Best Colors for Redheads: My Top 5 Absolute Favorite Recommendations!
I’ll be starting today’s post with a question to you fabulous gals:
Have you ever felt a bit lost in front of your wardrobe after a major hair color change? Hand hovering over the hangers, wondering which hues still flatter you, what makeup, which accessories?
I can tell you my answer to this question is a big, resounding YES!
As a natural brunette, I had only a theoretical idea about what the best colors for redheads were, when I starting going for my current cherry-hued locks. An idea I had to constantly put to test against my existing closet.
Sometimes it was trial and error; others, a huge win!
And other times, I discovered that colors I used to hate with a vengeance before, were actually starting to really grow on me. (Looking at you, yellow…)
So, for my fellow redheads (either nature-given or bottle-made), I put together my top 5 chromatic recommendations to help you truly shine! The ones I’ve been repeatedly reaching for and loving ever since I joined the ranks of redheads.
Curious to know what they are? Then keep on reading!
I think blue is one of those colors that every redhead has been told at least once they should wear. And of course, it makes sense, doesn’t it?
After all, blue makes red hair stand out beautifully, thanks to the contrast between these two very warm and very cool colors.
But of course, different shades suit different people! And as a rule of thumb, lighter colors will look great next to lighter hues-which translates into hair tints such as natural ginger. And darker shades will suit darker reds, like cherry or plum.
The common denominator though is the rich & royal cobalt blue. I’ve seen it worn by fair skinned, copper haired beauties, as well as by darker skinned, ruby-redheaded belles. And I could never find fault with it once!
Now, make no mistake:
It took me a while to warm up to this particular color!
And that’s because it never used to look good on me when I had deep brown/black hair.
But the hair color change opened up new possibilies! So I had to start experimenting.
If you’re in the same boat, start dipping your toes by using accessories.
Try on a pair of cobalt pumps, or cinch your waist in a royal blue belt. Reach for a cuff bracelet with sapphire stones.
Then you can start bringing the vivid shade to your face, with necklaces, or earrings.
Or start incorporating larger portions of it in your outfit, as you become more comfortable with it.
Another strong favorite among redheads has to be green. Again, no shock here-since it’s the polar opposite of red on the color wheel, the contrast makes red hues pop!
And a little fun fact you may already know:
Green is considered to be the gateway color between warm and cool ones. Meaning it can easily take both valences! So from that point on, it’s up to you to search for the shades that suit you in particular.
And how do you do that?
By understanding your skin undertones, as well as those of your hair- be it natural or from the salon.
And again, as a rule of thumb:
Warmer skin colors (with gold undertones) will suit warmer hair colors (like golden copper), and warmer greens-like olive.
And the opposite is true for cooler tones.
They will be more easily complemented by cooler reds (those with a higher proportion of blue), and by colder greens, such as emerald.
If you’re sitting pretty in the neutral undertones camp, you can go with either colors!
Now, of course, these are general guidelines meant to help you figure out more easily what suits you. You can choose whichever colors make you feel amazing!
And you can always learn more about the subject, if you’re interested by taking my style course, You and Your Personal Style! Chock-full of in depth colour tips, tricks and pairings (plus loads more personal style info).
I for one, will still go for emerald, even though my hair is on the warmer side. Personal taste and all 🙂
An absolutely gorgeous neutral that suits redheaded ladies is blush pink. I know it’s been having a huge moment in fashion, and there’s no doubt in my mind why:
It’s a more mature, chic and wearable version of pink! Easy to pair and to love.
Blush pink will look amazing next to a lighter hair color and a creamy, freckled complexion. But it also flatters darker hair hues, creating a neutral canvas for them to stand out!
It’s sweet enough to make you look feminine and ethereal, but still serious enough to be elegant, not juvenile.
No wonder I fell for it when it came to picking my wedding dress!
And of course, if you take your undertones into consideration, you may want to reach for different tints.
For example, if you are cool toned, with bright rosy cheeks and an alabaster complexion, you may notice you look fab in a blush that leans more towards cotton candy. And if you’re on the warmer-or more intensely pigmented side-you may favor more of a peachy blush pink.
In my case, due to my neutral undertones and darker hued red hair, I can’t get enough of dusty, rosy blush pink. I normally try to wear it close to my face-at least with accessories if not the actual garments.
But I will also never part with my vintage blush belt either!
Another winning neutral shade for redheads is grey. It’s a colour that makes for chic, sharp looks; but it can also be soft and delicate, depending on how dark it is.
My personal favorite is dove grey, because of its elegance and subtlety.
Although yes, I am aware that by the rules of color selection, I’d be better off with a darker grey, like steel or even charcoal.
That’s because, as I mentioned before, darker hair tints work best with darker clothing, and viceversa.
But again, rules are meant to be broken!
And if you feel your most beautiful with a color that’s not supposed to look great on you, then so be it.
Of course, because I’m such a lover of grey, I have multiple variations of it in my closet:
from abalone to stone, and ash to charcoal.
But feel free to start experimenting with just one type of grey, and go from there, depending on how you feel about it.
