How to Wear the Metal that is Opposite Your Undertone


Interesting post on upscaling jewellery, this got me thinking about your comment on showing some skin, is this also the case when for example wearing silver jewellery when you are a warm colouring of visa versa wearing gold tone when a cool colouring. I recently noticed someone who was a warm colouring wearing silver, I also noted that the pieces were see through, bangle and earrings, silver trim on watch and small to medium necklace that was sort of open.

how to wear the metal that clashes with your undertone


In my experience, I’ve found that the easiest way to wear an unflattering metal shade in jewellery (avoid it in glasses and garments though as in glasses you just see the frames, not your eyes.  In clothing it will wash you out) is to wear pieces that:

  • Have lots of spaces open so you can see skin through them
  • Wear pieces that mix the metals or colours in with the metals that flatter you.
  • Wear a brushed metal as it’s less obvious
  • Both warm and cool undertones can wear rose gold
  • Keep the scale smaller

Particularly really cool people tend to find that gold looks brassy and cheap, or garish on them, particularly 22ct gold.   Silver on warm skins can look hard and cold, but it also stands out and if a piece of jewellery can create a striking look.

Those who are closer to the warm/cool mid-point find it much easier to wear either gold or silver, neither looking out of place.

Do you like to mix your metals?


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  • Imogen, I wish had your advice forty years ago, I might have avoided a lot of bad jewellery purchases. I am a cool brunette with fair skin and I’m pleased to hear you say I can wear rose gold, because I love rose gold. I don’t need to mix it with anything, but yellow gold and silver are another story. I can’t wear either alone, but a 2:1 mixture e.g. in watches and bracelets works perfectly. Thank you!

  • Thanks for this tip. I hadn’t thought of wearing rose gold before. Jewelry has been a challenge because I’m both cool and warm in coloring. I’ve also discovered that some of my gray hair never keeps a bright coolness. To get that totally “cool” coloring in gray, I would need to use a shampoo with purple highlights but so many times the white doesn’t look natural.

    This post is a good reminder not to typecast gray hair. The color, gunmetal gray, is often overlooked in the fashion industry since the fashion industry attempts to “whiten and brighten thing”( for example, many fashion experts suggest whitening the teeth and sometimes they go overboard and the white looks like snow instead of a natural bright)

    Thanks Imogen for some good information, once again.

  • This is so interesting to me, as I’ve always seen advice recommending that I wear gold jewelry on my pale-beige-with-a-tinge-of-yellow skin but I prefer silver/white gold/platinum. I have high contrast coloring (fair skin/dark hair & eyes) and really enjoy high contrast, dramatic jewelry. Love your color theory and contrast explanations, thanks.

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