One of the biggest challenges of shopping for clothing online — other than the arbitrary sizing — is figuring out if a certain colour is going to look good on you. Sure, you probably have one or two go-to colours: shades that people have told you look good on you. And that’s great! (Although we should note that relying on that method isn’t always the best idea, because people often have very different opinions about what “looks good.”) But there’s another option: a free app and website that finds your ideal colour palette for you. Here’s how to use it.
A brief history of finding your colour palette
The idea of taking your skin tone, hair colour and eye colour into consideration when picking clothing and makeup isn’t new at all. It kicked off with colour theory in the 1920s, was picked up by Old Hollywood costume designers, and continued to gain traction in the 1960s and 1970s. (For more background, read this article in Jezebel.)
But dressing via a colour palette that works for you went mainstream in 1980, when Carole Jackson’s book Colour Me Beautiful was published. Her system really took off — eventually including quizzes, videos, and a multi-level marketing (MLM) operation.
Perhaps you had the pleasure of attending a Colour Me Beautiful party at someone’s home, where the consultant draped fabrics over your shoulder to help you figure out if you’re a Summer, Winter, Spring or Autumn. Anyway, that’s the general concept behind the Colorwise.me app and website, but without the pitfalls of an MLM.
How to use Colorwise.me
We first learned of Colorwise.me through Recomendo’s newsletter: the source of many great hacks. You can either use the service through their website or by downloading their app. Just snap a face-only selfie, upload it to the site, and then work with the recommendations (and your own preferences) to find a colour palette that won’t leave you looking washed out or sickly.
Beyond that, the app has all kinds of other features, like scanning an item of clothing — something you already own and love — and figuring out its exact colour so you can find something comparable when shopping online.