So many women tell me they have a closet full of black clothing that they now realize doesn’t especially flatter them. What to do? There are several quick update options to use while you work on transitioning your wardrobe to a neutral that is more personally flattering. Here are a few good ideas …
First, let’s acknowledge that some women DO look good in black – women with either high-value or very high-contrast coloring often have black as part of their personal color scheme (hair color usually) and can wear the color just fine.
For those who don’t, first take solace in the knowledge that the myths you’ve been told about black’s magic really aren’t true:
- Black pieces always match each other. NOT! Black dye is actually made from a mix of other colors, so one black may lean more blue-ish, another more green-ish, and third may have a brown cast. They just don’t match – period.
- Black makes you look thinner. NOT. At least not a bit more than any other deep, dark color. Dark brown, navy, charcoal, deep plum, hunter green, dark rust, wine are just as minimizing and often a lot more flattering to a particular woman.
- Black doesn’t show dirt. NOT a bit more true of black than any other dark color. In fact, stuff like dust and chalk show MORE on black. And possibly mustard and catsup – don’t ask how I know about that.
- Every accent color goes with black. NOT as well as those accent colors go with their more closely related neutral. In the examples below, see how the accent colors have greater harmony with their key neutral than with black. Put an extended finger over the black on your screen and consider the harmony you see. Then cover the other neutral instead and see the difference.
Despite #4 above, adding some tops in your most flattering accent colors is one way to pull those black skirts and pants into more flattering outfits until you can afford to replace them with bottoms in your key neutral. If you have a necklace with your best metal+black, that will help unify the outfit by repeating the bottom color at the top. We call that trick “bottoms-up” accessorizing.
This same idea works for ash blonde hair, auburn hair, gray hair … whatever. And mixing a dark brown hair color with black is – in my view – the ultimate sophistication.
If you need a scarf to link your hair color with existing black clothes, check out the examples in our inventory. You’ll find them HERE.
We’d love to hear about your black updates in the COMMENTS section below