Bright/Clear Winter: Color Palette, Capsule Wardrobe, and Ultimate Guide

Clear Winter is cool and bright and shares characteristics with winter and spring in the 12 season system of color analysis.

Clear Winter is a captivating seasonal blend that combines the cool undertones of winter with the high-contrast brightness of spring. This distinct category is part of the intricate 12-season color analysis system, designed to guide individuals like you in discovering your perfect color palette.

With its bold and clear tones, Clear Winter is especially suited for those who resonate with deep, vibrant colors that illuminate their natural features, creating a look that is both striking and harmoniously aligned with their cool undertones.

Are your features bright and cool with dark hair? Are you a contradiction with neutral skin and cool eyes? Do you love the clear colors of a warm winter day?

If this sounds like you, you might be a Clear Winter!

The is a comprehensive guide to clear winter in the 12 season system of color analysis. Keep reading to learn the physical characteristics, the best makeup, a beautiful color palette to wear, wardrobe staples, and how to create your own custom palette.

The 12 Seasons of Color Analysis

Seasonal color analysis provides a transformative approach to identify colors that enhance your look and increase your confidence. By closely analyzing your skin’s undertones, eye colors, and hair shade, this method places you into one of twelve distinct color families.

The result? A thoughtfully curated palette of colors that highlight your natural attractiveness and offer a refreshing surge of self-assurance.

In this system, six key color components serve as the foundation: warm, cool, deep, light, soft, and bright. Within the cool spectrum, the Winter color family stands out for its medium to dark, saturated colors.

The winter color family includes deep winter, cool winter, and clear winter.

Today, we’re covering into the striking beauty of Clear Winter—a palette that masterfully balances cool undertones with bright chroma.

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Clear Winter is Cool and Bright

Clear Winter is classified in the following ways: cool hue, dark value, bright chroma.

  • Cool hue – the undertone is always blue, but various overtones of peach or yellow may give a warmer appearance, causing confusion when determining the difference between clear spring and clear winter.
  • Dark value – clear winter is typically medium-deep in value. Their best colors are usually a few degrees lighter than the depth found in deep winter.
  • Bright chroma – clear winter is one of the brightest, most saturated seasons in color analysis. 
Clear Winter Color Attributes

Clear winter differs from its fellow winter seasons in that chroma is the primary characteristic. Although there is definite coolness, there is an overall brightness to the features.

Clear Winter individuals often have a striking contrast in their complexion, ranging from porcelain to deep beige with a cool undertone that radiates a natural glow. This season includes a diverse array of skin tones, where women of color may present with lighter shades relative to their ethnicity, showcasing a vibrant, luminescent quality to their skin.

The eyes will typically be a bright blue color, with some green or gray. Occasionally the eyes will be a light amber color. The clear winter eye often has either the green spring ring or the winter white overlay pattern.

The common presentation for Clear Winter individuals includes hair colors ranging from medium to dark brown, often highlighted with cool-toned whites or subtle golds, but distinctly lacking in red shades. It’s important to note that ultimately, it is the skin tone that determines one’s seasonal color analysis, making hair color a tertiary consideration in identifying the Clear Winter palette. 

Clear winter hair and eyes.

The features are very high contrast and if taking a grayscale picture, the hair and skin would be very different. There is a clear striking quality to the entirety of the bright winter features.

Makeup for the Clear Winter Woman

To emphasize the features of clear winter, makeup colors should be both cool and bright as well.

The best makeup for clear winter.

For the eyes, choose light neutrals such as silver, mauve and gold, or charcoal and pewter. Accent colors could be purple, soft teal, and aegean.

For the cheeks, neutral warm shades of rose, deep pink, and coral are wonderful to bring out a bright glow for clear winter.

Nude lips are out for clear winter, as they are underwhelming next to winter contrast. Stick with bubblegum or rose for a natural look, along with cranberry. For a bold lip choose sangria, ruby, or deep red.

