Light Summer

A Comprehensive Guide

Light Summer is even lighter than the typical Summer type. And even though this is a very delicate season, it's also very colourful.

Light Summer is one of the three Summer seasons and sits between Light Spring and True Summer on the seasonal flow chart.

Unlike Light Spring, this sub-season is cool. However, both sub-seasons share some colours as they are sister palettes. They are both a blend of Spring and Summer, with Light Spring leaning more towards the Spring palette and Light Summer leaning more towards the Summer palette.

Wardrobe Building Essentials
Everything you need to build a Light Summer wardrobe.

Characteristics

You are a Light Summer if the dominant characteristic of your overall appearance is light, and the secondary characteristic is cool – meaning cooler colours suit you better than warmer ones.

When you look in the mirror, the first thing you notice about your colouring is that there is a low contrast between skin, eyes, and hair. All of your features are very light.

This means that if you have dark eyes or dark hair, but you aren’t a person of colour, then you are most likely one of the darker seasons. If you are a person of colour, but you have very light colouring for your ethnicity, you may be a Light Summer.

In addition, your features have mainly cool (blue and grey) undertones.

The Features

I. Eyes

Light Summer eyes can be light grey, light blue, light azure, or a light green tone. There is no darkness about them and they generally have a cool, greyish undertone. Typical of the Summer eye, you may notice a crackled glass pattern and a soft separation between the iris and the whites of the eye.

II. Skin

Light Summer skin is either neutral or neutral-cool with beige or pinkish undertones. It ranges from fair to medium (I to III on the Fitzpatrick scale). You know you have neutral-cool skin if both gold and silver look good on you, but silver looks better.

III. Hair

Like the rest of the features, this sub-season’s hair is light. It can range from icy light to medium ash blonde or light ash brown. Typically, the hair does not have natural highlights. Many Light Summers were blonde as children but their hair has darkened with age.

IV. Contrast

Light Summer is a sub-season of very low contrast between skin, hair, and eyes. There is even a low contrast between the iris and the whites of the eye. In the images below, you can see how little difference in shades there is between the features. There are no dark areas anywhere.

Light Summer vs Light Spring

Due to the very low contrast and delicate appearance of the two light seasons, Light Summers may easily be mistaken for Light Springs. Both sub-seasons have a light colouring with very low contrast.

However, unlike Light Spring, Light Summer is cool as opposed to warm. The features do not have golden or peachy undertones but blue, beige, and grey ones. The hair is generally ash blonde or very light ash brown with no hints of gold or red. The appearance of Light Summer tends to be toned-down or “greyed out”, whereas Light Spring is brighter and clearer.

The Colour Palette

Light Summer is the season reminiscent of mild summer mornings full of coolness and gentleness. The sun’s rays only touch the dew drops on the awakened foliage and flowers. The sky is of the most muted tones with floating, fluffy clouds.

In terms of colours, the following images are representative of the light, dusty pastel colours that are part of the Light Summer colour palette:

The Palette

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True to this sub-season’s dominant characteristic, Light Summer colours are overall light in value. This is to match the low contrast level of the sub-season’s natural colouring. The palette includes medium-saturated, coolish colours, such as dusty pinks and soft blue-greens. There are no strong contrasts between the colours, only nuances.

Summer is on the whole a lighter palette than either Winter or Autumn – only Spring can compete on lightness – but Light Summers are best at the lightest end of this already relatively light palette.

And while this sub-season’s palette has the typical coolness that is characteristic of all the Summer types, it also has some of the warmth of its neighbouring season Spring. Moreover, Spring adds some brightness and saturation to the otherwise muted Summer palette.

Colour Dimensions

On the three dimensions of colour, Light Summer has the following properties:

Hue

The colours lean towards the cool end of the scale but are not extremely cool. This means they contain more blue than yellow undertones. So even if you choose yellow (which is the warmest colour of all), you will find only cooler shades that have a tint of blue.

Value

In line with Light Summer’s dominant characteristic, the colours are mainly light. Although you may find some darker shades, these are no truly dark colours on the palette. It’s important to note though that the very lightest colours are not included in the palette, which are Winter’s icy lights, closer to white than those of Light Summer.

Chroma

The colours are medium in chroma. This means they are neither extremely soft, nor extremely vibrant. They are, however, brighter and more saturated than those of the other two Summer types due to Spring’s influence on them.

