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Fashion Maven: Choose the color that’s right for you

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I absolutely love colors, but they can be a bit tricky when it comes to actually wearing them. Some of you may never wear a very bright color, choosing instead to stick to a colorless outfit. This may be because you don’t know how to wear a bright color, or maybe you’re a bit color-shy.
Take it from me, being color savvy is much more enjoyable than being color-shy. I know, you’re probably thinking, “well if it’s so great, then how do you do it?” Don’t worry. Here are some tips.
Start out with small bits of color. If you have a dull-colored outfit, try adding a colorful necklace, bag, shoes, ring, bracelet, scarf, earrings, headband, belt, or other accessory.
Finding the right color for your skin tone may be a bit difficult, but I have some tips that may help you. A general rule of thumb in testing a color to see if it’ll work with your skin tone is to hold a garment in that color against your face.
This should be done in a relatively well-lit room. If it makes you look pasty, or doesn’t do any justice to the color of your eyes or skin, then it is not your color.
But don’t be discouraged if you don’t find the perfect color the first time around and don’t give up hope just because a hue doesn’t turn out to be your color. That doesn’t mean you have to steer clear of it, just try to avoid wearing it close to your face. You can wear it in small doses, for example, in accessories.
Layering variations of the same color is another option. Wearing an ice-blue tank top under a navy blazer could be very flattering, especially when you pair them with a dark blue chunky necklace. For the adventurous, wearing an orange necklace could really make the outfit pop.
Beware of being color-ambitious. Color is great, but too much of it is not.
Think of it like mixing paint: little amounts of one color mixed with little amounts of another color works, but when you start mixing globs of every color of the rainbow, what do you get? A yucky, mushy brown.
Do we want our outfits to look yucky and mushy? I think not, so try to avoid pairing multiple colors with your outfit.
A colorful floral-print skirt is a wonderful option, as long as you pair it with a top that matches one of the colors in the skirt’s pattern.
Occasionally, patterns can be mixed, as long as neither one is big, contrasting in color, or the same.
Two overly colorful floral prints, for example, combined in the same outfit can be a recipe for disaster. Especially, if one floral print is on a blouse and the other one is on the pants.
You can mix two contrasting colors, like orange and blue or yellow and blue, as long as one of them is only added as an accent. Despite the fact that colors can appear in outrageous combinations on catwalks, that doesn’t mean that you should wear a mind-boggling set of colors, too.
Color is key to an outfit, and everyone should learn to use it to make a look pop.

Alexandra Hehlen is a sophomore at Los Alamos High School.
Send comments or questions about this column to teenpulse@lamonitor.com.