited PCA. Thank you to Maytee and Valeria for permission to reproduce the photographs. (Photos were taken in a mirror, if you notice a slight background texture).

Valeria Dark Autumn colour

If Dark Autumn announces that they are going to build a boat in the garage, move the car out. With Autumn energy and quiet determination, and Winter opulent appearance, these people are predestined to create goals and reach them. The rest of the world knows enough to get out of the way.

Valeria saw herself as a Soft Summer for a long time. A restlessness with that conclusion caused her to visit Maytee. As she says, “the experience is amazing and traumatic but I could not argue with what I saw in the mirror.”

In our mirrors, with the right colours, you will see yourself look better than you ever have.

Valeria personal colour analysis

In 12 Season Colour Analysis, this person is essentially an Autumn, with a daub of Winter. The Autumn palette is respected, in that the colours are mostly warm and muted. Unlike True Autumn, these are dark colours. Even the light colours are darker than anyone else.

The mystery in the darkness, that I do not perceive in the other Seasons, even Dark Winter, seems at odds with the comfortable warmth. Neutral Seasons are always a blend of two energies that seem unlikely, even opposite at times.

Sensible and straightforward as all Autumns, but direct in speech, and quick to absorb change with good evidence, they speak honestly and are neither threatened or defensive about new ideas. The person may demonstrate more of Winter reserve, or more of Autumn’s passive and natural way, but there is always an element of fire.

Valeria dark autumn colour analysis


Dark Autumn can look very Winter-like, perhaps because we are better at perceiving darkness accurately than we are warmth or saturation of colour. The hair colour can be a most interesting bronzed black, or range from medium brown to chestnut, mahogany, and sometimes blue-black in persons of ethnicity.

Avoid a cool red or purple highlight or rinse. Though a Neutral Season, with both coolness and warmth in the skin, this is predominantly still warm skin. Auburn is better.

Avoid blonde highlights. They look like frosting the hair with gray. The whole impression should be of luxuriant darkness. Highlights of any sort can break up the full-on, sensational dark force of this look.

Use a laminate to heighten the shine.

My hair color visual for Dark Autumn is a coffee bean. Can you feel the bronzed depth emanate even more from within the eye? The synergistic power, where the whole is so much more than the parts, roots you to the spot. Pick the lighter or darker roasts, choose the shade on the bean that matches the intensity of your look, and enjoy the rich bronzed browns. Even in the almost-black haired people, there is a bronzed quality to the hair colour. Find the colourist who can do that.

Valeria dark autumn drapes

The Superlative Dark Autumn

…needs time to get comfortable wearing colours that should strike and excite the senses. The darkness mixed with the heat may evoke the distinct feeling of a controlled furnace.

Like the sensation of hot sauce in your mouth, this warmth is peppery, strong, and undeniable. Valeria’s most telling comment, coming from a Soft Summer self-image, “I nearly fainted when I saw the turmeric.”

With Dark Autumn, we have heat to contend with, a temporary containment, a pressure valve that will not hold forever.

Valeria yellow drape colour analysis

…can wear black because they can balance the darkness, but cannot fully balance the coolness. Wear gold or bronze jewelry instead of silver. Add flame colors, hot metallics, rich neutrals (from brown sugar to eggplant), and hot spice colours.

…wears texture and weight well, starting with tweed or corduroy, including velvet, leather, suede, metallic. Autumn strength and Winter wealth.

…adds theater, because it looks like tension and feels like excitement.

…gives a burnished impression. The Dark Autumn palette is the feeling of dealing with food that is almost burnt. Your attention is high, your movements are urgent while you ignore everything else. Red is already here now. Black is almost upon us. Something is about to happen.  A reaction is required, almost demanded. There are only moments left till Winter and black’s coolness move in. We need a moment to catch our breath, dab the sweat, and calm down.

…can wear many looks. Winter classic, gypsy fortune-teller, Aztec priestess, military command, jungle exotic, Middle Eastern bazaar, Spice Island queen, are all so good and so seldom played up enough. These are your best skin, your youngest face, your slimmest body. So much more than appearance, here we actually react to colour as flavour. Colour invokes all five senses.