Avoid warm tones like orange or brown lipstick, warm pink and orange eye shadows, and bronze cheek colors. Clear winter should also stay away from light lip colors.

Inspiration: The Bright Beauty of Clear Winter

Clear Winter is celebrated for its brilliant spectrum of cool colors that distinctly set it apart from other seasons. Known for its brightly saturated cool toned primary colors like the brilliance of rainforest creatures. Since it’s in the cool color family, it’s heavy with blues, purples, pinks, and greens.

Clear Winter wears the rainbow.

Visual Inspirations

Here we explore various elements that capture the vibrant essence of Clear Winter. 

Clear Winter showcases a vivid, cool spectrum, captured beautifully in a modified six-color ROYGBV rainbow, where traditional orange is replaced with a striking pink to emphasize the cool, saturated tones of this palette.

The view of a tranquil mountain lake, clear teal and jade waters reflecting the pure, vibrant essence of Clear Winter, highlighting its cool, deep shades. 

The crystalline appearance of sugar rock candy displays brilliant purples and vivid pinks, capturing the lively and sharp essence of this season. 

The vibrant life of an underwater reef illustrates the serene yet striking blues central to Clear Winter.

A lush berry dessert showcases the deep, vibrant reds typical of Clear Winter, similar to the rich reds of pomegranate seeds. 

Each of these images directly reflects the cool, vibrant, and full-of-life nature of the Clear Winter palette.

Clear Winter Color Palette

Clear Winter Color Palette

In creating a palette for clear winter we start with neutrals, and work through the major color families.

Black and white make a central appearance in the winter color family, as do most shades of dark and light gray. Midnight navy, nude, and ivory are also flattering neutrals for this bright season bordering spring.

Reds are wonderful for clear winter so long as they are close to true red, along with neutral and blue based pinks. Yellows are difficult, but lemon line, lemon, and marigold can be worn . Many greens with a hint of blue are amazing on a clear winter. Blues and purples should be brilliant, and make up the core of the palette.

There is usually a version of every color that can be worn by any season, but some may be more difficult to match and find. Pinks can easily become too muted, reds can be a bit orange, and greens may be too yellow.

There are some colors that  clear winter should always avoid. Gray is a very difficult color to wear as it is naturally muted. Soft pastels are not suitable for the clear winter woman as they create a washed out look. 

Cool brilliant colors, especially jade and fuchsia, are the best colors in the palette.

Clear Winter Best and Worst Colors

Choosing Prints for Clear Winter 

Choosing the right patterns can significantly enhance your Clear Winter style. Your patterns should harmonize with your vibrant color palette and match your scale and contrast levels to highlight your features in the most attractive manner. Here’s the approach to get it just right:

  • Color Consistency: Ensure that less than 10% of the colors in your print fall outside your Clear Winter palette. This maintains a cohesive and harmonious appearance.
  • Scale: Opt for prints with a medium to large scale. Bold, large shapes are perfect to represent the high contrast of Clear Winter.
  • Contrast Level: Stick with high-contrast prints. The brighter and more saturated, the better. Complementary colors are great here!

Following these tips will boost your Clear Winter wardrobe and increase your confidence in selecting patterns. Below, you’ll find a collection of curated images that perfectly demonstrate these guidelines.

Clear winter Prints

Wardrobe Essentials for Bright and Cool Coloring

No matter your style or personal aesthetic, there are a few items that every woman should have in their wardrobe.

The basics of any wardrobe should be neutrals, and you could certainly choose all neutrals. Layering similar shades of the same color will create a rich luxe look.

For those that enjoy a more colorful look, the basics are still appropriate, but fun and funky accessories in the pink, red, purple, and blue families will add interest.

Clear Winter wardrobe essentials capsule wardrobe

Click here to shop the Clear Winter wardrobe essentials.

Frequently Asked Questions about Clear Winter

Can clear/bright winter wear gold or rose gold?

Clear winter types can wear gold and rose gold, although silver metals will be better overall. This type is neutral cool, which means the warm metals will be fine.

Can clear/bright winter wear brown?

