A complete styling guide if you're a dark winter.

Picture a pitch-black winter's night sky or the cool, bright moon shining down on a foggy forest. This is true winter. 

Also referred to as deep winter, this colour palette sits between dark autumn and true winter on the seasonal flow chart and is characterised by its incredibly dark and cool hues. 

How to tell if you're dark winter.

Dark winter is categorised as the following: medium-cool hue, dark value and medium-bright chroma. 

Medium-cool hue: The colours lean towards the cool end of the scale but are not extremely cool. This means the only time you'll see yellow (the warmest colour) would be if they have a tint of blue. Of course, natural cool greys and blues dominate this palette. 

Dark value: While some of the colours are light (like white and icy pastels), dark hues dominate this season’s palette to create that much-needed contrast. 

Medium-bright chroma: The colours are more saturated and bright as opposed to being mellow. This can still be achieved with the dark colours that influence the season's palette. 

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Video via Mamamia.

What is dark winter's colour palette?

Dark winter's best colours include: 

  • Cool neutrals: Charcoal grey, navy blue and true black. 

  • Clear hues: Cobalt blue, magenta, bright greens like teal. 

  • Rich, saturated tones: Emerald green, ruby red, sapphire blue and violet. 

On the flip side, the colours to avoid if you're dark winter include: 

  • Warm tones: Earthy browns, golden yellows, orange, dusty rose and soft peach.

  • Pale colours: Faded pastel blues, pinks, greens, yellows and greys. 

Building a dark winter colour palette is an easy process when you focus on this season's best colours. Here's an example of what a dark winter's colour palette might look like: 

Base colour: True black

Light neutral: Charcoal grey

Dark neutral: Navy blue

Main colour: Emerald green

Accent colours: Ruby red, violet or sapphire blue 


Celebrities with a dark winter colour palette.

Some notable people with a dark winter colour palette include Salma Hayek, Sandra Bullock, Rose Byrne, Gal Gadot, Gemma Chan, Demi Moore, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Winona Ryder, Mila Kunis, Lucy Liu, Mindy Kaling, Priyanka Chopra Jones, Keira Knightley, Kim Kardashian and Jenna Ortega. Of course, this is only a guide and their colour palettes will change depending on their styling choices. 

Styling tips for dark winter.

Contrast with neutrals: Don't underestimate the power of cool neutrals like charcoal grey, navy blue and black. These subtly powerful shades act as a sophisticated backdrop to your pops of accent colours like ruby red, emerald green and sapphire blue (these can be in the form of clothing or jewellery). 

Invest in statement outerwear: During the cooler months, don't leave the house without throwing on a tailored coat or a classic trench coat in a bold colour. This single piece of clothing can instantly elevate your look and serve as the focal point of your outfit. 

Tailored silhouettes will do wonders: You are a refined, chic and elegant individual. That's why tailored silhouettes and structured clothing like blazers, fitted trousers and pencil skirts will suit your refined look. 

Play with prints and textures: Opt for bold prints like geometric patterns and abstract designs in rich colours that complement your dark winter colour palette. Additionally, luxurious textiles like velvet, satin or silk will add depth and dimension to your outfits and can further enhance the richness of your aesthetic. 


Go bold with accessories (especially metallics): If your style is more classic, silver jewellery, shoes and handbags will go a long way. Otherwise, if you're after a more modern and edgy look, metallic accessories are sure to impress you — and everyone around. 

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Beauty tips for dark winter.

Base: Opt for matte foundation and concealer in shades that match your cool undertones. 

Eyes: A classic black or dark brown eyeliner will define your eyes (bonus points if you can draw a winged eye). When it comes to eyeshadows, experiment with rich shades like navy blue, emerald green, deep plum or smokey grey. 

Blush: Avoid warm-toned blushes that may clash with your palette and instead, choose cool-toned blush shades like berry, mauve or deep rose. 

Lipstick: A simple way to add a pop of colour to your appearance is with a dramatic lip in deep red, burgundy, plum or berry. Satin, glossy and matte lipstick finishes can all work for a dark winter. 

Final thoughts on dark winter.

Wondering if you're a dark winter? If cool, dark and vivid colours are what complement your features, you might fall into this colour palette. Of course, this shouldn't deter you from wearing colours you love but aren’t classified as dark winter. After all, your unique colour palette should naturally uplift your appearance and confidence. 


If you're looking to expand your palette, you can also consider borrowing colours from the sister seasons of dark winter: dark autumn and true winter. 

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