Pure, primary, and pristine, True Winter is beautiful in its stark contrasts and clear hues. While Bright Winter is technically brighter (shocking), I feel like TW is the “cleanest” of the seasons in terms of its colors. The blackest blacks and whitest whites belong to TW, making it sharply defined and gorgeously crisp. This season does bright pops of color on a monochromatic background so well – imagine a black suit, white shirt, and cardinal red tie. It’s classic, it’s sharp, and it’s in a league all its own.
Things that are easy
- Black and White
- This classic combo makes TW very easy to jump into post draping. These colors are simply everywhere, meaning it doesn’t take a whole lot of effort to begin to shift one’s closet over to a TW palette (because, let’s be real, most people have a fair amount of black in their closet anyway). In fact, I feel like I’m sometimes encouraging my TW clients to stay away from black and white, just because there are so many other amazing colors for them out there! It’s easy, and even necessary in the beginning, to fill your closet with black and white, but I strongly encourage TWs to hold out for color if it’s possible.
- Niche clothing
- People in this season have a quite easy time finding strong fabrics that hold color well. Business attire is practically a breeze for the TW, since many of the colors complement black. Formal wear, as well, is usually rather easy to find in TW shades because of the sumptuous fabrics used to make them. On the more casual side, I’m all about the athleisure trend, and I’ve seen quite a bit of TW in this niche, since again, black is common. If it’s a piece that serves a distinct purpose, it’s safe to assume it will be available in a TW color.
- For those who wear makeup, cool plum and pink lipsticks are everywhere, making one piece of the cosmetic puzzle a bit simpler. I really love Insolent Plum by Estee Lauder on a TW. Cooler toned “blendables” (eyeshadow, blush, highlighter, etc.) are slightly rarer than warmer versions, but enough of them are on the market to make switching to a more TW aesthetic doable.
Things that are hard
- These can be tricky (I mean neutrals other than black and white, of course). Browns must be very deep, dark, and cool, similar to black coffee, and grays must be flat, non-heathered, and can’t have a hint of green or beige. TW navy exists, but is often too soft to work well with the rest of the palette.
- Light Colors
- TW’s icy shades are very difficult to find, simply because they need to be so light and clear to not be considered pastel. Even those light colors that are not considered icy are more difficult to find, as designers seem to favor the stronger, more saturated end of the TW palette. TWs have to be careful not to go too muted when choosing lighter colors, since these will veer more into True Summer and won’t work quite as well.
- “Natural” makeup
- This season doesn’t need makeup more than any other (as I discussed here), but when it comes to a “no makeup” look, it can be difficult to find things that read as subtle while staying cool and strong enough for the TW’s coloring.
There’s this theory that TW is “harsh,” which I wholeheartedly disagree with. It’s a brighter palette, but on a TW, it reads as perfectly at home. The TW person’s coloring is so gorgeously strong that it can handle the sharp contrast of a bold pink paired with a deep midnight blue without competing with it. That’s the beauty of color analysis – because the colors work with your body, they don’t read as bold or soft, they’re just pleasing to the eye. It’s not “Wow, he has a bright red shirt on!” It’s “Wow, he looks great in that shirt!”
My favorite shade
It’s got to be the TW lemon yellow. Yellow is a very polarizing color, people either love it or they hate it. I am fully on team LOVE, because when a TW wears it, it truly turns heads. Nobody pulls off this color like True Winters!
(My cat Bertram is a True Winter, and a rather handsome one at that)
Next month: Bright Winter
All photos credited to Colorgeek Studio, LLC unless otherwise noted. Photos are meant to evoke the feelings associated with each season, and are not guaranteed for seasonal accuracy due to variations in lighting and screen resolution.