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The Image Architect has been featured in numerous magazines and publications, here are some of them below:


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This article was published September 2013 in
Tidewater Women

Click here to view the article as it originally appeared.

colorme1

Whether you are a woman just entering the workforce, the first woman to rise up the ranks and head your department or company, or one negotiating multi-million dollar deals, the impression that you make is going to determine the outcome. An important part of that impression is influenced by the colors you choose.

You think you choose colors that make you look good. You think you choose what you wear based on the results in the mirror. You don't. Your color and fashion choices resonate from the depths of your primitive DNA. Socio-biologists tell us that your decisions about what you wear are based on the most basic survival instincts. It's in your DNA.

In other words, you dress to be safe. Figuratively speaking, when you leave the cave each morning, you dress to keep dangerous predators from noticing you. We do it all over the world.

• Big city inhabitants dress in the dark colors of tall skyscrapers.

• In the South, everyone wears floral prints and pastels.

• People in the Midwest adorn themselves in earthy tones.

• In the Southwest, desert colors like terra cotta and mustard yellow prevail.

Our efforts to go unnoticed aren't confined to colors. Abraham Lincoln wore a stovepipe hat so he would blend in with the skyline that was dotted with stovepipes. Houses were heated with coal in that era, so it was a safe "camouflage."

It's hard to be objective about yourself when it comes to choosing colors that make you look better. Asking a trusted friend for help may not yield any better results. Both you and your friends are likely to be mesmerized by "false harmony" and can't reliably evaluate what truly looks good on you.

False harmony is the term for the method used by nearly the entire world for choosing colors. False harmony occurs every time you:

• Wear garments that match your superficial appearance. For example, wearing pale colors to "match" your pale skin and hair. It's called harmony, but it's actually monotony, and the face disappears into the garments because there is no contrast between face and garments. Opt for fuchsia and ditch baby pink!

• Wear drab moss green garments because you have "matching" green eyes. This color is popular, but it's unflattering to most people because of its drabness.

• Wear pastels because you have a soft feminine "matching" personality. Pastels are often viewed as passive. Ramp up your colors and you'll make more impact!

• Wear rust because you have "matching" red hair. In reality, this color is one of the worst colors for a redhead because it makes her skin look sickly pale. The garment also competes with the hair for attention; hair always loses! It's far better to wear royal purple and let the hair pop and the face glow with vibrant color.

False harmony has been around forever. It's deeply imbedded in your ancient survival instincts, serving to keep you from standing out too much. This instinct trumps "good taste" every time.

Fashion designers, makeup artists, stylists, and image consultants are all under the spell of false harmony. They rave over washed-out pale blondes in baby pink, strawberry blondes in coral, and brown-skinned beauties in brown-toned leopard prints.

Modern-day image and color consultants compound the error of our ways. Color analysis burst on the scene in the 1980s and every book on the subject promised to make getting dressed easier. They did. You simply wore colors that matched your personality or your superficial appearance—specifically your hair and eye color.

They also promised to make you look better. In retrospect, a few people did. However, for most, it caused confusion and didn't work. Redheads weren't certain whether they were Autumns or Springs. A myriad of blondes from New York City and Paris noticed that they could wear black, contrary to what all the "experts" said. A great many people wondered why some colors, periwinkle blue, for example, were relegated to all four seasons.

Yet, the color concept caught on because at a certain level, it made us feel smug. "I knew it," said all the redheads. "Rust, coral, and camel are my colors!"

Blondes read it and smiled. "Yes, I've always known pastels were for me; especially blush pink." Sandy-haired men confirmed that their light brown suits were better than navy blue or black.

Raven-haired beauties read that they were among the few who truly looked good in black, so they were especially smug. They knew it all along.

In reality, dressing to match the superficial appearance feels safe because we don't stand out too much. It seems so natural, and no wonder. We're simply doing what our primitive ancestors have always done.

Today, survival depends on being noticed. If you're applying for a job or vying for a promotion, you need to stand out from the competition so you'll be remembered.

Here are a few tried and proven methods for looking memorable and attractive:

• Avoid drab colors. They make you look drab. This includes moss green, mustard yellow, most beiges and browns, and drab shades of teal and burgundy.

• The majority of people look better in cool colors than warm ones. Wear cool navy blue suits instead of warm brown or beige ones, for example.

