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Makeup Basics-- Red Heads

31 March 2011
It has taken me two hours to prepare today's post but it has been so worth it. Searching for cosmetics to help you ladies--which is difficult because I know mostly Mac products since I worked for them for the last 6 years--is very rewarding. In fact I cannot wait to try some new products out.

Today, I am starting a series on Makeup Basics for all skin tones and eventually I will go into eye color as well.  So once or twice a week I will do a post on a different skin tone--including hair color for women of European descent--and what colors look great with each skin tone (including asian, s. asian, east and west africa, bi/multiracial and latinos), and how to pick out colors by utilizing the color wheel .


In most cases, we do not need the color wheel to help us determine what colors go great with our skin or hair or eyes. Our instincts already pick up on this automatically. Think about it, when you're clothes shopping and you pick out two purple blouses. One has a cool undertone to it--its more blue than red-- and another that has a more warm undertone and is more red than blue. You have cool undertones--your skin is more olive. When you try the tops on, one looks more flattering on your skin than the other. Through these posts, I plan to make you more aware of what you already know.

I decided to begin these posts with redheads. Red, carrot-top, ginger, red-headed step child and the proverbial question, "are redheads better?" Needless to say, redheads are my favorite the world over--I am a bit biased since I am a natural "redhead" myself. Or as we say in Houston, 'sandy.'  Not to mention redheads are so rare. I wish more women dyed their hair--although I am anti-chemically enhancing your hair--red. 

There are three types of red heads, or more precisely, redheads come in three different skin tones; olive/gold (cool), pink (warm), or combo (medium). 

Redheads with gold undertones tend to have an olive complexion like actress Miranda Otto. Usually, we associate gold with warm colors but when we are referring to skin undertones it is used to describe people with cool undertones or 'olive/green' skin. If you fall under this category you will want to stay away from other cool colors such as certain blues, purples, greens, browns and gold. You need to choose colors from these families of colors that are warm--that have more red or orange to them than blue or yellow. The warm colors combined with the warmness of your hair color--cuz let's face it redhead actually means orange-head--to counterbalance the coolness of your skin tone so that you do not look sallow or sea-sick. *


Redheads with warm undertones--or in this case pink undertones--are like the actress Christina Hendricks. You do not have to be fair skinned to have pink undertones, it is not about how light or dark you are but about what color shines through your complexion. If you fall under this category, then you will want to use colors that have a more cool tone to them--colors that are more yellow or blue in tone. Again, this is to counterbalance the warmness in your skin-tone.*


Then there are your combination skin tone redheads. You girls used to confuse me when I was a baby make-up artist. In fact, I fall under this category however because I have darker skin and have more yellow than red I must follow the color rules of someone with olive undertones. Another actress with this same skin tone is Julianne Moore. Julianne technically has pink undertones but because she has freckles--which are usually a brownish-yellow color--this makes her a combo skin-tone.

Usually, when you are combination you have to be very aware of which tone shows more in your skin and in most cases the tone changes from one to the other during the warmer months. In any case, I would suggest that you use warmer colors, they play up those beautiful freckles and counter balances the olive in your skin. You can also choose colors that fall in the middle, or colors that have both cool and warm tones. What you say? How can you do that? It is like buying a blue toned pink lipstick that has specks of gold or copper in it. Also, I usually use foundation with olive undertones on this skin type. *

I have created four different color boards for the first two skin tones. Remember if you fall under the combo-skin tone, you would follow the chart for someone with olive skin. 

