What is Ivory Skin Tone? (Skin Care & Makeup Tips)

Just like your skin type, your skin tone is just as important when it comes to skincare as well as makeup. One of the most common yet not fully understood is ivory skin tone. This is one of those skin tones that require diligence because it can easily go from bright and smooth to dull and dry. 

Understanding your skin tone is part of the equation of a successful skincare regime and makeup that enhances your look. So in this article, I will tell you what exactly is ivory skin tone, how you can find out if you have it, and answer the million-dollar question “how to take care of ivory skin tone.”

Key Takeaways

  • Ivory skin tone is creamy white skin tone, one of the three light and fair skin tones, falling in Type 1 on the pigmentary phototype scale. 
  • This skin tone may have cool or warm undertones, including pink, peach, yellow, blue, and gold. 
  • Ivory skin is susceptible to sunburn and photodamage, which is why SPF is essential. 
  • Light foundation and blush, paired with bright lipstick, work great for both cool and warm ivory skin tones. 

What is Ivory Skin Tone?

Ivory skin tone gets its name from the ivory tusks of elephants. It describes pale skin with a blue undertone. It’s one of the three white skin tones, the other two being porcelain skin tone and alabaster skin tone

Of the three white or lighter skin tones, the ivory skin tone is the darkest. However, as compared with other darker skin tones like olive skin, it’s still pretty fair. The skin undertone can vary between yellow, pink, peach, or gold. 

In terms of the famous Fitzpatrick Pigmentary Phototype Scale, ivory skin tone falls in Type I. What this means is that it’s one of the fairest skin tones with the least amount of melanin occurring naturally. Consequently, it’s more sensitive to UV rays. 

In terms of ethnicities, ivory skin tone is found in Caucasians and Asians mostly. 

There are also subcategories of ivory skin: warm ivory and pale ivory. That essentially depends on whether you have cool or warm undertones

How to Find Out If You Have Ivory Skin Tone? 

There are several ways to determine if you have an ivory skin tone. The easiest way is to use the Fitzpatrick scale, where Type 1 indicates creamy, fair complexions, including ivory. However, it’s not the most accurate solution. 

Source: pexels.com

You can also look for common signs such as:

  • Pale skin
  • Yellow, pink, blue, or gold undertone
  • Colored eyes
  • Beige, blonde, or red hair
  • Sensitive to the sun (gets sunburn easily)

Although you may not have all of the signs above, if you have at least three, you have ivory skin. 

Aside from determining whether you have ivory skin, you should also find out what kind of undertone you have. For this, the vein test might help. Look at the veins on your wrist. If the veins look bluish, purple, or pink, you have cool undertones. If they appear greenish, you have a warm undertone, and if they appear bluish-green, you have a neutral undertone. 

If you’re still confused, I’d recommend speaking to a dermatologist who can help identify your exact skin type and tone. But an even more fun way would be to compare your skin tone with celebrities known for their flawless ivory skin. 

Celebrities with Ivory Skin Tone 

I think knowing which celebrities share the same skin tone as yours can be a great thing. We follow celebrities so much for fashion, skincare, and makeup trends. So you might as well do it with a celebrity that actually has the same skin tone as yours. 

Here’s the kicker, though. Ivory skin tone isn’t as common as you’d think. However, there are a bunch of celebrities with this beautiful yet demanding skin color. Here are some of them:

  • Emma Stone
  • Nicole Kidman
  • Amanda Seyfried
  • Christina Hendricks
  • Elle Fanning

Yes, these all pretty, award-winning actresses have an ivory skin tone with mostly cool undertones like peach or pink. 

Source: pexels.com

If you’re a fan of any of these celebrities, you can follow their skincare routines or makeup looks worry-free as those are likely to work on your skin as well. 

Benefits of Ivory Skin 

Light skin tones like porcelain and ivory have long been regarded as a beauty standard, but keeping the social and political discussion aside, such a skin tone is not without benefits. As a slightly darker cream skin tone, it offers more versatility in terms of color and makeup compatibility. 

Ivory skin, like most light skin tones, can readily absorb UV rays, which results in better absorption of vitamin D. However, that’s a double-edged sword because too much sun for light skin is also bad as the skin is susceptible to burns as well as cancer. 

One great advantage of ivory skin tone is that you can wear a lot of bright and dark colors that create a sharp contrast with light skin. At the same time, you can also enjoy wearing lighter shades of bright colors like red or orange. 

Darker colors like navy, gray, burgundy, and green work great with this skin tone. In terms of jewelry, both gold and silver jewelry looks good on ivory skin tone, especially one with a cool undertone. 

Challenges of Ivory Skin

Of course, ivory skin is not without its challenges, with the main one being sensitivity to UV rays. As much as you might crave sunbathing on the beach or getting that tan, you have to be very careful about sun exposure. 

Since lighter skin tones are more susceptible to UV rays, there are more vulnerable to sunburns and photodamage. Photodamage can lead to early aging signs like wrinkles or hyperpigmentation. 

Also, unlike dark skin, ivory skin stone has a higher risk of skin cancer. However, there are a number of other factors involved as well. 

Ivory Skin Tone: Best Skincare and Makeup Practices

When it comes to skincare, your skin type will mostly determine your needs and the kind of products you can benefit from. However, skin tone is intrinsically connected with skin type, so your ivory skin tone also has some say in what you should apply to your skin. 

