How to Choose the Right Colored Contacts for Your Skin Tone - Updated Jan 2021
Contact lenses are popular for many reasons. People find them more comfortable compared to eyeglasses. They are more fashionable, too. Contact lenses, especially the colored ones, can make you look different. Colored contacts have varying effects on people, and a great deal of this depends on the pattern features - like opacity, tonality, size and presence or black of a limbal ring. Additionally, the wearer's own skin color and hair color can greatly affect how much the contacts stand out (or blend in).
Tips to Follow
COLORED CONTACTS FOR FAIR SKIN
Lucky you! If you have fair skin, chances are that any colored contact lens will look great on you. Colored contacts in shades of blue and gray will look particularly dazzling, giving you a classy look. Fair skin is also a wonderful backdrop for bright eye colors. Ones that shine bright, like turquoise, purple and aqua are especially recommended when you want to stand out from the crowd!
COLORED CONTACTS FOR TANNED/MEDIUM SKIN
If you are brown-skinned or tanned, you need bright colored contact lenses, colors that will make your eyes glowier than your complexion. Tanned people usually choose hazel, green, honey, grey or dark blue (sapphire/navy) contacts. We wouldn't suggest bright blues like turquoise/aqua though, as they usually don't pair well with caramel skin tones. If you opt for neutrals like brown or grey contacts, be sure that they're of a slightly different shade than your eyeshadow to make your irises pop.
FOR DARK SKIN
If you have dusky complexion or dark skin, you can go for a variety of colors, all depending on what kind of effect you want to achieve. Warm colors usually work best. If you want a naturally sexy look, use a warm brown, hazel or 2-tone violet contacts for a bit of edge. Smoky colors, too, are seductive and sexy. If you want an out-of-the-box look guaranteed to turn heads, go for honey or autumn-colored lenses, or even grey lenses. Stay away from loud colors like pink or aqua as they won’t complement your look.
Aside from skintone, also consider your hair color
COLORED CONTACTS FOR MEDIUM BROWN HAIR
Lucky you! There are very few lens colors that medium brown hair won't match with. Almost every color is guaranteed to look realistic
Pictured above: Lilmoon Cream Grege contacts with medium brown hair
COLORED CONTACTS FOR BLONDE & LIGHT HAIR
Blonde and golden-brown hair work well with darker colored contacts, like black, chocolate and deep browns.
Lighter lenses like those that come in shades of grey and beige can work as well, but will give you a distinctly Caucasian (or mixed Eurasian - if you are Asian) look. Make sure your brows are colored the same as your hair to avoid a disjunct look.
Platinum blondes look great with bright blue or emerald as well.
Pictured above: Bright blue contacts with medium brown hair
COLORED CONTACTS FOR BLACK HAIR
Black hair, especially the cool-toned shade like blue-black or salt-and-pepper, provides a beautiful contrast against blue or purple contacts. If you're going for a more natural look, try brown contact lenses.
Pictured above: Large green contacts with medium brown hair
COLORED CONTACTS FOR PINK, PURPLE, BLUE & OTHER BRIGHTLY COLORED HAIR
You might think that such unique hair colors require an equally unique pair of contact lenses, but we'd recommend the contrary. You don't want to have both your eyes and hair competing for attention. It might be too overwhelming to have 2 vividly colored features at once. All you need is a simple pair of one-tone black or brown circle lenses to complete your look.
Pictured above: Natural black circle lenses with medium brown hair
Consider different lighting conditions
Remember that colored contacts will vary in appearance according to lighting, which is something you should consider if you're picking out a pair for a special event. Some tend to "disappear" in dim lighting, which means you'll need to go a shade or two lighter than what you would ideally wear during the day.
Is there a universally flattering lens color?
Yes, there are some enhancement contact lenses - known as circle lenses - that flatter any skin or hair color. These contacts feature a dark brown or black enlargement ring (called a "limbal ring") pattern that outline your iris, thereby making your eyes look bigger, sharper and more awake. They deliver minimal color change, which is why they're enhancement contacts. A good pair of circle lenses is like a little black dress in your makeup drawer - you can dress it up or down and it'll go with practically any accessory! Below are our favorite circle lenses that we recommend based on naturalness and comfort.