Personal colour analysis

…looks 10 years older in white. Every line is deeper. The gold in the skin has turned to gray ash. In Summer light pastels, the skin looks like cement, and that is not just me being descriptive. The skin looks like gray, rock-solid stone.

…transitions to silver in the hair well. It heightens the drama. They look even better in the grays and the cooler choices in their Personal Colour palette.

Red drape colour analysis

…strives for a bronze glow in makeup, though not necessarily through use of bronzer. When you know your Season, you know your cosmetic colours. In right makeup, the colours diffuse away into your skin because they are already there. The ultimate in polish and sophistication, perfect balance, this is your best and healthiest (healthy=young) no makeup look.

This makeup is so gorgeous, I asked Valeria for the products used:
Maytee matched my foundation (not sure what brand she used but she mixed several for the right shade). Then she applied a sheer brightening powder on my cheekbones and if I’m not mistaken, a brownish/reddish/peach-ish blush, just a touch. On the eyes, she used: all over the lid, Navajo from Bobbi Brown; on the lid, Ash by BB, and in the crease, Hot Stone, a neutral matte brown, by BB. She then lined my eyes with BB’s Espresso eye shadow (especially good liner color on Dark Autumn) and used black mascara. On the lips, she used the Whirl pencil by MAC (its a mauve brown shade the same as my own lip color) and Givenchy Gloss Interdit in Coral Frenzy.
In Valeria’s Words
My experience with PCA was wonderful. The process itself was great fun. However, anyone going into it with preconceptions: be prepared to have them shattered. Be prepared to trust your analyst, trust their training and years of experience, and be prepared to let go of how you used to see yourself. In this sense, PCA can lead to some profound revelations. For me personally, it was about more than just color and style. PCA gave me the answer I’ve been searching for, and with it, it gave me confidence and brought me to a new level of self awareness. It both empowers and releases. It also inspires.

Seeing yourself the way you were intended to be, being at your best and most beautiful, is a wonderful thing. Everyone should get the chance to experience it. There is nothing like it.
Valeria is a dark autumn




21 Thoughts on Valeria Is A Dark Autumn

  • "; ?> Trisha (from Enghand)

    Wow, what an absolutely wonderful description and analysis of Dark Autumn. I would say your comments on Valeria are spot on, and she looks fantastic in her correct colours too. I was diagnosed as a Dark Autumn last year and am adapting to these new colours gradually. Bronze, I have found is wonderful as a jewellery colour if you can find it. I have never read such a poetic description of colour before, love the way you describe the whole person and not just their colouring. You have made me feel quite special as well for being in this group (althoug we’re all special of course as individuals, whatever group we fall into). I teach textiles and I always teach my students, as I was taught as Art College, that there is a relationship between someone’s colouring and their personality and likes and dislikes, as well as the colours they chose to work with. Thanks for a truely beautiful piece of writing.

  • "; ?> itari

    Yay! I think I saw Valeria on Funny thing that many people voted Winter. She looks radiant and intense in Dark Autumn drapes.

    I was told many times that I’m an Autumn. Dark hair, freckles, bright green flecks seen in my irises. And finally, the “Aztec sun” eye pattern. However, the colours felt wrong. Very wrong. I’m sure I can’t wear any of Valeria’s colours. I look washed out and sallow in warm, muted tones. I suspect Winter, or maybe Summer 😉

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman


      You know, Bright Springs can make color analysts nervous because of their superficial resemblance to Autumns, and yet hopeless intolerance for the Autumn colors.

  • "; ?> Jo


    Christine, could you please tell me (if you know), what the name of the colour of the drape in the first picture is? That is the closest I have seen to the natural colour of my flush – but I have never had a name to call it.

    Valeria’s makeup is absolutely gorgeous… the eyes are fantastic. An already beautiful woman made intensely alive. And I am fascinated by the lipstick. My immediate reaction was that it was too soft, too pale and frankly a little bland. Then I realised that it did not interfere – at all – with any of the drapes. Most impressive. I wonder if I can find it over here in the UK…?

