Color Perception and Jewelry

Why do people wear jewelry? To enhance their appearance, right? A big part of a jeweler’s job is not only making the piece, but also to fit it to the right person. One area in this topic is how to use jewelry to lighten the color perception of brown or black skin, or to darken extremely pale skin.

Stones that would accomplish these two things must be very intense in color, such as Rubies, Coral, Emeralds, or deep blue Sapphires. Why would stones such as these accomplish our purpose? The reason is that when one looks at intense colors for a little while, the eye is overloaded, and it naturally reverses the colors. Try this out for yourself! Stare at the flag below for 15 seconds, then quickly look at a white surface, such as a blank wall. Interesting, huh?
This same thing happens with jewelry. One looks at a bright ruby on a dark-skinned arm, for example, and the eye gets overloaded with color from the Ruby. It reverses color slightly, including all the color around the Ruby. Voila! The skin is enlightened (no pun intended). Same thing with extremely ghostly pale skin. A bright gem, like an Emerald, is placed against it, and the eye reverses the color, and the skin seemingly become much more brown. The change is not suddenly noticable to the eye, and so it seems the natural color of the skin! Essentially, bright gems are makeup without the use of makeup!

American Flag

American Flag (Photo credit: Cristian_RH7)

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