One thing I can promise you:
They are a very versatile chromatic family. So if you find a piece you love in a shade that suits you, you will be able to pair it with EVERYTHING!
Now, if we’re talking best colors for redheads, we can’t forget the most solar part of the chromatic spectrum.
And in my case, golden yellow.
As I mentioned in the beginning of this post, I was so not sold on yellow and all its derivatives. From cream to gold, mustard to lemon to sunflower yellow, they all featured prominently on my “Never ever” list.
But, as was the case with cobalt blue, the change in my hair color brought about a new appreciation for yellow tints. I started slowly incorporating them-first in small doses, or on the bottom half of my outfits, a bit further away from my face.
And as I began noticing I actually liked the warmth of deeper, darker varieties of yellow, I started wearing them in higher proportions in my outfits. All culminating with this absolutely amazing golden yellow dress, which makes for a striking summer or fall look!
In the end, it’s all about experimenting (again).
If you want to find your best yellow, try different shades of it against your complexion. Some will make you look more tired, more sallow or unhealthy, while others will make you glow! Those are the ones definitely worth the effort.
I kept this for last, and as a little “extra”-because yes, I know: black is not a color.
At the same time, I felt I could not not include it in my list of best colors for redheads. Because for me, it has become an even bigger favorite since my locks turned from ebony to fiery!
But before I start singing its praises, I do feel like I need to add a little disclaimer here:
Black does not go with everything, and it does not suit everyone. It’s not as universal as you may think-despite what fashion lore says.
And if you find yourself avoiding black because you feel it overpowers your features, washes out your complexion or dulls your hair, you are not weird (or alone)! Black can be too harsh on redheads, especially natural ones.
Do you have copper tinged locks, coupled with a lighter complexion, light colored eyebrows and eyelashes, and maybe blue or green eyes? Then you may find that black is indeed not your best bet.
And in this case, you can replace the “obligatory” LBD with one in the above mentioned shades. Cobalt blue, emerald green, steel grey will be just as versatile, and suit you beautifully!
However, as a counterpoint:
If you have dark, or vibrant (probabil dyed) red hair, black will actually make it stand out incredibly well! And don’t worry if your skin is on the lighter side (mine is!), because the combination will frame your face beautifully.
Add black eyeliner or a heavy layer of mascara, accentuate your eyebrows as needed, and watch your features pop!
I’d like to hear back from you redheaded lovelies out there now:
Do you agree with my list of best colors for redheads? Do you have any favorites that didn’t make the list? Some you feel like other cherry haired babes need to know about? Spill it in the comments!
I am a bottle red head and I have found that pastel colours look great especially lilac, pale pink and mint green. I must admit that I can wear most colours but I will not wear brown or beige. I rarely wear black unless it has a floral pattern. I do wear a lot of blue of all shades. I love having red hair (for over a decade now) and have found my favourite hair dye.
Hey, Paula! That’s so great that you’ve found your best shades for your own hair/eye/skin combo 🙌 What kind of red do you dye your hair- on the warmer or the cooler side? (I also stay away from beige btw- washes me out like nothing else)
Prior to having my colours done I would often be asked if I am feeling alright because so many people thought I looked unwell, I learned from an excellent colour consultant I am a warm autumn and therefore suit warm colours, with yellow undertones such as all shades of orange, many browns, beiges, tomato red, yellow based greens such as olive and avocado and yellow golds, I do not suit blue or pink but do suit magenta and ink purple.
The only times since I had my colours done that anyone has said I look unwell is when I really am sick which has proved a lot of sceptical people wrong, instead I am often told how well I look.
I found it was money well spent and has made shopping so much easier, I had my colours done at 27, I am now 54 and I wish I had the opportunity to have them done earlier.
Absolutely spot on, having your best colours correctly identified is such a game changer! I am glad to hear you had this experience, as it really can enhance your natural colouring when done right.
I am a natural redhead with fair skin, I went to a colour consultant who advised me that black is a big no-no, grey is not in my autumn colour palette, nor is any shade of pink but some greens are, mostly the yellow based ones but not emerald green with our skin tone.
Hey Kate, thanks for your additions! As a Style Coach, it’s always great for me to get input from the actual women who I share my knowledge with.
Indeed, if you fall under the Autumn category, cooler hues will likely suit you less well than warmer ones (eg. Emerald versus Moss green). While other natural redheads with cool skin undertones and cool eyes will experience the opposite.
I am curious to learn also which type of Autumn you are?
yes, yes, yes! 3 years ago I went from platinum blonde to cherry red and I have to admit there was a bit of a struggle to change the color palette from my wardrobe. One of my favorite colors as a blonde was red, and while that looked amazing back then, nowadays is one of my least favorites. Loved the colors you suggested, but I have to admit the only color that I am still hesitant of wearing is green, even if I do have it on some prints, I am still not convinced I can pull it on a shirt or a dress. 😀
I totally feel you-red can be tricky to pull indeed. But a pair of red pumps for example can never hurt 😍 And fair enough, everybody has one or two shades they can’t love no matter what; it’s all about trying and testing ☺