Real Women Case Studies

This "Real Women" page is where I showcase actual clients I have analyzed virtually. This is in contrast to celebrity women, who are - yes, I know - real women also. But most of my clients don't have photoshopped glamour photos styled by professional makeup artists, fashion stylists, etc.

They have graciously allowed me to use their photos so you can learn from their color analysis.

Real Women Case #13

"Donna" is a Dusty Soft Summer. I'm particularly pleased with the virtual mini-makeover I did on her.  I changed the brighter blue top to a soft grey-blue. 
A wash of that same shade of grey-blue eyeshadow and light soft pink lipstick was all I need to make an amazing difference. 

Dusty Soft Summer woman example

Everything harmonizes.

Dusty Summer real woman eyes closeup

And look how beautiful her eyes are!

They are the epitome of soft summer eyes!

Real Women Case Study #12


Case #12 is another Soft Autumn, but not a Smokey Soft Autumn like the last 5 volunteers were :)

"Abby" was an easy one for me. I like easy ones. 

Here is a current photo without makeup.

You can clearly see the warmth in her, though it muted compared to a Warm Autumn.

Since she’s not a Warm Autumn, and too light overall to be a Deep Autumn or even darker Soft Autumns, this leaves the lighter Soft Autumns.

While her skin’s surface looks a little on the cool side, her eyes are warm. And in my ColorBreeze System, one key aspect is looking for a person’s sister-season. This will help you pinpoint your actual season.

If Abby had blue-eyes, I may be tempted to suggest the Dusty Soft Autumn which points toward the Sunlit Soft Summer. But with the warm eyes and the fact that she showed me other photos such as these below made me choose Sunlit Soft Autumn for her (she seems to flow into the Sunlit Soft Spring).

Remember, there is a bit of luminosity (sunlight and warmth) in the Sunlit Autumn that the Dusty doesn’t have. This is why I chose the Sunlit Soft Autumn for her.  But like all sister-seasons, she can borrow some colors from the Sunlit Soft Spring as well.

Real woman case study Sunlit Soft Autumn

Remember, there is a bit of luminosity (sunlight and warmth) in the Sunlit Autumn that the Dusty doesn’t have. This is why I chose the Sunlit Soft Autumn for her. But like all sister-seasons, she can borrow some colors from the Sunlit Soft Spring as well.

Real Women Case #11

We now have a 5th person in a row that turned out to be yet another Smokey Soft Autumn! Well, I have analyzed other real women in-between these examples who were different seasons but those who have volunteered for my case study lately have all been Smokey Soft Autumns. 

And that is good because it will allow you to see what this often misdiagnosed season looks like in different people. 

Chantelle told me she felt she looked good in royal blue and other jewel tones. She also loved black and white prints.

But if you are familiar with this season, none of those colors are in her palette. So I wasn't sure how she would accept this season. But I just tell clients my thoughts and hopefully they will agree. Sometimes they do. Sometimes they don't.

Sometimes they never give me any feedback at all.  Chantelle did. 

But first let's look at a few of her photos:

Real woman case study smokey soft autumn b1
Toasted Soft Autumn woman b2

Above is the virtual makeover I did on her. See how gorgeous her eyes are with rich brown eyeshadows? Adding just some soft peach blush and lipstick brings her eyes into even more focus, as they should be. 

Here is what she wrote to me a few months after her analysis:


I have to thank you for the analysis.  I was uncertain at first as the new colors were the ones I have avoided my whole life.  That being said, I bought a few olive and dark teal and khaki items, and have received nothing but compliments in these shades.  So I am now a proper convert!

You are welcome to use my photos for your website examples if you would like.


I do love getting emails like this. They make my day :)

Real Women Case #10

My 10th Case marks the 4th person in a row that I have labeled the same season as the previous three, believe it or not. 

Katarzyna had previously been analyzed as a Cool Summer and a few other seasons. Here are just some of her photos:

Toasted Soft Autumn woman case 10
Real woman case #10 child

The above photos show one photo (above, left) being much warmer than the other one.  Even so, both images show her eyes were quite warm and muted, and her skin, even in the cooler photo,  at the very least,  looks muted.  She sent me lots of photos with hair ranging from blonde to dark brown to even an auburn shade. 

Her childhood photos (left) show that her hair was naturally pretty neutral and somewhat ashy. Still, I could see some warm tones in her hair. 

So I tested colors on her via Photoshop. 

Real woman case #10 warm vs cool colors

The photo on the left (above) was the original photo she sent me. Along with the navy top and pinkish lipstick and blush that was already there, I added some light grey eyeshadow to test out the previous Cool Summer assessment she received from someone else.  Her eyes are simply too warm to be a Cool Summer. Her skin seemed too warm, as well. 