Clear winter types can wear brown, although most of them are naturally too muted to suit this season. A very dark espresso or rich bold cognac can be integrated into the bright winter color palette.

Can clear/bright winter wear yellow?

There is a perfect yellow for every season, and clear winter is no different. Choose bright neutral versions such as lemon or acid yellow.

Can clear/bright winter wear coral?

Coral is a slightly warm version of pink, but many clear winter types can pull off this spring color due to their lean towards neutral.

Can clear/bright winter wear beige?

Beige is going to be a difficult color for bright winter, being both medium in contrast and chroma. Beige is a great neutral, but should be left to other seasons.

Can I still wear black?

Of COURSE you can still wear black. I personally believe that black is a staple in any wardrobe. Any season can wear black, but some may find it is overwhelming, like soft or light seasons. Fortunately that isn’t the case for winter women, so happily continue wearing black. You’ll have an easy time creating a capsule wardrobe based on black!

What is the difference between clear winter and dark winter?

Clear winter and dark winter are both cool and dark seasons. The primary difference between these two comes down to which you need more: contrast or depth. I have seen many women who look like dual clear/deep, but ultimately they either have to have high contrast, or they have to have dark colors. The attributes of an individual decide which season works best.

I hate these colors, could my season be wrong?

Yes absolutely, it could be true. But I want to challenge you, what is it that you hate? Is it the neutrals that you don’t like? Perhaps you don’t like white? Refer back to my statements above about wearing black. Is it one of the color families, pink or green perhaps? Don’t wear them! Just because a palette includes all these colors doesn’t mean you should wear them all. I dare you to look at your closet and see if you naturally gravitate to any of these colors. If the answer is no, and you still feel this is completely wrong, let me know! I can help!

How Do I Build a Clear Winter Capsule Wardrobe? Building a Clear Winter capsule wardrobe is a streamlined process when you focus on your season’s best colors. Start with your neutrals like black, white, and navy which will serve as the foundation of your wardrobe. Then, add in your main color and 2-3 accent colors from the Clear Winter palette. Colors like cobalt, fuchsia, or purple work well.

Here’s a simple guide to create a color palette include:

  1. Base Colors: Charcoal and white smoke
  2. Dark Neutral: Black or Navy
  3. Light Neutral: White or soft white
  4. Main Color: Choose one from bright blue or pink
  5. Accent Colors: Pick 2-3 from your palette, like greens, purples, or reds

Can I only wear these colors?

No way! You should wear what you love! If you want to wear lavender, then go for it! You may find, however, that learning your season affects how other colors make you feel. If you feel confident rocking a color, then it’s yours to own. But if you don’t, feel free to leave it to the seasons that wear it well. If you’re looking to expand your palette, you can also consider sister seasons.

The following are sister seasons for clear winter:

Icy aurora colors.
Cool Winter
Bold neon colors.
Clear Spring

Clear Winter Colors for the Whole Year

When borrowing from other seasons, it’s helpful to consider those which share attributes. Many women like to choose colors that help them feel in touch with the calendar season, like pink in spring. For Clear Winter, the following borrowing recommendations work across the whole year.

In Spring, borrow from clear spring for slightly brighter colors of a fresh start.

In Summer, borrow colors from cool winter to embody the lighter feel of summer.

In Fall, borrow colors from deep winter to lean into the warmth of a roaring fire.

In Winter, stick with any colors in the three winter seasons. 

