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

Picture a moonless night sky, a field of hot pink flowers against a backdrop of snow fields or a bare forest. This is true winter.

Also referred to as cool winter, this colour palette sits in between bright winter and dark winter on the seasonal flow chart, and is characterised by its frosty coolness and bright contrast.

How to tell if you're true winter.

If you look in the mirror and notice blue undertones dominate your skin, hair and eyes, your features have a brilliant and clear appearance, you may fall into the true winter category.

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

Cool hue: Blue undertones dominate the palette so even if you choose a yellow (the warmest colour), it will still be on the cooler side and have blue undertones. 

Medium-dark value: The palette ranges from the lightest value on the scale (true white) to the darkest (true black). However, more colours in the palette lean towards the darker side because blue - the dominant undertone of this palette - is classified as medium-dark. 

Medium-bright chroma: The colours are particularly high in chroma, which means they are saturated, bright and vibrant. There is a stark contrast between features. 

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What is true winter's colour palette?

True winter's best colours include:

  • Cool-toned neutrals: Black, true white and cool greys 

  • Cool pastels: Mint green, lavender, icy pink and frosty blue

  • Bright and clear hues: Electric blue, hot pink and true red

  • Deep and bold colours: Navy or royal blue, emerald green and deep purple

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

  • Warm-toned yellows, oranges, browns and beiges 

  • Warm earth tones of terracotta

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

Base colour: Navy or grey

Light neutral: True white or silver

Dark neutral: Charcoal or black  

Main colour: Baby blue or icy pastel pink

Accent colours: Cobalt blue or bright red


Celebrities with a true winter colour palette.

Some notable people with a dark autumn colour palette include Selena Gomez, Kendall Jenner, Katy Perry, Constance Wu, Lily Collins, Anne Hathaway, Jada Pinkett Smith, Liv Tyler and Zooey Deschanel. These individuals are often associated with this colour palette because of their high contrast and cool features. Of course, this is only a guide and their colour palettes will change depending on their styling choices. 

Styling tips for true winter.

Take advantage of monochromatic looks: If you want to create a seriously striking outfit, layer different shades from your colour palette for a monochromatic ensemble. For example, a complete outfit in shades of denim blue is chic and flattering. (ICYMI, head-to-toe denim has made a huge comeback in 2024).

Contrast with neutrals: To balance the intensity of your vibrant colours, add neutral shades like pure white, navy and charcoal. These hues will also add a dose of sophistication to your overall style. 

Get creative with textures: Go all out with luxurious fabrics like velvet, silk or cashmere to elevate your look. These rich textiles pair perfectly with your cool colour palette. 


Accessories are your friend: Jewellery in silver, white gold and platinum will beautifully complement your cool, vivid tones. Lucky for you, clear diamonds are also your best friend, as well as deep blue sapphires and intense green emeralds. On top of jewellery, other accessories you can play with include vibrant scarves in cool hues or metallic clutches. 

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Beauty tips for true winter.

Base: Matte and pink-based foundations and concealer work best for a true winter palette. 

Eyes: Black mascara and eyeliner are your friends. Your eyeshadow base could be an icy pink or a frosty blue, which can then be layered with accent colours like charcoal, navy, purple or teal. 

Blush: Avoid warm tones like coral and bronze cheeks and instead, look towards cool soft and dark pinks. 

Lips: Instead of a nude or other light-coloured lip colour (which will diminish your natural contrast), opt for a natural lip in mauve, pink or rose. For a bold lip, choose deep red or plum. 

Final thoughts on true winter.

Wondering if you're a true winter? If wearing cool, vivid and intense hues work with your natural colouring and enhance your features, you might fall into this colour palette. Of course, this shouldn’t deter you from wearing colours you love but aren't categorised as true 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 true winter: bright winter and dark winter. 

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