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The best clothing colors for red hair go beyond black

Red hair is such a powerful feature that it can often take on a life of its own, which leaves us with the question: What’s a redhead to wear? Choosing the right clothing colors to enhance — instead of dull — your fiery locks can help you make an even bolder fashion statement.


Red hair green clothes
Image: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images Entertainment

Most shades of green are instantly flattering to the redhead, and mossy and olive greens were made for you. “Green is a great color for those rocking a red mane,” says Kristie Glenn, owner of Blue Labels Boutique Shop. “Kelly green, emerald green, even jade and other heavily saturated shades compliment red hair perfectly. You may want to stay clear of greens that have a yellow undertone because they can make you look washed out. Otherwise… say yes to green!”

A bold bottle green is another perfect choice, and a misty sage green is equally complementary. When choosing any shade of green, go for the purest saturated colors for your best look. Isoke Salaam, a fashion publicist in Washington D.C. who is a big fan of the redhead, suggests, “For a casual look, a green blazer white t-shirt, dark jeans and cool booties work well.”

More: 19 Redhead images to make us all wish we had red hair


Julianne Moore with red hair and navy dress
Image: Gilbert Carrasquillo/Film Magic/Getty Images

Wardrobes require basic building blocks of neutral colors to mix and match; for the red-haired woman, the best of these are black, navy, tan and brown. Black works fabulously for redheads, and a variety of browns are appropriate, too. Look for chocolates, cinnamon browns and rich tans. Navy blue should be in the closet of every red-tressed woman.

Red hair neutrals
Image: Anthony Harvey/Getty Images Entertainment

But is a neutral like white really a good pick for a pale-skinned beauty with red hair? Celebrity stylist and fellow redhead Ali Levine says yes, yes, a thousand times yes. “Yes, you can do it! A redhead can look like a goddess in white!” Levine adds her personal style tip, “If white washes you out, bump up your lips! Bright red lips channel a Marilyn vibe or have some fun with a bright pink lip. Either will pop your skin and hair.”

Glenn says that while women with fiery red hair need to be more cautious in their color choices, ladies with natural red hair have more options and may look best on the neutral color wheel. “I always find that natural redheads look great in shades of cream, ivory, white, pale pink, baby blue and other sorbet colors,” Glenn explains.

Add punch

Emma Stone with red hair blue dress
Image: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images Entertainment

Redheads should avoid most oranges and yellows, and get their color punch from apricot and lavender. Pink can be unexpectedly flattering with red hair; depending on your shade, you can wear tones from the palest blush pink to a bolder pure pink.

Emma Stone with red hair and pink dress
Image: Christopher Polk/Getty Images Entertainment

True purple is a great choice, too. Purples with blue undertones also work well, but red-toned purples won’t be flattering. Of purple, Levine gushes, “Royalty! Need I say more? This will pop your hair to a new level!”

Brighter blues in the turquoise family and deep blueberry colors are other smart choices. Denim blue also enhances the complexion of the true redhead. “A light purple flowy shirt looks amazing with red hair,” says Salaam. “Blues are probably my favorite color for redheads. Light blue to a deep cobalt, a redhead looks great in any blue! I would suggest a fabulous blue winter coat.”

You may have noticed one fabulous color missing from this list — red, a potentially clashing hue that most redheads would never dare to wear. Thankfully, Levine disagrees, “You may hear people say you should never wear red. Actually, its quite the opposite is true, my friend. The key is to find a red tone that works with your skin tone and shade of hair. Look at actress Amy Adams. She’s worn red gowns for high profile events and has received the highest compliments from fashion experts.”

For those fair-skinned Amys and Bella Thorne beautys, Levine encourages you to embrace brilliant red in all its glory. Bright, true reds look incredible with pale skin and red hair, she says. For ladies with brown eyes and darker coloring, darker-toned and even burgundy wine red may be a perfect match. Levine adds, “But no matter what colors you love to wear, having red hair is all about attitude and confidence. I always say confidence is your best accessory!”

More: 9 Things only redheads know about sex

Updated by Bethany Ramos on 1/24/2016

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