Value Contrast and Your Value

Prev3 of 3Next
Use your ← → (arrow) keys to browse

dark vs light

That said, you can see how when I had dark hair (and so dark colouring) I suited the dark colours much better than I do now with my light hair (and now light colouring).  I definitely have to wear  more eyeliner to be able to carry off black now as I need a deep colour on my face for it to relate to.

valueYou can see that the overall light or medium value colour suit me so much better now than the deep/dark colours as your eye flows from top to toe and back up more easily when there is not such a contrast with my colouring.  In fact when I had the deep colouring I remember trying on white jackets and just never ever liked the look, it was wrong on me then, but works perfectly now I have light colouring.

white jacket and jeans


And I will wear it with a more medium colour, than a dark colour as I have medium blue eyes which makes my value contrast more medium.

More posts on value contrast:

Real life examples of value contrast

7 important factors when working with contrast

Working with low contrast

working with medium contrast

working with high contrast

what is my value contrast?



Prev3 of 3Next
Use your ← → (arrow) keys to browse


I'm not sure if it's for you but how would you feel if you learned all about the colours and styles of clothing that suit your individual personality, shape and style? Just imagine what it would be like when you can open your wardrobe and pull together fabulous outfits that make you look and feel amazing every day? If you'd like to stop wasting money on the wrong clothes and accessories plus join an amazing bunch of very special women also on their style journey - then my 7 Steps to Style program is right for you. Find out more here.

More from Imogen

What to Wear When you Don’t Have Great Legs

Hi, I live in drought-ridden California (SF Bay Area) and am bracing...
Read More


  • Hi Imogen,

    Good post on value for further clarity …

    I thought my impression on your outfits was interesting. Right off, I felt you looked stunning in both the all white and the black (darling on you!!) The blue, which is a great color on you and being medium is likely your value, etc … but I didn’t care for that so much … I mean you always look GREAT, but the other two just look WOW !!

  • Great examples – it always make more sense to me when I see the actual photos rather than reading the descriptions.

  • Hi, Imogen. I agree with the other comments. This is so must easier for me, too. I have always been a “visual” learner, & , being a retired sewing teacher, I think most women are. No matter how many times I print off the instructions & reread them, the drawings / pictures / photos always seem to click instantly!

  • Great post and you look wonderful in all the photos. If the aim is to see you rather than the clothes then my preference is the all blue outfit. Interestingly you are wearing relatively brighter colors but with medium to light value. In the black outfit the ‘wheely’ nice jacket seems to soften the black around your face. Thank you

  • Thank you for the great post. Great explanations as always. BTW, I just can’t get over how great you look as a blonde. I think I actually prefer it to the brunette, though that was nice also.

  • interesting how much hair colour matters! when you were a brunette, you said you didn’t look that good in a white jacket, even though your skin is rather light, so I’d have thought that adding contrast in some other way – white should still have worked?

  • You certainly look healthy and very pretty and slimmer in the lighter versions of yourself.
    So where does Deep, Cool, Soft fit in?
    I take my little swatch with me but I am still not sure.
    Deep, dark cool brown eyes, olive skin and dark brown hair are pretty boring if you don’t know what you’re doing and then you end up wearing lots of black because its easier than trying to stand there figuring out what’s what

    • I don’t understand your question Meredith about where does deep cool soft fit in?

      Deep means you need overall darker colours rather than all light colours. At least one dark coloured item in your outfit.
      Cool – means you want a cool undertone to all your colours
      Soft – means that you don’t’ want really bright colours, nor really greyed down and dull colours.

  • Apart from combining light, medium and dark colors…what about combining warm, neutral and cool colors? And what about combining pure, tints, tones and shades? (So pure colors or colors with with, grey or black added)

  • I thought greyed down colours would be soft – so not quite sure. Aren’t they just really soft?


    • Greyed down colours are soft – there are many words you can use to describe these colours – smoky, soft, muted, dusky, toned – they mean the same thing, just variety in the English language.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *