Ines Lopes

After identifying your skin type, the next step to achieve a great makeup look is to identify your skin's undertone.

Why is it important to find your skin's undertone?

Identifying your skin's undertone will help you find the best color match for your makeup, hair color, outfit, and jewelry, giving you the most flattering results.

What is skin's undertone?

Skin's undertone refers to the mix of colors underneath the first skin layer that will affect the overall tone of your skin. This depends on the amount of melanin (the pigment that gives color to skin, hair, and eyes) that each person naturally has, as well as the number of veins closer to the surface of the skin. Unlike the complexion - light, medium, olive, and deep, the skin's undertone will not change throughout the seasons. Therefore, people with a light or deep complexion can have the same undertones and vice versa. So, to ease it up, you can look at it as your skin's color warmth.


Skin's undertones

  • Cool
  • Warm 
  • Neutral
A skin with cool undertones tends to sunburn very easily instead of tanning. Silver jewelry looks more flattering since it is also a cool shade. The overall tone of the skin seems to be more pink/blue and to show blue/purple veins.

A skin with warm undertones will most likely get tanned and not sunburnt. The overall tone of the skin appears to be yellow/green and the veins look more greenish. In this case, the warmer shades like gold seem more flattering.

A skin with neutral undertones doesn't show any obvious tone/color. Instead, it can even look more grayish. It has, as the name states, neutral shades and therefore tends to look flattering in either silver or gold.

How to find skin's undertone

There are two places of our body that are naturally hidden from the light but still easily accessible for analysis - the neck, and the inside of the arm. 

One simple method that may help you find your skin's undertone is to do the "arm test" (mentioned below) with someone else. Most likely you will both have different undertones, which can make it easier to identify them.

If you're doing it alone, that's also fine! Hopefully, these simple tests will help you just as good. 
Just remember to always do this only with natural day-light.

Skin's undertone

The arm test

With your arm straight and the palm of your hand facing upwards, look at your wrists and identify the color of your veins. If they seem more blue/purple, you likely have cool undertones. If on the other hand, your veins seem green, most probably your skin's undertone is warm. If you can't identify any of these colors, or you can see all of them, you may have neutral undertones.

The white sheet test

With your skin clean and free of any makeup, place yourself in front of a mirror with a white piece of paper close to your face. Now, tilt your face a little bit to the side and try to identify any cooler (pink/blue) or warmer (yellow/orange) tones on your lower jaw, when compared to the white piece of paper. If the overall tone seems pink/blue, you have cool undertones. Otherwise, your skin may have warm undertones.

A few questions you can ask yourself

Does your skin normally tan when exposed to the sun or does it easily get sunburned? If you easily get a sunburn, even before getting a tan, you likely have a cool undertone skin. If you tan very easily and rarely get sunburned, your skin's undertone is more likely to the warm. 

skin undertone

Now, personal taste aside, does gold jewelry looks more flattering on you? Or does silver jewelry looks more natural on your skin?

If the answer is gold, your skin's undertone is warm. If you choose silver, your skin's undertone is cool.

If you can't decide and both look naturally flattering on you, then clap your hands and do the happy dance, because that simply means that you have all the colors to play with and they will all look just as great on you!

skin undertone

I hope these simple tips help you find your skin's undertone. I used to have an immense difficulty understanding skin's undertone and identifying mine until I learned and put these tricks to the test.


  1. Uhhh i like very very much :P ahah
    Agora a sério, adorei!

    1. hahah nice! I'm so glad you liked it!
      Ajudou nalguma coisa?
      Um beijo grande