Tips on Choosing the Best Hair Color for You

By Renee Gerber , last updated October 26, 2011

Many women enjoy dyeing their hair a different color. In many instances, this is because they have grays and want to conceal them, but this is not always the case. Some women simply have a love for a hair color that is different than what they were born with and adopt a new one. When you are new to changing the color of your hair, however, you may initially be confused about which one to choose. You probably know which color you generally want, but finding the right shade can be a bit trickier. You can choose the right hair color by keeping a few great tips in mind.

The first thing you will have to do when trying to determine your new hair color is to figure out from which skin tone category you belong. There are two types of these categories, cool and warm. Each person falls under a specific category that is based not only on your skin itself but on a combination of that, your eye color and of course, the natural color of your hair. To determine whether you fall under the cool or warm hair tone category, take your eye color into consideration first. Individuals who have very dark brown, dark blue or grayish blue or hazel eyes fall under the cool category. Hair colors that are considered cool are black, dark brown, dishwater blonde, salt and pepper or white and certain shades of medium brown hair, especially those that are ash or golden in tint. Finally, a "cool" skin tone is one that is olive, pale with no color in the cheeks or with pinkish tones. Cooler tones generally do not have red hints, whether in the hair or skin color.
Warm skin tones are those that have a much larger prevalence of red within. These include brown with pink undertones, golden undertones, a peach or golden pale complexion or skin colors that are reddish in general or in individuals with freckles. Eye color is usually a hazel with gold flecks, green, blue-green or golden brown. The hair colors that are considered warm in tone are brown with reddish or gold highlights, red, strawberry blonde, golden blonde and of course, red.
People who have a cool skin tone should avoid reddish hair colors and those that are particularly bright, such as gold or bronze. When you fall under the cool category but select a hair color that is considered warm, it will wash you out and make you look sallow. Opt for a great shade of ash blonde, honey blonde or brown, platinum, black or dark brown without a reddish tint. On the flip side, individuals with warm skin tones should stay away from any hair coloring that contains an ash or bluish tint, as this will make your natural tone appear washed out. Warm toned people will benefit far more from red tones such as auburn and copper, golden blonde and chestnut brown or reddish brown in their hair. These shades will bring out the rich, vibrant natural warm tones from your skin and nicely complement them.
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