6 neutral colors that suit any skin tone and will never go out of style
Regardless of whether you use basic colors to create monochrome looks or as the basis for bright outfits, they remain the "base" of the wardrobe. Not to mention that these colors are always in fashion and suit any skin tone.
"Neutral colors are incredibly versatile and can be easily mixed and matched with a wide range of other colors and patterns," says Rosie Mangiarotti, fashion expert and founder of Perkies.
"Firstly, they act as a canvas, allowing you to create a variety of looks with just a few things. Secondly, unlike bright trendy colors, neutrals remain relevant season after season, making them a reliable investment for your wardrobe," she adds.
According to Charles Fratto, womenswear designer and director of ILOE STUDIOS, the trick is to find your undertone. Neutral shades such as dark brown, nude, and blue-gray are particularly suitable for people with cooler skin tones, while warmer shades such as sand and caramel look best on people with warm undertones. That said, it will be hard to use any of the following neutral shades in the wrong way as stylists say are suitable for all skin tones.
It's probably obvious, but black is a timeless color that suits any skin tone. "It makes you look slimmer and more elegant, adding a touch of sophistication to any outfit," says Jo Manktelow-Pimm, style expert and editor at 7Gents. Black serves as a canvas for original looks. "Adding bright or metallic accents can enhance a black outfit," he adds.
If you think that black looks too contrasting on you, for example, because of your fair skin, then dark gray will look softer. "Charcoal gray always looks luxurious, regardless of the manufacturer," says Carol Davidson, stylist and self-esteem consultant.
"Charcoal gray suits and blazers can be worn to formal events or worn with jeans for everyday wear," Mangiarotti says. Manktelow-Pimm suggests choosing a monochrome look by combining rich charcoal with lighter shades of gray. This neutral color will also look amazing with pale pink, light blue and burgundy.
Bright white will suit skin with cold shades, while cream will complement skin with a warm undertone. But, according to Jared McCullough, a style expert at A Few Wood Men, ivory, which is a midway point between white and cream, suits any undertone.
Ivory creates a soft contrast to darker skin tones and adds warmth to lighter ones, Mangiarotti says. Morgan and Margaret Hodge, co-founders of M&M Suit Shop, note that ivory goes well with many other colors, including green, navy, mauve, maroon and terracotta. "For a light summer look, I like to combine a soft ivory color with other lighter or pastel shades," Davidson adds.
"The most versatile base color is navy," Davidson says," It doesn't emphasize wrinkles like black but makes you look slimmer. It's also easy to combine with other colors."
Davidson and Mangiarotti like to pair navy with white, beige or gray for a more put-together look. At the same time, it looks great with both silver and gold jewelry. "A navy blue jacket or dress can be worn to work or every day," Mangiarotti says. "Navy blue also serves as a great base for brightly colored or metallic accessories," he adds.
According to Jaime King, senior vice president of design at Maurices, neutral-warm browns like camel look good on everyone, regardless of their complexion. Camel can also be worn in any season and with almost any shade, except neon. "This warm, neutral color gives a natural glow to any skin tone," Manktelow-Pimm says. It also works well for both casual and business occasions. To add depth to your look with this color, consider adding different textures and layering. "Gold or bronze accessories can also enhance the warm shades," he explains.
If you prefer a richer brown color than camel, then chocolate is a great choice. "Chocolate brown complements both cool and warm shades, which makes it versatile," says Elizabeth Kosich, a certified stylist and founder of Elizabeth Kosich Styling. According to her, chocolate brown also serves as a great substitute for black because it looks less harsh. To create an alternative to the classic little black dress, try a little brown one instead with nude ballet flats or brown knee-high boots, adding an ivory coat for contrast. If you are lacking color, try pairing this shade of brown with light green or blue.