    Oh, and on the subject of lipstick, a while back, you recommended Autumn by Estee Lauder as a good shade for Dark Autumns. It is discontinued in the UK, so the only place my seach found it was eBay. What a marvellous colour! I just came back from 8 days living out of a suitcase, and wore only that shade (with brown, purple, blue, cream and some black clothing). Your various makeup recommendations meant that I was able to travel with that one lipstick and a makeup bag just three inches by four.

    Of course, now that I know that EL’s Autumn is discontinued, I am wondering whether to buy up the entire eBay stock…


    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Hi, Jo,

      That first drape is precisely what you say – the ultimate natural lip/cheek color of the Dark Autumn. The name of it – I don’t exactly know because Sci\ART doesn’t give each color a name. Cinnabar? Bronzed rose?

      On the Facebook club, we discussed that lip color. My reaction was the same as yours, that it’s a bit light. Now, is that because the hair is light. Even if I flip the hair to the mid-range color of a coffee bean, I still feel pretty good about the lip. Perhaps it’s that browns are so forgiving on Autumns, where the rest of us look a bit flat. Perhaps the mauve in the liner changed the lip color in a good way.

  • "; ?> Lucretia

    Well, this is a good demonstration of how little credit is to be given to color analysis done through photos, I think. I myself got “analysed” at, resulting in a cool summer which I definitely am not, because I get asked what’s wrong with me anytime I wear pastels near my face. Valeria being analysed as a soft summer and turning out to be a dark autumn further validates the point. She looks radiant in all these drapes and this is clearly her season, which, in backsight, seems quite obvious: such intensity and warmth cannot be overlooked.

  • "; ?> Adriane

    I am still in awe at how beautiful and in harmony Valeria and her colors look together. 🙂 In terms of her lip color, and in terms of lip colors for all of the seasons…what does it mean when a lip color appears to wash the complexion out without the addition of eye makeup? Does it suggest that the color is generally slightly off, in some way, or perhaps too weak? Should one aim for a lip color which is vital enough to give the face some life without the addition of masc, e/l, and so forth? I know that eye/lip color balance is important, but I am just wondering if this scenario suggests anything about the basic rightness/wrongness of the shade or intensity. Thanks!

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      The difficulty for me with photos is that I can be right some of the time. I can usually get it down to the last 2 Seasons, but not always. There is just so much variation even within 1 Season.

      No, I don’t make any connections there Adriane. As soon as we artificially enhance something, it’s hard for everything else to compete. Unless the lipstick is a sheer flesh-tone, I think you’d see the effect you describe across the board. Rather like wearing mascara and nothing else.

  • "; ?> Jo

    Hi Adriane,

    Your comment got me thinking. My makeup has evolved so much over the years, and a lot of the changes I have made have been due to the slow realisation that I need a lot of pigment – in the right places. Christine always says that if you pick colours that exist in you, it is surprising how deep you can take those colours. I always thought that fair skin meant that I shouldn’t put too much colour on – it would look like crude paint. Experience, a developing critical eye, colour analysis and discussions like these have slowly led me to change my mind.

    My natural colouring is fair skin, very pale lips, short eyelashes in mid brown and no natural cheek colour. Without harmoniously balancing lips, cheeks and eyes, my face is a fairly featureless expanse. The gravatar pic I use is 6 years old now, from a time when I thought a whisk of tinted moisturiser, a nude lipstick and soft smudge of eyeliner and mascara was enough.

    Nowadays I know soooooo much better. I use deeper lipstick to balance the intensity of my hair (I may be a dark autumn, but I am also fairly high contrast for a DA, brown and cream rather than HIGH contrast black and white of a Winter). I use blusher now, a very light sweep of an intense colour, and my eyeliner and brows balance my hair.

    When I see myself reflected in shop windows I no longer see a pale blob of a face, instead I see a face with features. Nothing sticks out – no garish lips or clown like cheeks, just real features. But if I leave the eyeliner off, or forget to refresh my lipstick, the blandness creeps back.

    Maybe I should get another pic done. Grin.

