In the 1970s, newly availabe higher-quality, affordable color printing made it possible for the first time to print books for the mass market in which skin tones and clothing colors could be fairly accurately reproduced. Several authors grabbed the opportunity to put out information on color analysis systems for discovering "which shades of color in clothes complement your natural coloring to look healthier, sexier and more powerful."
Details of the various systems differed a little, but here is what they all agreed on:
- Most of them divided their color system into four groups of harmonious colors which are said to match with the four seasons of the year. The seasons, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall are little more than arbitrarily named categories. Eventually, it became apparent that a person could easily fall into two of the seasons, not just one. This awareness grew into a twelve-season palette system. Nonetheless, Carole Jackson continued to believe that "with testing, one palette will prove to be better [more harmonious] than the other. A person's color season is simply a determination of their skin tone.
- The consensus was that each person’s basic color category, or season, does not change over a lifetime. Tanning and aging do not change the fact that we keep the same skin color. It simply may become a darker or lighter version of the same color.
- Bernice Kentner warned that skin color, NOT hair or eye color, determines a person's season. She said, "Remember, do not rely on hair coloring to find your Season!" Hair color will naturally change over the years. Also, hair and eye color may be changed artificially with hair dye and colored contact lenses.
- A person's color season has nothing to do with the season of his or her birth or favorite season of the year.