Sister Palettes

Light Summer sits between Light Spring and True Summer on the seasonal flow chart. It falls at the Spring end of the Summer palette, which is why the colours are lighter, brighter, and warmer than those of True Summer. In fact, they are surprisingly un-summery in their level of saturation – almost bright enough to rival Light or Warm Spring’s palettes.

Compared to Light Spring, the colours are cooler, softer, and ever so slightly darker. Spring’s effect on Light Spring is to add warmth and brightness to the palette. Spring also lightens the colours a little compared to the other two Summer palettes.

The colours are neutral-cool like the third Summer sub-season Soft Summer’s, but they are brighter and lighter than the latter’s.

As sister palettes, Light Spring and True Summer both share Light Summer’s characteristics of light and cool, respectively. This means you can borrow some of their palettes’ colours as they are close enough to the Light Summer colour palette. On the Light Spring palette, opt for the cooler shades – such as provence or blue topaz. Whereas on the True Summer palette, choose the lighter colours – such as chardonnay and dutch canal.

Styling

Clothing

Even though technically you can combine any of the colours on your colour palette with each other, certain combinations will look much better than others:

Light Summers cannot handle a lot of contrast as it overwhelms their delicate appearance. Therefore, the best colour combinations for your outfits are those that complement each other. Why is that important?

Wearing colour combinations that reflect the contrast that exists in your natural appearance will complement it and will make you come alive in your outfits.

In order to create a delicate look, it is important for your clothing to echo your natural low level of contrast. This means that the colours you want to combine should not contrast too starkly with each other.

You could, for example, opt for a monochromatic look and combine slightly different shades of one hue – such a light blue with a medium blue. Or you could combine neighbouring hues with the same level of lightness – such as a light blue with a light blue-green.

Since you are a Summer, in general blues will look better on you than reds. But keeping your colours light is more important which means that you can wear some warmer shades – like peachy pinks borrowed from your sister palette Light Spring – as long as they are light.

Due to the lightness of your natural colouring, your least flattering colours are evidently dark. That means that true black is very unflattering on Light Summers and best avoided. Black near your face will make you look older and will make your delicate colouring disappear. The closest you have to black is a dark ash brown and dark greyish blues.

True white is also too harsh on you, and you are better off choosing chalky whites instead.

Colours to Avoid

Apart from white and black, avoid very bright and vibrant colours – such as intense oranges, that will overpower your natural softness and swallow you up. The same is true for extremely dark colours. Finally, stay away from very warm colours – such as warm yellows, oranges, and reds, as these will clash with your natural coolness.

Wardrobe Building Essentials
Everything you need to build a Light Summer wardrobe.

Patterns & Prints

If you are thinking of incorporating some patterns and prints into your wardrobe, consider the following:

The best patterns are those that only contain Light Summer colours – like in the first example below.

If a pattern contains some but not much colour from a disharmonious palette – like in the second example, you can also wear it.

The last example contains too much of a disharmonious colour (a Dark Autumn gold, which is dark and warm), so it’s best left alone.

Since your natural colouring is low-contrast, opt for patterns that reflect this natural low level of contrast rather than ones which are too bold.

In the example below, both patterns are in Light Summer colours and wearable. However, the second pattern displays a higher contrast between the elements and is therefore less flattering.

Great patterns for Light Summer are gentle and delicate – such as watercolour and floral textures, floral drawings, hand-drawn elements, and brush strokes.

The elements of the pattern should be small, dense, and loosely arranged.

Avoid ordered arrangements, big elements, and stiff geometric patterns – like in the first example.

Jewellery

Like your sister sub-season Light Spring, you can wear both warm and cool metals as long as they are light. Since you are on the cool side of neutral, silver will be more flattering on you, and it is a more foolproof choice.

Golds are better in lighter shades, and also more yellow than orange. Deep, rich golds will appear too heavy on you and orange ones too warm.

Really nice on Light Summers are pearls in silver and white gold. The pearl embodies this sub-season, incorporating its properties and shades and is thus the best ornament for Light Summer.

A beautiful stone for Light Summer is rose quartz. It is gentle, has a light pastel mist, and is diverse in its structure and shades. When choosing a rose quartz, make sure not to choose reddish tones that may highlight the pinkish undertone or possible redness in your skin.

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