Clear Winter Year Round Colors

Action Steps for Embracing Your Clear Winter Palette

  1. Identify Your Colors: Start by familiarizing yourself with the Clear Winter color palette. Keep it handy on your phone or print it out for quick reference when shopping. Buy the Clear Winter guide here to go deeper.
  2. Purge Your Closet: Remove items that are far from your Clear Winter colors or don’t make you feel good. Consider donating or reselling them.
  3. Invest in Neutrals: Buy wardrobe staples in your best neutral colors like black, white, and navy. These will be the backbone of your wardrobe.
  4. Choose Your Best Colors: Pick 2-3 signature colors from your Clear Winter palette that you love the most. These will give your capsule wardrobe some variety.
  5. Plan Your Capsule: Following the 100 Piece Wardrobe Framework, build a capsule wardrobe around your neutrals and accent colors. Aim for versatility and cohesiveness.
  6. Shop Smart: When shopping for new items, always have your palette in mind. This will save you both time and money in the long run.
  7. Trial and Adjust: Don’t be afraid to experiment a bit. Wear your new colors and pay attention to the compliments you receive and how you feel in them. Make adjustments as needed.
  8. Seek Guidance: If you’re struggling to implement your Clear Winter palette, consider seeking professional help. A color analysis session can be a transformative experience.
  9. Celebrate You: Remember, God made you beautiful in your unique way. Embrace your Clear Winter attributes as a reflection of His creativity.

By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to simplifying your wardrobe while looking your best, feeling confident, and honoring your uniqueness.

Final Thoughts on Clear Winter

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about the lovely attributes of clear winter. These individuals are truly beautiful in their strikingly cool brilliance. They can wear highly saturated colors that are unflattering on most others.

This guide has provided you with information on colors that work well with your skin tone, makeup that brings out your best features, and tips for assembling a capsule wardrobe that suits your bright winter qualities.

Are you a Clear Winter? If so, say hello in the comments!

Related Color Analysis Articles:

Clear Winter Grid Palette

Clear Winter sits on the cusp of winter and spring and is cool and bright.

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  1. Having trouble deciding if I am bright winter or bright spring. Are there any tell tale signs that differentiate them? As a kid I was golden blond, aqua eyes but darker brows. Dont look good in muted tones and come alive in brights. As I’ve gotten older, golden hair color looks wrong. Should I be flowing into winter as I age?

    1. Hi Dixie!

      It’s uncommon to change out of the 4 seasons unless you were typed wrong initially. Golden blonde suggests clear spring is prob accurate. If your hair is getting lighter you may benefit from some of the lighter bright colors of Light Spring! Hope that helps!

    2. Yes. That’s what I did. I was a Bright Spring in 1985, and after menopause came yellowish graying light brown hair. I tinted it back to the glossy medium brown of my youth, switched to Bright Winter, and got nonstop compliments.

  2. I’m also having a hard time trying to decide between Clear Spring and Clear Winter. I know positively that I look drained of all life in gray, with the exception of a very dark charcoal. I love bright pure pigment colors on me, but the cooler colors are better. My hair when I was younger was a very dark burgundy auburn and I have white Irish skin, with no true undertone. My eye is totally cool having both gray and brown colors, looks like a winter eye to me, but I could be wrong.

    1. Hi Myrna! Clear seasons (like all the crossover seasons) have a bit more trouble landing on the cool or warm side. Colorless qualities in the skin are definitely a winter quality! And hating gray is assuredly a clear attribute (I’m a Clear Winter and agree on the gray!)

  3. Could you help me? I am of Scottish and Irish descent, with naturally fair skin with freckles and rosy cheeks. In the summer, my arms do tan a Mauve. Say peachy..and my face gets extra color, but that’s not my legs stay super white! I have eyes that range from bright blue to almost a soft blue gray, depending. When I was a small child, I had Strawberry Blonde hair, leaning more towards the red than blonde. And it gradually darkened, until at the age of 5 it was so deep brown that it was almost black. When I hit puberty, it lightened up just slightly to a deep brown with auburn glints in the summer. I feel my aura is winter, but I’m one of those who due to my contrast, could fit in multiple seasons. Definitely cool or clear. I feel best in deep purples, teals, truer classic reds (containing no orange), charcoal, black and white. I always choose either Mauve or rich reds for lips and nails. I felt shades of brown looked best for eye shadows, but as I age, I’m leaning more towards just lighter, brighter ivories, golds, or slight hues of browns or mauves.