More importantly, skin tone is a determining factor in your choice of makeup. With fundamental things like foundation, blush, and lipstick, you have to take into account your skin tone. 

So here I’ve compiled some helpful tips to take care of your ivory skin, as well as listed the right makeup shades and colors. 

Always Use Broad-Spectrum Sunscreen

First thing’s first, I cannot stress enough the importance of sunscreen for people with ivory skin. As this skin tone is highly vulnerable to damage from the sun, it’s imperative to wear SPF over skincare products and makeup to protect the skin. 

Source: pexels.com

Even if it’s not very sunny outside, it’s best to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen when going out. 

Choose the sunscreen that is rated SPF 30 or more, but ideally, you should go for SPF 50

Use Potent Actives with Caution

Lighter skin tones, in general, are vulnerable to redness from irritants in skincare. If you have an ivory skin tone, you may be more sensitive to certain ingredients, even if you don’t necessarily have sensitive skin. 

So it’s best to tread with caution and patch test any potent ingredients like vitamin C or retinol. Furthermore, I would highly recommend using a calming and soothing cream in your AM or PM routine to control any redness from actives in skincare. 

Don’t Forget Cleaning and Hydration

Cleansing is an absolute must for everyone regardless of skin type or tone. However, your ivory skin may turn dull quickly if you let pollutants and oil on your skin for too long. It can also lead to a host of skin issues like acne

Therefore, it goes without saying that cleansing at least twice a day is essential. Moreover, focus on hydrating ingredients because you want to keep the skin well-hydrated and moisturized. Avoid harsh chemicals found in certain cleansers and face washes. 

Use Self-Tanning Lotions Instead of Sunbathing

While it’s not hazardous to sunbathe if you apply sunscreen, I would recommend using self-tanning lotions instead. This is all the more relevant for those in their late twenties and thirties, as their skin is more prone to damage from the sun. 

You can get the right amount of tanning using a quality tanning lotion

More importantly, avoid indoor UV tanning like a tanning bed, as research shows that it increases the risk of melanoma. 

Choosing the Right Makeup for Ivory Skin Tone

Here’s what I found works best for ivory skin when it comes to makeup:

Foundations & Concealers

Luckily enough for those with ivory skin, it’s relatively easier to find the correct foundation. Nevertheless, you should focus on the undertones of your skin, whether they are cool or warm. 

Generally, it’s best to go with a foundation one shade lighter than your ivory skin tone. To find the perfect match, go with a shade that matches the tone of your lower face or jawline

On the other hand, if you want a more tanned look or you have been tanning lately, you can go with a foundation one shade darker. You can also mix the two foundations together to get something that resembles your skin tone closely. 

As for the undertones, for cooler undertones like pink or blue, go for a foundation with pink undertones. Conversely, with warmer undertones, go with golden or peach undertones in the foundation. 

Ivory skin tone can easily develop blemishes, for which you can use concealers matching the skin tone. In fact, concealers can also help reduce the appearance of redness on the face. 


With the pinkish and peachy undertones of ivory skin, there’s not much need for blush. However, some light blush never hurt anyone!

Use the blush to emphasize cheekbones but don’t go overboard with it. Let the undertones of your skin do all the talking. For the evening, you can also go for some shimmery blush. 


For lipstick, both light and dark shades can work with ivory skin tone. However, muted tones, especially nude lipsticks are a no-go.

Brighter tones will pop more on this skin tone and are highly recommended even for light day makeup. Different shades of pink and red will work perfectly for day and evening makeup. 

Best Products for Ivory Skin Tones

Best Foundation – No products found.

The Neutrogena Healthy Skin Liquid Foundation in a variety of shades for pale skin, including ivory skin. More importantly, it contains titanium oxide sunscreen (SPF 20), which is an additional benefit for lighter skin tones like ivory. 

You can choose from Classic Ivory or Natural Ivory shades. This can be mixed with another foundation to get the exact shade you want. 

No products found.

Best Sunscreen – No products found.

The Colorescience Total Protection Face Shield SPF 50 is a great option for ivory skin tones, as this sunscreen is designed keeping in mind pale and dark skin tones. Of the three shades, the ‘Glow’ option is best for ivory skin. However, you can also go for ‘Bronze’ if you want a tinted look. It’s a mineral sunscreen with safe ingredients and SPF 50, which provides reliable UV protection. 

No products found.

Best Cleanser – No products found.

The TruSkin Vitamin C Facial Cleanser packs in those benefits that specifically cater to pale skin tones. Vitamin C helps the skin attain its natural brightness. Plus, this face cleanser also claims to fight UV damage. 

Other powerful ingredients in this cleanser are tea tree oil and aloe vera, both of which have soothing properties your skin will appreciate. 

No products found.

Best Tinted Moisturizer – No products found.

Rather than burning in the sun to tan your ivory tone, go with this Wet n Wild Tinted Hydrator with hyaluronic acid. It comes in different shades, including light ones, so you can choose one shade darker than your skin tone. It has a non-greasy finish, which means even those with oily skin can use it. 

No products found.


People with ivory skin tones should have a skincare routine filled with products with SPF because they are prone to sun damage. You may also want to start early on anti-aging products if you have signs of photodamage. Like any other skin tone, hydration and moisturization are key!

Lastly, go with natural ingredients and avoid harsh chemicals as they can make the skin appear red and irritated.

Was this story helpful? Why not share?