• Primary colors suit the majority of people. Wear black, navy, and charcoal for basics, but also consider jewel tones. Remember, food colors like lemon, lime, orange and pea green are warm and less classy than cool jewel tones such as ruby, emerald, amethyst, sapphire, and magenta. Tailored garments look more powerful and professional. Men, make certain your suit and shirt collar do not pull away noticeably at the neck. Women, avoid garments that are shapeless and made of limp fabrics.

• Experts agree that professional makeup gives you more credibility and clout. It also gets you 17 percent higher income. Avoid unflattering brown-toned lipstick, gaudy blue eye shadow and, especially, black eyeliner, which only makes the eyes look smaller, even mean. Powerful women wear lipstick, and favored colors are fuchsia and cherry red. Take the time to find a foundation that goes with your undertone, so it looks translucent. There's nothing worse than makeup that looks heavy and orange-toned.

Today there aren't any ferocious predators lurking at our doorsteps, so it's okay to stop dressing to look invisible. We don't need to match our superficial appearance. We don't need to match our surroundings either, so get out there and start turning heads today!

Sandy Dumont has spent a lifetime researching the effect color has on our judgment of others. She's been a model and image consultant for Fortune 500 companies. Her eBook "Color Me Correctly, Please" is the culmination of her years of research and hands-on experience. Sandy's eBook is available on her website: www.theimagearchitect.com.

Published July 21, 2013 in:

beauty

Click here to view the article as it originally appeared.

Emma Stone was born blonde but dyed her hair auburn brown in order to get more mature acting rolls.


In the photo on right, no doubt a Hollywood stylist suggested she wear warm makeup and garments in first Emma Stone burnette1-300x336photo, due to the red tones in her hair. She is a beautiful woman in any color hair or garment, but the warm colors don't do her justice. Look closely and you'll see that her skin is splotchy and less natural looking than in the photo below.

 

 

Emma Stone
In the photo below, Emma wears cool makeup and garments. She looks breathtakingly beautiful and natural.

Emma-Stone-burnette2-300x187

Emma Stone

Sandy-Dumont-photo-EmmaStone2Blonde-300x127
In the photo above you'll see Emma with blonde hair in both warm and cool colors.
To the left, Emma wears warm foundation and blusher, once again causing some splotchiness and harshness. Her lipstick is cool, so the colors fight. She looks the loveliest and most natural in the photo to on the right, with cool makeup.


Tip for Emma: Give up the black eyeliner. It makes your eyes look smaller. Learn to do the smoky eye and it will open your eyes.

Sandy Dumont is an internationally-known image consultant who has spoken on three continents. She is also the author of "Seven Days to a Brand New you," a book for women. She has also produced several DVDs and boxed sets on the subject of image. You can contact her at www.TheImageArchitect.com.

Originally published May 28, 2013 "St. Louis County Legal Ledger". Read the original article here.

By Sandy Dumont, The Image Architect –

Whether you are a woman just entering the workforce, the first woman to rise up the ranks and head your department or company, or one negotiating multimillion dollar deals, the impression that you make is going to determine the outcome. An important part of that impression is influenced by the colors you choose.

It's hard to be objective about yourself when it comes to choosing colors that make you look better. Asking a trusted friend for help may not yield any better results. Evidence mounts to suggest the following about advice from friends:

  • They will dislike you in a color that they personally do not care for
  • They'll almost always adore blondes in pastel pink or peach
  • If you're a redhead, they'll choose rust, orange or coral for you
  • If you have brown hair, they'll love you in beige and brown

What's wrong with all those things you may ask? The answer may confound you. Both you and your friends are likely to be mesmerized by "false harmony" and can't reliably evaluate what truly looks good on you.

False harmony is the term for the method used by nearly the entire world for choosing colors. False harmony occurs every time you:

  • Wear garments that match your superficial appearance. For example, wearing pale colors to "match" your pale skin and hair. It's called harmony, but it's actually monotony, and the face disappears into the garments because there is no contrast between face and garments. Opt for fuchsia and ditch baby pink!
  • Wear drab moss green garments because you have "matching" green eyes. This color is popular, but it's unflattering to most people because of its drabness.
  • Wear pastels because you have a soft feminine "matching" personality. Pastels are often viewed as passive. Ramp up your colors and you'll make more impact!
  • Wear rust because you have "matching" red hair. In reality, this color is one of the worst colors for a redhead, because it makes her skin look sickly pale. The garment also competes with the hair for attention - hair loses! It's far better to wear royal purple and let the hair pop and the face glow with vibrant color.

