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PCA Myth Busters – ‘Perfecting the Skin’ (Part 2) and ‘Any Hair/Eye/Skin Colour Can Be Found in Any Tone’ (Part 1)

“Beauty presents itself as one unified whole”

Kathryn Kalisz


“I’m seeing more and more Light Summers, that have dark hair and eyes and I don’t understand how a lot of them can be Light Summers. I understand that with this system (SciART) it’s solely the skin which is used to determine a person’s season but how can this be accurate when eyes and natural hair colour contribute to someone’s overall appearance and colouring?”

“If eyes are a relatively small in the body and hair can be easily dyed why are these so important? Surely skin and the right colour clothes are a bigger area and hair and eyes will benefit from using colours to make the skin look its best….I guess I have not fully got my head around the hair and eye bit having had 2 wrong analysis’s axed on hair and eyes…”

“…there does seem to be a general belief that Sci/Art is only about skin. Hair colour etc is irrelevant. ‘It’s all about perfecting the skin’ is a phrase that springs to mind.”

Generally speaking certain physical characteristics (hair/skin/eye colours) can be attributed to each of the 12 tones. For example Dark Winters and Dark Autumns generally have dark hair and eyes, whilst Light Springs and Light Summers generally have lighter hair and eyes by comparison. These generalities make sense in terms of how colour harmony works-the closer the relationship between two or more colours (in terms of hue/value/chroma) the more colour harmony is perceived.   This is not to say that unusual combinations of hair/skin/eye colouring do not exist, they certainly do but are far less common than people imagine. Although useful as a guide, physical descriptors cannot be used alone as an accurate diagnostic tool for PCA.

To understand why this is, we must take into account that human vision is based on contrast; we only know for sure what a colour is (in terms of hue/value/chroma) when we have something to compare it to.

In PCA the comparisons are made between unknown quantities (hair/skin/eye colours) to a known quantity. In the case of SciART 12-Tone PCA this ‘known’ quantity is a set of test colours (drapes) which have been accurately allocated to 12 different areas of colour space. By comparing and contrasting the positive and negative optical illusions during the analysis process, the analyst is able to determine which of the 12 tones an individual’s natural colouring harmonises with.  In essence an analyst must learn to “ignore the colours and focus on the effects.” 

Instead of saying ‘you have red hair and blue eyes therefore you must be….’ the principles on which accurate SciART 12-Tone analysis are based go something like this.   “You have red hair, green eyes and light skin-you might be this or this based on my experience, but I will put that aside and test and see where you actually do belong”.   All the results should be evidence based. No guessing involved. Every decision or conclusion must be visually provable.

In essence no decision should be based on the colouring that you have (although it certainly provides clues) but should be based on which colours provide the wearer with the most positive optical illusions.  These include but are not limited to: definition of the jaw line, smoothing of lines and wrinkles around the eyes and forehead, increased lustre of the natural hair and eye colour, lessening of shadows under the eyes, healthy lip colour, facial features  in focus etc.  It is important to note here that positive and negative optical illusions may also be different from person to person, although generally speaking though purple tinged lips and sallow skin is not a sign of harmony!

Colour harmony for different tones can also mean different things. For example I find harmony for some tones means a softening effect on the skin/hair eyes, yet for others it means shinier hair, a dewy complexion and increased radiance of the eye colouring.  It is also important to remember that no one feature should be highlighted or ‘perfected’ at the expense of another.  Harmony means just that, an agreement or accord between all elements resulting in one, complete and harmonious whole.

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