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Atypical Color Types

    For people who exhibit typical characteristics, it’s often quite easy to determine their color type. Those who are very unsure or have great difficulty determining their color type themselves turn to me for color type advice.

    This means I analyze many “difficult” and atypical cases. In terms of atypical color types and types that can only be partially assigned to a specific color type, I have gained some experience during my work.

    There are more atypical color types than one might think. However, they are not mentioned in most common descriptions of color types. It wouldn’t make much sense to include rare or unusual characteristics in a description. This would make them confusing and determining one’s own color type would be even more confusing and difficult the more unusual characteristics there are.

    Am I an atypical color type?

    If you possess typical characteristics, the color type is usually determined quickly. However, regardless of individual characteristics, you should consider yourself as a whole and look very closely. This is usually not so easy. But without considering how the individual characteristics interact with each other, you cannot get a reliable result. It’s not just about individual components of your appearance, but about how your overall appearance reacts to and harmonizes with different colors. My online course helps you recognize this so that you can also determine your atypical color type with its help.

    “I’m not a Winter type if I don’t look like Snow White.”

    Atypical Color Types in Seasonal Color Analysis

    The most common misconception is that Winter types must all look like Snow White: dark hair and very fair skin. Nothing could be further from the truth. Winter types are very diverse. The typical Snow White may be typical of Clear Winter. But Clear Winter is not equal to exclusively Snow White. These cool, clear types with high contrasts can also have lighter hair. Deep Winter types have much less contrast than the typical Snow White, and among the Cool Winter types, there are many variations.

    But even Snow White doesn’t necessarily have to be a Clear Winter! If Snow White’s skin isn’t quite as fair and the hair, skin, eyes, and/or lips have more neutral than cool undertones, Snow White would probably be a Deep Winter. If all her features are distinctly cool – the lips are no longer blood red but more magenta – she will be a Cool Winter. If her overall appearance is more neutral-warm, for example, very dark chestnut brown hair and rather Bordeaux red lips, Deep Autumn is more likely.

    Below is a list of atypical color types that frequently occur in my consultations. By clicking on each type, you will be taken to the page for intermediate and atypical types of the respective overarching property: Deep, Soft, and Cool.

    Atypical color types that are clearly assignable to a color type and can also use this palette without restrictions in their appearance:

    • Deep Autumn appearing lighter than typical
    • Deep Winter lighter than typical
    • Cool Winter with very light hair and little contrast from skin to hair, but great contrast compared to the eyes. These types can sometimes borrow better from Clear Winter than from Cool Summer.
    • Cool and Clear Winter types where the hair appears reddish, depending on the lighting, but darker or lighter or not recognizable at all.
    • Cool Winter clearer than typical but too cool for Clear Winter. These can always borrow better from the cool Clear Winter colors than from Cool Summer.
    • Cool Summer lighter than typical
    • Cool Summer types with very radiant blue eyes
    • Cool Summer very muted, so they cannot borrow from Cool Winter.
    • Cool Summer/Winter intermediate type

    Atypical color types that cannot use their palette without restrictions:

    • Soft Autumn types warmer (and clearer) than typical, so they cannot borrow from Soft Summer, but a little from Deep and Warm Autumn
    • Soft Summer cooler (and clearer) than typical – therefore cannot borrow from Soft Autumn, but a little from Cool Summer


    Intermediate types are somewhat easier for the expert to recognize than 2-in-1 types. On the other hand, it is difficult for most customers to implement when they receive tips like, “The Deep Autumn palette in warmer colors suits you better.” Or: “Choose your Deep Winter colors slightly lighter and cooler than on the color swatch”. That’s why I decided to include Digital Color Palettes for the most common In-Between-Types.

    2-in-1 Types

    In addition to atypical types, there are actually also types that do not fit well into a color type. These types mix the characteristics of two color types that don’t have much in common. These mixed types occur less frequently than “intermediate types” of closely related types. In my experience, mixed types make up only 2-3% of cases at most. However, when it does happen, it’s difficult to decide whether the person should be assigned to Deep Autumn or Cool Summer, for example. This seems totally crazy because, apart from the similar degree of mutedness of the colors, the two types don’t have much in common. Nevertheless, the skin and lips can be very neutral-warm, while the eyes and hair are neutral-cool or even cool. If the “atypical” light Deep Autumn type comes into play, the classification becomes very difficult.

    However, I have been able to assign each of my clients to the “most suitable” color type so far. I use a simple point system for this. I look at how many characteristics fit better with one type and how many with the other.

    What should I do if I am such a 2-in-1 type?

    I advise against making any changes at first. So, don’t dye your hair to match the best-fitting type. It’s also too early to go through your wardrobe and get rid of everything that doesn’t seem to fit. Take it slowly and start by buying a few items (e.g., a sweater, a T-shirt, and a lipstick). This way, you can try out whether you feel comfortable with the colors of your best-fitting type. Unfortunately, there are usually some colors that don’t suit 2-in-1 types well. You can also find tips in my article “How to Adapt Favorite Pieces with ‘Wrong Colors’ to My Color Type?