False harmony has been around forever. It's deeply imbedded in your DNA, serving to keep you from standing out too much -- a real No- No for ancient, but ever present, survival instincts. According to sociobiologists, this instinct trumps every other instinct you have.

Fashion designers, makeup artists, stylists, and image consultants are all under the spell of false harmony. They rave over pale blondes in baby pink, vibrant strawberry blondes in coral, and brown-skinned beauties in brown-toned leopard prints.

Over the years, a lot of methods and "solutions" have been proposed for finding the colors that make you look better. The most infamous methods include: hair and eye color; freckle color; contrast factors between skin and hair; patterns in the eyes; the shape of the face; and even the personality. None of these are reliable.

If the goal is helping YOU look better, why is it you aren't ever asked to look at the face for clues? The face, after all, is the focal point of every human being.

For example, "Tammy" has green eyes, pale skin, yellowy freckles, blonde hair, and an introverted personality. These characteristics tell her not to wear her best colors; bright cool colors like fuchsia, magenta, purple and cherry red. They suggest she wear warm colors that are bright, like lime green and coral; along with cool colors that are muted, including slate blue and sea foam green. In reality, the only colors that make Tammy look better are bright cool colors, such as the ones mentioned above.

When you make color choices based on what happens to your skin, you'll be flabbergasted. Once you begin to notice what happens to the face in terms of shadows, circles, furrows and diminished luminosity, you'll notice things you never noticed before. You'll very likely see for yourself that the colors you fear or dislike the most make you look the best. You'll also see that you look younger, prettier and more dynamic in those colors. The biggest "aha" you may have is the awareness that you don't really know what you look good in.

Try the same test as Tammy. You'll be just as happy. Another good test is with a muted slate blue and a clear bright royal blue. After a couple of tests, you'll begin to notice changes with your face. You will know for an absolute certainty that you are on the road to looking better! Most often, the color changes are quite simple:

  • Switch from drab colors to clear primary tones
  • Switch from colors that blend with your superficial appearance to ones that give good contrast so your face pops.
  • Reconsider the tendency to choose colors that match your personality. For example, earthy tones for sporty types; pastels for shy or fair-skinned types.

Free yourself from the bondage of false harmony. It may sound logical and make you feel safe. It may not make you look better in the mirror. If you're attracted to slate blue, make a comparison with royal blue. If you're in love with rust, make a comparison with royal purple or even royal blue!

Sandy Dumont is an internationally recognized expert on color and color psychology. Her long-awaited book, "Color Me Correctly, Please," the culmination of a lifetime of research, will be released late April 2012 and available at Amazon or her website, www.theimagearchitect.com.

Originally published June 2, 2013 "Put Old on Hold". Read the original article here.

Sandy Dumont's New Book: Internationally recognized image consultant, Sandy Dumont (The Image Architect) has a new book, Color Me Correctly, Please that will change your mind about everything you ever thought you knew about color, makeup, and how to dress for success. When I started to read the book it was my intention to speed read through it but it didn't take long for me to take time and think about and appreciate Sandy's expertise, page by page. The time and effort she has put into Color Me Correctly, Please is amazing. There are lots of before and after photos, color swatches and you can order a kit to help you determine your best colors. They may be radically different from what you think they are. Download the book here

Originally published April 1, 2013 "Getting Better at 50". Read the original article here.

By Sandy Dumont, The Image Architect –

Sociobiologists tell us that buried deep inside all of us, we have compelling urges related to survival. Nearly everything we do and every decision we make is related to these survival instincts. It’s in our DNA.

You think you choose colors that make you look good. You think you choose what you wear based on the results in the mirror. You don’t. Your color and fashion choices resonate from the depths of your primitive DNA. Your decisions about what you wear are based on the most basic survival instincts.

In other words, you dress to be safe. Figuratively speaking, when you leave the cave each morning, you dress to keep dangerous predators from noticing you. We do it all over the world:

  • Big city inhabitants dress in the dark colors of tall skyscrapers.
  • In the South, everyone wears floral prints and pastels.
  • People in the Midwest adorn themselves in earthy tones.
  • In the Southwest, desert colors like terracotta and mustard yellow prevail.

