Olive skin

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Two women with olive skin

Olive skin is a human skin color spectrum. It is often associated with pigmentation in the Type IV to Type V range of the Fitzpatrick scale.[1][2] It generally refers to light or moderate brown, brownish, or tannish skin, and it is often described as having yellowish, greenish, or golden undertones.[3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11]

However, lighter olive skin on the lower end of the Type IV coloration range may be less brownish and can in fact become somewhat pale if it receives too little sun exposure. Lighter olive skin nonetheless tans more easily than does fair skin, and generally still retains notable yellow or greenish undertones.[12][13][14]

Geographic distribution

Type IV coloration is frequent among populations from the Mediterranean, as well as parts of Asia and Latin America.[1] It corresponds with moderate brown, typical Mediterranean skin tones.[15] This skin tone rarely burns and tans easily.[16]

Type V coloration is frequent among populations from the Middle East,[15] parts of the Mediterranean,[1] parts of Africa,[17] Latin America,[1] and the Indian subcontinent.[18] It corresponds with darker brown, Middle Eastern skin tones.[15] This skin tone is minimally reactive to ultraviolet radiation, rarely or very rarely burns, and tans quite easily.[16]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d Pfenninger, John L. (2001). Dermatologic and Cosmetic Procedures in Office Practice. Elsevier Health Sciences. 
  2. ^ Mayeaux, E. J. (2015). The Essential Guide to Primary Care Procedures. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 
  3. ^ McCoy, Susan (Sep 1988). "Your True Colors". Ski. 53 (1): 266. Retrieved 28 October 2015. 
  4. ^ Johnson Gross, Kim (1997). Woman's Face: Skin Care and Makeup. Knopf. 
  5. ^ Richmond, JoAnne (Aug 8, 2008). Reinvent Yourself with Color Me Beautiful: Four Seasons of Color, Makeup, and Style. Taylor Trade Publications. p. 160. Retrieved 28 October 2015. 
  6. ^ "Redbook". Redbook Publishing Company. 161: 87. 1983. 
  7. ^ Sesdelli, Maryellen; Fremont, Shelly D. (April 1, 1993). Beauty Basics. Berkley Publishing Group. p. 66. 
  8. ^ Watson, Rosie (2007). Make-Up. New Holland Publishers. p. 62. 
  9. ^ In Style: Getting Gorgeous: The Step-By-Step Guide to Your Best Hair, Makeup and Skin. Time Incorporated. Oct 11, 2005. 
  10. ^ Conway, Paula; Regan, Maureen (2006). The Beauty Buyble: The Best Beauty Products of 2007. Regan Books. 
  11. ^ Burns, Paul Callans; Singer, Joe (1979). The Portrait Painter's Problem Book. Watson-Guptill Publications. 
  12. ^ Mercola, Joseph (2008). Dark Deception: Discover the Truths About the Benefits of Sunlight Exposure. Thomas Nelson Inc. Retrieved 21 November 2015. 
  13. ^ Trew, Sally (2013). Idiot's Guides: Making Natural Beauty Products. Penguin. Retrieved 21 November 2015. 
  14. ^ Kidd, Jemma (2013). Jemma Kidd Make-Up Masterclass. Aurum Press. Retrieved 21 November 2015. 
  15. ^ a b c "The Fitzpatrick Skin Type Classification Scale". Skin Inc. (November 2007). Retrieved 7 January 2014. ; under Tables - Fitzpatrick Skin Type Classification Scale
  16. ^ a b "Fitzpatrick Skin Type" (PDF). Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency. Retrieved 7 January 2014. 
  17. ^ Standard Esthetics: Advanced. Nelson. 2012. ISBN 1285401492. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  18. ^ Robyn Lucas, Tony McMichael, Wayne Smith, Bruce Armstrong, World Health Organization (2006). "Solar Ultraviolet Radiation - Global burden of disease from solar ultraviolet radiation" (PDF). Environmental Burden of Disease Series (13): 13. Retrieved 7 August 2014. 
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