    Contrast has such a huge part to play in colour analysis (and it is something that I didn’t even realise mattered until recently). I guess the low contrast people are probably the ones who do better without makeup. The high contrasts, unless they have naturally striking eyebrows, lashes and the intensly pigmented lips of youth are going to need a bit of makeup help…

  • "; ?> luana

    Valeria you look wonderful with your new colors!The gold fabric and green one are really stunning on you! 🙂

  • "; ?> Cat Naughton


    Atre are all the fabrics that Valerie is swathed in – in the pics on this page – suitable for adark autumn?

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Yes, they’re all DA drapes. If you saw them IRL, some would seem different to you. Cameras always change things and these images are being reflected in a mirror.

  • "; ?> Nicki

    Hi, I’ve read a couple of entries regarding autumn colouring on your blog and in each one you describe dark colours/ black as severe and ageing. This is your opinion of course but I’d like to know why you think dark eyebrows are ageing? I know many women with naturally dark eyebrows who look great and do not look aged. I have natural black eyebrows and a lovely natural shape which I constantly get compliments on. I personally would rather have full dark brows than thin and/ or sparse light coloured brows. And I think the majority of polished well groomed women out there would agree. Why else would there be women from various racial/ ethnic backgrounds tinting or penciling in their eyebrows? Audrey Hepburn, Jennifer Connelly, Rachel Weisz, Camilla Belle and Brooke Shields spring to mind when I think of dark eyebrows. And Megan Fox is one celebrity that I can think of that looks better off with her full (even though they’re fake) black eyebrows than her old mousy brown eyebrows which were terribly thin and sparse.

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Glad you brought this up, but you answered your own Q. I don’t think NATURAL dark or black brows are ageing, I think they’re simply stunningly beautiful. On any colouring.
      Nature will never give you colour anywhere that is less than perfect. You’re born colour-coded to match, hair, skin, eyes, veins, tans, teeth, everything. What I think is ageing is when brows or hair are darkened. That looks severe and older and the viewer can pick it out a mile away.
      The opposite is true too. Some dark Seasons have naturally light brows, almost invisible. And that looks awesome and should be left alone. Define them with a dark blonde pencil a little, but don’t paint them in to match your hair.

  • "; ?> Emma

    What a beautiful, poetic turn of phrase you have. This was a pure delight to read. I wish I lived in America – I am in Melbourne, Australia – I would pick up the phone and book an appointment with you immediately. How clever you are, what a gift you have.

  • "; ?> Chana

    I was analyzed by Katherine S. yesterday, and found out I am a Dark Autumn. On my own, I thought I would be any other season than that one! Most people told me I was some kind of winter. I was analyzed in the 80’s as a summer, but I had an autumn eye and she wasn’t quite sure. The baby pink and blue drapes then made me sad. Now I am allowing my eyes and understanding to start embracing the DA colors. It’s an adventure. I love this post. It helps.

  • "; ?> Diana

    So,if you have medium brown hair color,light brown eyes and medium light skin tone,you are definitely a “muted autumn” and should wear only muted colors,not bright because they delete your face.

    • "; ?> Christine Scaman

      Season cannot be known definitely from verbal descriptions, Diana. There is no single appearance for every person within any Season. True Autumns can have blue, green, hazel, or brown eyes. They may be light beige in complexion or look like Beyonce. They may have a variety of hair colours. If a person is known by draping to be a True Autumn, their palette is fairly muted but not as much as a Soft Autumn’s would be.

  • "; ?> Sarah

    I am a draped True Autumn with very pale porcelain skin (it looks to have cool/pink tone), green eyes, and light brown hair. The warm drapes brought out a warmth in my skin that is not normally visible otherwise to my eye. Can very fair Autumns experience this effect, or would it indicate I may be in the wrong season?

  • "; ?> m.

    Sarah – I think everything is possible :). To me it’s very likely Sophie Ellis-Bextor can be an example of True Autumn with porcelain skin. She is labelled as Bright Season but I think bright colors overwhelm her unless this is not a photoshoot. Warm muted colors look very natural on her instead.

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