It isn’t confined to colors. Abraham Lincoln wore a stovepipe hat so he would blend in with the skyline that was dotted with stovepipes. Houses were heated with coal in that era, so it was a safe “camouflage.”

Modern-day image and color consultants compound the error of our ways. Color analysis burst on the scene in the 1980s and every book on the subject promised to make getting dressed easier. They did. You simply wore colors that matched your personality or your superficial appearance – specifically your hair and eye color.

They also promised to make you look better. In retrospect, a few people did. However, for most, it caused confusion and didn’t work. Redheads weren’t certain whether they were Autumns or Springs. A myriad of blondes from New York City and Paris noticed that they could wear black, contrary to what all the “experts” said. A great many people wondered why every season could wear one or two identical colors.

Yet, the color concept caught on, because at a certain level, it made us feel smug. “I knew it,” said all the redheads. “Rust, coral and camel are my colors!”

Blondes read it and smiled. “Yes, I’ve always known pastels were for me; especially blush pink.” Sandy-haired men confirmed that their light brown suits were better than navy blue or black.

Raven-haired beauties read that they were among the few who truly looked good in black, so they were especially smug. They knew it all along.

In reality, dressing to match the superficial appearance feels safe, because we don’t stand out too much. It seems so natural, and no wonder. We’re simply doing what our primitive ancestors have always done.

The truth is, it’s a terrible way to choose colors for yourself. Today’s “survival” is different from our cave dweller days. Today, survival depends on being noticed. If you’re applying for a job or vying for a promotion, you need to stand out from the competition so you’ll be remembered.

Because there’s so much confusion out there, here are a few tried and proven methods for looking memorable and attractive:

  • Avoid drab colors. They make you look drab. This includes moss green, mustard yellow, most beiges and browns, and drab shades of teal and burgundy.
  • The majority of people look better in cool colors than warm ones. Wear cool navy blue suits instead of warm brown or beige ones, for example.
  • Primary colors suit the majority of people. Wear black, navy & charcoal for your basic “darks. Consider jewel tones also. Remember, food colors like lemon, lime, orange and pea green are warm and less classy than cool jewel tones such as ruby, emerald, amethyst, sapphire and magenta. Tailored garments look more powerful and professional. Avoid garments that are shapeless and made of limp fabrics.
  • Women: Experts agree that professional makeup gives you more credibility and clout. It also gets you 17% higher income. Avoid brown lipstick, black eyeliner that looks too Goth, garish eye shadow colors like turquoise, blue and green. Monochromatic shades of brown look more sophisticated and professional.
  • Good grooming is important. Avoid wrinkled garments, unkempt or dated hairstyles, scruffy shoes, dirty nails.

These days, there aren’t any ferocious predators lurking at our doorsteps, so it’s okay to stop dressing to look invisible. We don’t need to match our superficial appearance. We don’t need to match our surroundings either. That means it’s okay to say No to grey-toned or colorless garments in the “colorless” winter.

On the other hand, we needn’t wear neon or acid colors in the spring either. Tulip yellow, lime green and bright orange are among the most difficult colors to wear. Emerald green and fuchsia are more flattering tones, even if they aren’t seen until summertime.

Summer is, in fact, the season with the most flattering colors. They’re also the scariest colors to our DNA’s ancient survival mode. Colors like peacock blue, Chinese blue, royal blue, bright emerald green, red, purple and red violet.

The brightest season of the year has the brightest colors. Perhaps kindly Mother Nature, knowing of our fear of bright colors, gave us one moment in time to express our innermost feelings of joy by wearing bold and exciting colors.

Colors reflect moods; that’s been known for centuries. If you want to know the power of colors, ask a psychiatrist, not a stylist. Release yourself from outdated urges and think like a brand. Powerful brands don’t come packaged in plain brown wrappers, do they?

You do know the colors you look good in. You’ve just sabotaged yourself for the best of all reasons: survival. In this century, the dress code for survival is different. Survival in a competitive market demands that you walk into a room and own it. You won’t do that in boring beige.

Sandy Dumont is a certified image consultant with 30 years experience working with Fortune 500 companies and their staff. She has spoken on three continents and has produced numerous books and DVDs. Her latest publication “Color Me Correctly, Please” will be released Spring 2013. Contact her at www.theimagearchitect.com and sandydumont.com