If she were, perhaps a Soft Summer, warming up her top and adding warm makeup would not be flattering. But when I did, her eyes seemed to glow. The warmth sunk in beautifully. 

She has blended temperatures, and as I always say, one will be more dominant than the other one, even if it is just slightly. This means that she can successfully choose colors from both sides of the spectrum as long as they are not cool or too warm. But she clearly has more warmth than coolness. Warming things up slightly will amplify the subtle warm tones in her. 

I believe she is a Smokey Soft Autumn. I chose the deeper soft Autumn because of the depth of her eyes, though she actually is more mid-value. Another reason was that even as a young child, her hair was not that blonde. Had her hair been light blonde naturally, I would have no problem labeling her a Dusty Soft Autumn, even a Sunlit Autumn had it been very golden blonde. 

Speaking of hair color, she asked me which hair color was better blonde or darker brown. As I tell all Soft Autumns (and Soft Summers), there is a pretty wide range of hair colors that she could wear. Darker brown or lighter blonde will work, and neither is better than the other. It's just a personal preference. But I advise not to go too flat and dark nor too light/platinum blonde, and add warm highlights and/or lowlights to add depth and dimension. 

Below is a photo of her with a range of hair color, and she looks great in all of them :)


Real Woman Case Study #9

Real woman case study 11a

Leana said on her questionnaire that some of her most unflattering colors were muustard, olive green, yellow, orange. And in the end, I tell her she’s an Autumn (where these colors are standard)!

But I have to tell it as I see it. And from the photos below, I saw her being soft and predominantly warm and soft.

Real Women Smokey Soft Autumn 11B

Her childhood photo shows her hair to be the same -predominantly warm, but nothing that is extremely golden or red.  So she is not the typical golden Warm Autumn. She is definitely a Soft Autumn.

Even though her eyes are on the deeper side, I’d say her overall value is medium-to-light. So I chose the Soft Autumn light.  Since her has was not that warm, I chose the Dusty Soft Autumn, even though most Dusty Autumns have blue eyes (but not always).

Her earthy, warm eyes told me she was warm and soft. Her skin looked predominantly warm, but as we know, skin tones can be deceiving. What was the deciding factor between soft autumn or soft summer was the soft lavender top.

If she was a soft summer, that color should be more flattering to her coloring.  And while it’s not a horrible color, it really does not blend in to coloring at all.
So I tried a soft yellow on her and warmed up her makeup to test my assumption:

Real Woman case 9 test warm vs cool colors

I do think it blends in quite beautifully with her natural coloring. That shade of yellow would not be flattering on a summer.

Why didn’t I choose the Sunlit Soft Autumn? I definitely considered it.

Unique to the ColorBreeze System is the identifying of who one’s sister-season is (what season does she seem to flow in to?)  This helps me distinguish between two ‘twin’ seasons like the Sunlit and Dusty Soft Autumns.

If her hair was naturally lighter and I felt she could handle much more brightness, I’d say she would flow into the Sunlit Soft Spring.  But I actually think that she has a little more summer elements to her than a Spring.  And again, since she is not super warm, I chose the Dusty Autumn.

Real Women Case Study #8

Real woman case #8

Just like Case #7 below, Amy was easy to diagnose, as well.

I've seen this coloring so many times, mainly because the client can't quite pin down their exact season, or a paid analysis from another analyst might just not feel quite right to them. 

This is why I get so many of these women (and men!) as clients. 

Below are just a few photos she sent me:

real woman smokey autumn amy child

The warmth in Amy's skin is undeniable, but it does seem kind of neutral and muted.  The eyes are a mixture of soft olive, warm brown, greyish-green. Her hair is mostly a neutral brown with some golden highlights. 

People with these types of colorings are often thought of as a Winter, due to the darker eyes, or perhaps a Deep Autumn. But when it is obvious that she is not so deep as to qualifiy her as a Deep Autumn, they sometimes assume Summer may be more appropriate since very warm, golden colors never quite feel right on them. 

But there is a perfect Autumn for her that is not golden warm, rich but not dark. She is a Smokey Soft Autumn.   

She stated on her questionnaire that she did not like brown and orange on her. I had to explain that the Smokey Soft Autumn's oranges and browns (yes, they are in her palette) are mostly rich and muted. No bright oranges or golden browns. In fact, except for some occasional brighter accents, bright colors should be avoided entirely. She's all amount richness and softness and neutral-to-warm colors. 

I did a mini-makeover on her:


I made the original grey top (which didn't look bad) slightly warmer and turned it into a greyish green, which is a color Smokey Autumns look great in. 

I just added brown and grey-green eyeshadow and liner, and some soft peach blush and lipstick. 

I think she looks fabulous!

See more Real Women Case Studies on next page

1 2

Return to Home page