Bold Lip for Red head with Pink Undertones


1. Omega eye shadow (for the brows), Mac Cosmetics
2. Cork eye shadow (to combine with Omega in brow), Mac Cosmetics
3. Rubenesque Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
4. All that Glitters e/s (all over eye), Mac Cosmetics
5. Gentle Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
6. Chicory Lip Pencil, Mac Cosmetics
7. Spice It Up lipstick, Mac Cosmetics

Bold Lip for Red heads with Olive Undertones


1. Cork eye shadow (in brow), Mac Cosmetics
2. Rubenesque Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
3. All that Glitters e/s (all over eye), Mac Cosmetics
4. Warm Soul Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
5. Chicory Lip Pencil, Mac Cosmetics
6. Spice It Up lipstick, Mac Cosmetics

Daytime look for red head with pink undertones


1. Cork eye shadow(in brow), Mac Cosmetics
2. Bare Study Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
3. Party Girl Duo E/S (all over eye), Too Faced Cosmetics
4. Permaplum Power Point E/L, Mac Cosmetics
5. Gentle Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
6. Memento Lip Tar, OCC Cosmetics

Daytime Look for Red-Heads with Olive Undertones


1. Lingering Brow Pencil,  Mac Cosmetics
2. Bare Study Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
3. Nars Kuala Lumpur Duo E/S (all over eye), Sephora
4. Bordeauxline Power Point E/L, Mac Cosmetics
5. Warm Soul Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
6. Spice Lip Pencil, Mac Cosmetics
7. Nymphette Lipglass, Mac Cosmetics

Smokey eye for Red-Heads with Pink Undertones


1. Cork eye shadow (in brow), Mac Cosmetics
2. Constructivist Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
3. Twinks e/s (lid to crease, blend out with 217 brush), Mac Cosmetics
4. Costa Riche Eye Liner, Mac Cosmetics
5. Gentle Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
6. Whirl Lip Pencil, Mac Cosmetics
7. Viva Glam V lipstick, Mac Cosmetics

Smokey Eye for Red-Heads with Olive Undertones


1. Lingering Brow Pencil (in brow), Mac Cosmetics
2. Constructivist Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
3. Antiqued e/s (lid to crease, blend out with 217 brush), Mac Cosmetics
4. Teddy Kohl Liner, Mac Cosmetics
5. Warm Soul Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
6. Spice Lip Pencil, Mac Cosmetics
7. Viva Glam V Lip Glass, Mac Cosmetics

Colorful Eye (Blue) for Red-Heads with Pink Undertones


1. Cork eye shadow (in brow), Mac Cosmetics
2. Bare Study Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
3. Distortion Pigment (lid to crease, blend out with 217 brush and prime color), OCC Cosmetics
4. Prussian Power Point Liner, Mac Cosmetics
5. Gentle Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
6. Whirl Lip Pencil, Mac Cosmetics
7. Viva Glam V lipstick, Mac Cosmetics

Colorful Eye for Red-Heads with Olive Undertones


1. Lingering Brow Pencil (in brow), Mac Cosmetics
2. Bare Study Paint Pot (on lid), Mac Cosmetics
3. Distortion Pigment (lid to crease, blend out with 217 brush and prime color), OCC Cosmetics
4. Prussian Power Point Liner, Mac Cosmetics
5. Warm Soul Mineralize Blush, Mac Cosmetics
6. Spice Lip Pencil, Mac Cosmetics
7. Viva Glam V Lipglass, Mac Cosmetics



The last color choice was based on the complementary colors scheme, for which blue and orange are opposite. Using blue as a redhead makes your skin sparkle against the copper in your hair. It is a fantastic combination no matter how rich the red is in your hair. But you must have sass to carry the last one off. Don't be afraid to try something new and if it does not work its just makeup you can take off. I hope this has been an enlightening lesson for you. If you have any questions do not hesitate to ask. Stay tuned for more.


This season's must have lipsticks for redheads:

For a softer subtle splash of color choose Fanfare Cremesheen Lipstick by Mac



For a bolder splash of color try Ravishing Cremesheen Lipstick by Mac

You can also use Brown Script Eyeshadow by Mac if you have really coppery hair and brows.






*The only time these rules do not apply is when choosing red lipstick; depending on how dark the color is, you would want to do the complete opposite of the rules I gave you above.

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