Which Unicorn Hair Color Is Right For YOU?

Like clockwork, magazines publish articles on which hair shades work best for which skin tones. Most of the time, they focus on the natural range between platinum blonde and deep black. Well, this is the year of unicorn hair, and such limited advice simply won’t do. But, if you’re craving a rainbow-tinted head, it’s hard enough to decide which color to pick, let alone whether you want a pastel, a jewel tone, or an even deeper shade.

Wondering what unseen-in-nature tint would look best on you? Experts agree that, just like with natural hues, the answer is in your skin tone. Roxie Darling, a hair colorist at Hairstory Studio in New York City, advises: “Anyone can wear any color, but it’s all about placement and saturation…The way to go about this is doing something that will make you look your best.”

Interest piqued? We’ve put together a guide to finding the right bold, colorful shades for your skin tone — making you the best unicorn you can be.

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Photo: Nils Jorgensen/REX USA.
Fair Skin With Cool Undertones
“Whatever you put onto your [hair] will project itself onto your skin tone,” Darling says. So, if you’ve got pink undertones, it’s time to flaunt 'em — light-pink dyes will complement the hues in your face. Darling specifically recommends "sunset tones," like strawberry and even orange. Got freckles? Darling says peach would be perfect.
Julianne Hough chose the perfect pastel pink for her fair, cool-toned skin and bright blue eyes.
Bella Hadid fooled her fans with this true-to-life wig that had hints of strawberry pink. And we see why — the blonde was so flattering to her skin tone.
Real bosses match their hair color to their lipstick.
Can't decide between red or pink hair? Choose both.
Photo: David Fisher/REX USA.
Fair Skin With Warm Undertones
If your skin has a golden glow, jump on the blue-hues train, ASAP. Think pastels like lavender, baby blue, and aqua. And, consider yourself lucky, since mermaid hair is totally in vogue.
There isn't a color that Halsey can't rock — but we're especially partial to torquoise.
PHOTO: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images.
Blunt bangs and lobs aren't always easy to pull off, but Irene Kim does it perfectly... and in purple, too.
These pastel rainbow shades are stunning — yet still subtle — on bleached hair.
This two-toned pastel hairdo is equal parts soft and badass. (We admit that the septum piercing helps with the latter.)
Photo: MediaPunch Inc/REX USA.
Medium Skin With Cool Undertones
“For tan skin, I recommend more vibrant, saturated tones,” says Darling. She suggests jewel tones like ruby, fuchsia, and magenta. That’s because darker skin tends to look washed out paired with pale shades, while saturated hues enhance deeper skin tones. Golden-goddess glow, here you come.
PHOTO: Jason Merritt/Getty Images.
Tyler Ford had the right idea, with pastel-dipped braids.
PHOTO: Venturelli/Getty Images.
And Salma Hayek's light pink looked rosy, not ashy.
Medium Skin With Warm Undertones
Try jewel tones, like blue and emerald green. Consider yourself a bright, bold mermaid with hair as rich and colorful as underwater treasure. Still hankering for a pastel? Try a jewel tone first, and wait for it to fade. It’ll be light, but still flatter your skin tone.
Gigi Hadid recently tried out Millennial pink, streaking her bright blonde, high-pony with bubblegum colored hair chalk.
Solid proof that roots make a rainbow color look that much edgier.
PHOTO: Paul Archuleta /Getty Images.
Chantal Jeffries' slight ombré is perfect for those who are curious about coloring their hair, but afraid to take the full plunge.
PHOTO: Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images/Harper's BAZAAR.
Eva Gutowski played it smart by going muted with her makeup to let her turquoise hair pop.
PHOTO: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic.
Demi Lovato stayed true to her dark roots by blending blue highlights into her black base.
Chanel Iman's Coachella braids could easily translate to creative workplaces — and beyond! Why? It's softer than a full head of color, since her hairstylist blended her natural hair color in with streaks of pastel.
Photo: Karl Walter/Getty Images.
Dark Skin With Cool Undertones
“I love purples for cool-toned African-American skin,” gushes Darling. Indeed, the effect of vivid violets is absolutely stunning — especially with curly textures. Plus, these tend to act like neutrals: Who doesn’t want hair that goes with everything?
PHOTO: LUIS ROBAYO/AFP/Getty Images.
To care for your colored curls and coils, be sure to use a color protecting masque weekly (we love Cantu's).
Don't get it twisted: pastels are still workable, too. In order to avoid looking washed out, try wearing a blend of colors for more dimension.
This pastel blend of colors is a winner.
Photo: Erik Pendzich/REX USA.
Dark Skin With Warm Undertones
Think twice before you cast deeper hues, like plum and ruby, aside, as they're going to be the most flattering. “Everyone wants that pastel look, but that doesn’t necessarily always look the best,” Darling says. Sultry shades bring out the gorgeous, warm undertones in dark skin. Oh, and did we mention these colors are ridiculously trendy? No matter what you wear, you’re bound to look fashion-forward.
Makeup artist Lyric Rochester dyed her TWA pink — and it looks gorgeous.
Karol Conka added some depth to her fuchsia and purple-streaked strands with darker-colored cornrows.
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