The Best Makeup for Your Coloring
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The Best Makeup for Your Coloring

Find colors that look natural on you.

Here's a surprising tip: To identify colors that will work for you, use your hair as a guide (not your eyes)! If you're a blonde, go with creams and taupes. Brunettes look great in mochas and chocolate browns. If you're auburn or redheaded, choose shades of copper, peach, and reddish browns or cool tones like pinks and lavenders. Gray hair looks gorgeous with tones of grays, soft purples, and blues. 

No matter what your hair color, look for depth and complexity in these colors; they shouldn't look like they came from a box of crayons. Another color tip: When you're doing a look that requires more than one color, start with the lightest shade first, then move on to the darker tones. If you're unsure about colors, stick to neutrals. You can still achieve drama and variety with neutral tones -- they're actually my favorite to work with.

Here are my best color tips for each part of the face:

Eyes: If you want to experiment with color, but not go all the way, you can ease into it by accompanying a color with a neutral, such as lilac on the lid and brown in the crease. Peach or light blue also look great next to neutrals. Choose soft shades of these colors and you'll be fine.

Cheeks: Color selection is important here. Go for blushes with a neutral base, using your own coloring as a guide. Sometimes I mix pink with nude to get the right shade.

Face: Foundation should always match your skin tone. Don't try to fake a porcelain face when you aren't that fair. Likewise, don't try to fake a two-week vacation in St. Bart's if you aren't that dark. Anything other than your real color will look like a mask. Remember, foundation should disappear on the skin.

Lips: Lips don't lie -- the natural pigmentation of your lips should be the underlying tint of every lip color you wear. That's why the same lip color always looks different on you than on your friends. Most brown-based lip colors look more natural, even when the color's deep. Case in point: brownish red is easier to wear -- and looks softer -- than a bluish red. 

You can get many different tones and textures out of one tube of lipstick. If you want blue-toned lipsticks to look browner and more neutral, start by applying a brownish lip pencil over the entire lip, then apply lip color over that to create a new shade.

If you prefer paler lips, cover them with a light coating of foundation. Then apply a light color over that. This is also the way to get the truest color from any lip product, as it minimizes your natural lip color. 

Sonia Kashuk's book, Real Beauty, is available at bookstores nationwide.