From color to styling to Hollywood trends, Wardrobe Therapy's Elizabeth Bean Smith talks hair.
Q: Lots of women go blonde - or blonder - this time of year. What colors tend to work best on blondes? Any colors they should stay away from?
A: We have found that women who are blonde (or who have a little help) generally look great in what we call "summer" colors. Summer colors are soft pastel colors and neutrals. Blues and purples (especially if the eyes are blue/green) are great go-to colors this summer. However, these colors can be tricky if the person has an extremely fair skin-tone and very blonde hair. Pastels can then make the person appear washed out. If the person has warmer skin tones with blonde hair, then she will look best in warm colors, such as yellows, oranges, browns, peaches, etc. If she has cooler skin tones, then she will look best in cool colors, such as blues, greens, pinks, purples and blue-based reds.
Q: What colors look best on brunettes? Any they should avoid?
A: Brunettes generally look best in colors such as browns, oranges and golds. However, if you're ready to add a little color (other than the neutrals), red is unstoppable. Stay focused on blue-reds. Jewel tones or rich, deep colors are also colors that work well on brunettes. Colors that brunettes typically want to avoid are pastels. Whether they are olive-based in skin tone or have pale skin tones, pastels generally do not work.
Q: Is it true that redheads should steer clear of red?
A: Of course not! In fact, if we remember at the 2007 Oscars, Nicole Kidman wore a blazing red Balenciaga gown and looked fabulous! I love seeing a red-head wearing bright red. It's bold. The key is finding the right shade of red that compliments the red hair and skin tone.
Q: A lot of women wear their hair pulled back during these hot months. What clothing and accessories can women pair with their ponytails to look stylish - and not lazy?
A: A personal favorite is a silk/lightweight cotton bandana. There are so many to choose from: prints, paisley, florals, animal prints, solids. It's an easy update to a solid shirtdress or simple tee and shorts (and you don't have to mess with your hair!) I also love the look of skinny hair bands (ones with a little detail such as patent or a simple feather) on women with short bobs. Thicker headbands are fabulous for women with longer hair. Or even a little Fedora put on over a low pony is a quick fix that is stylish and smart.
Q: Finally, which Hollywood starlets do the best job incorporating their hair into their overall style?
A: I think of Nicole Richie immediately. She has such a "boho chic" style, and her hair and the different head wraps you see her wearing all flow into her fashion statement. Katie Holmes is also one that absolutely incorporates her hair with her overall style - classic, chic. Oh, and of course, then we think of Victoria Beckham. Short, ultra-glam, confident cut to go with her "take charge of fashion" style.
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Kristy Eckert is editor of Capital Style.