    1. Hi Miranda!

      It’s common for those in the overlap seasons (clear/soft/dark/light) to experience some discrepancies in their skin such as picking up a slight tan. You’re describing high contrast, which is most at home in winter and the clear seasons! The only way to know for sure is to test drapes!


  4. Hi Stacey — like the other commenters, I have always had trouble determining my color. I do generally have high contrast between hair, eyes, and skin, but I have quite a few freckles on my face and arms and will get a light tan in the summer. My eyes are a bright blue-green but contain large flecks of gold/hazel around the iris, and my natural medium-brown hair definitely has more of a reddish tint than a black one.

    In short, I have fair skin with freckles and hair/eyes that contain traits that are both distinctly warm and distinctly cool. I look best in brighter jewel tones, but orange is also one of my best colors and this has always made me think maybe I am not a winter. Any thoughts on other colorings to consider? Or would I overall be a clear winter?

    1. Hey Katelyn,

      Orange is a pretty specific color to the warm seasons! Most winters won’t gravitate to it or look great in it. A coral is about as close as a clear winter will get! Clear Spring might actually be your best season!

  5. I was typed as a bright winter but I feel like I was typed wrong. Hot pink does make me pop and I haven’t given too many bright colors a chance BUT I feel like I come to life in rich deep colors like wine/burgundy and deep green. Could be personal preference taking a hold of me though. I saw that the rich colors are in the deep winter category. Can the winters basically pull off each other’s color palettes pretty well?

      1. Thank you for this comment. I had super high contrast when I was young – black hair and very fair skin. Now that I color my gray hair, I go to dark brown. I seem to wear the bright, clear colors best, but I don’t have “sparkly bright eyes.” They are a warm hazel, which puts me in the Dark winter category. But those colors look heavy on me. Any ideas?

        1. Hey Eugnenia!

          You don’t have to have bright eyes, although it’s more common. Your skin ultimately decides what you need, and if it’s clear colors then it’s clear colors 🙂

  6. Hi Stacey! I’m so torn between my coloring. I have a neutral skin tone with yellow and pink undertones (I burn in the sun) My natural hair color is an ashy brown but truly I have been able to wear any hair color but lean more to golden brown. I get the most compliments when I wear royal blue and red but doesn’t my yellow based skin make me more a spring? Help! A confused maybe clear winter or spring 🙂

    1. Hey Jennifer!! There is always a fine line between the neutral seasons. For these two in question, it probably comes down to whether or not black is overwhelming, but also if you an handle orange (spring) or not (winter). Obviously it’s always more complex, but those are pretty quick ways to see which way you’re leaning!

  7. I really appreciate the ‘colors for the whole year’ section. As a winter, I often have a hard time seeing the lightness in the palette. I know it’s there but when I’m trying to put together an outfit for Easter or a summer vacay, I get depressed at all the black and darker blues and purples. That spring palette is gorgeous and blooming with wearable colors, and the summer one is as lustrous as the jewel tones of winter.

  8. Hi Stacey, I have really enjoyed your information. I am still struggling to find my season, like many of the other commenters. My hair was dark brown as a girl and young woman. Now it is slowing changing to a bright white/silver which I think is making this very hard to decide. My skin has always been rather pale but I do tan after burning first. I cannot determine definitively whether my skin is warm or cool but neutral seems rare. My eyes are green. Any help is appreciated!

    1. Hey Gaelyn, I have a really affordable DIY color analysis course that you can use to find your season. It teaches you how to analyze using multiple areas plus draping. Hope this helps!

  9. Have you any simple test (like the orange-black thing) for telling between clear and deep winter?

    My eyes look very close to your first example on here; my hair is a darkish ash brown with a little gold but mostly silver highlighting. My skin is very pale, very little tanning and a lot of burning, a lot of rosiness, and cool-neutral undertones. I thought that I was closest to deep winter (black and white, but not orange or most yellows), but then I kept finding that a brighter shade worked better. However, a few of the mid-range brights (like true red) don’t work that well: I do much better with a fully saturated wine shade. Bright purple and pink work extremely well, though.

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