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22 May 2023

How to wear summer brights like Holly Willoughby and Kate

22 May 2023

The sunshine has arrived and celebrities are embracing colour with their fashion choices.

The Princess of Wales stepped out in a sunflower yellow LK Bennett blazer during a recent visit to Bath, and two days later was pictured in an emerald green midi dress while on royal duty in London.

TV’s Holly Willoughby has also been loving colour blocking lately.

The presenter, who always shares her outfit pics on Instagram, has chosen a series of bright midi dresses (her signature style) to host This Morning.

Swapping black tights and heels for nude court shoes, the TV style icon is clearly moving away from more wintry ensembles.

Going glam on the red carpet, the 42-year-old chose a lipstick red Roland Mouret dress to attend the Prince’s Trust Awards.

Want to follow in Holly and Kate’s fashionable footsteps with some summery brights – but not sure how to style eye-popping hues, or what shades are best for you?

We asked a colour psychology expert for their advice on wearing brights this summer…

Start with a statement piece

“If you’re nervous about wearing bold colours but you want to bring some into your day to day outfits, I’d recommend starting with a neutral base,” says Tash Bradley, colour psychologist and director of interior design at Lick.

Kate’s sunny yellow jacket teamed with white trousers and top are a perfect example of this: “The bold colours are used to bring in a playfulness and approachability to the outfit. It’s commanding attention but in a joyful way – almost like power dressing, but it’s softer and friendlier,” says Bradley.

Alternatively, add a pop of colour with accessories, she suggests: “That could be with a handbag, lipstick, your nail colour. That way you can see if you love them before committing to an entire outfit.”

Tu at Sainsbury’s Buttercup Yellow Linen-Rich Coord Blazer, £28

Know your undertone

Understanding your skin undertone can help determine the colours that will suit you best.

“If you have cool undertones in your skin, you’ll typically have pink or bluish veins and your skin may have a rosy or pale complexion,” Bradley explains.

“On the other hand, warm undertones are often characterised by greenish veins and a complexion with golden or peachy hues.”

While there are no strict, however, and you should always wear what makes you happy, try wearing shades with a similar undertone, Bradley suggests.

“Bright jewel tones like royal blue, emerald green, and vibrant purples tend to complement cool undertones well,” she says.

“Warm skin tones can be enhanced by bright shades such as coral, orange, and sunny yellow.”

New Look Red Broderie Frill Strappy Midi Dress, £33.99

Complement your hair

Another option is to choose summer brights based on your hair colour.

“Vibrant colours like electric blue, hot pink and sunny yellow can create a striking contrast against blonde hair,” says Bradley – the same goes for grey hair.

“Bold colours such as fuchsia, turquoise, and vibrant reds can pop against darker hair,” Bradley adds.

For redheads, she recommends: “Shades like emerald green, cobalt blue, and deep purples. These colours can provide a beautiful contrast and bring out the warmth in red hair.”

Pair similar shades

Wearing one colour, such as a dress or suit, is the easiest way to create a bright summer outfit. But when it comes to styling separates, try teaming similar shades.

“You can try a tonal colour scheme, taking one colour and going up and down the gradient of that colour – a bright red jacket and pink trousers, for instance,” Bradley says.

“There’s another scheme called analogous, which is created by picking colours that sit next to each other on the colour wheel – orange and pink, for instance, or blue and green.”

Oliver Bonas Linen Pleat Blue Shorts £55; Green Ombre Stripe Batwing Knit Top £55 (available in June)

Contrast colours

If you want to take your brights to the next level, opt for a complementary colour scheme.

“Choose colours that are opposite each other on the colour wheel – green and pink, or blue and orange,” Bradley suggests.

For example, a blazer and trousers, or midi skirt and blouse in combos like this would look great.

“If you want to go super bold, that’s an amazing way of making it work together,” Bradley adds.

Roman Green Cowl Neck Ruched Midi Dress, £45

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