Complexion

com·plex·ion [complexion complexions] BrE [kəmˈplekʃn]
NAmE [kəmˈplekʃn]
noun
1. the natural colour and condition of the skin on a person's face
a pale/bad complexion
2. usually singular the general character of sth
a move which changed the political complexion of the country
Idiom: put a new complexion on something
Word Origin:
Middle English: via Old French from Latin complexio(n-) ‘combination’ (in late Latin ‘physical constitution’), from complectere ‘embrace, comprise’. The term originally denoted physical constitution or temperament determined by the combination of the four bodily humours; sense 1 (late 16th cent.) being a visible sign of this.
Collocations:
Physical appearance
A person may be described as having:
Eyes
(bright) blue/green/(dark/light) brown/hazel eyes
deep-set/sunken/bulging/protruding eyes
small/beady/sparkling/twinkling/(informal) shifty eyes
piercing/penetrating/steely eyes
bloodshot/watery/puffy eyes
bushy/thick/dark/raised/arched eyebrows
long/dark/thick/curly/false eyelashes/lashes
Face
a flat/bulbous/pointed/sharp/snub nose
a straight/a hooked/a Roman/(formal) an aquiline nose
full/thick/thin/pouty lips
dry/chapped/cracked lips
flushed/rosy/red/ruddy/pale cheeks
soft/chubby/sunken cheeks
white/perfect/crooked/protruding teeth
a large/high/broad/wide/sloping forehead
a strong/weak/pointed/double chin
a long/full/bushy/wispy/goatee beard
a long/thin/bushy/droopy/handlebar/pencil moustache/ (especially US) mustache
Hair and skin
pale/fair/olive/dark/tanned skin
dry/oily/smooth/rough/leathery/wrinkled skin
a dark/pale/light/sallow/ruddy/olive/swarthy/clear complexion
deep/fine/little/facial wrinkles
blonde/blond/fair/(light/dark) brown/(jet-)black/auburn/red/(BrE) ginger/grey hair
straight/curly/wavy/frizzy/spiky hair
thick/thin/fine/bushy/thinning hair
dyed/bleached/soft/silky/dry/greasy/shiny hair
long/short/shoulder-length/cropped hair
a bald/balding/shaved head
a receding hairline
a bald patch/spot
a side/centre/(US) center (BrE) parting/ (NAmE) part
Body
a long/short/thick/slender/(disapproving) scrawny neck
broad/narrow/sloping/rounded/hunched shoulders
a bare/broad/muscular/small/large chest
a flat/swollen/bulging stomach
a small/tiny/narrow/slim/slender/28-inch waist
big/wide/narrow/slim hips
a straight/bent/arched/broad/hairy back
thin/slender/muscular arms
big/large/small/manicured/calloused/gloved hands
long/short/fat/slender/delicate/bony fingers
long/muscular/hairy/shapely/(both informal, often disapproving) skinny/spindly legs
muscular/chubby/(informal, disapproving) flabby thighs
big/little/small/dainty/wide/narrow/bare feet
a good/a slim/a slender/an hourglass figure
be of slim/medium/average/large/athletic/stocky build
Example Bank:
Hughes helped change the complexion of Hollywood.
The joke took on a rather serious complexion when the police became involved.
What you have told us puts a different complexion on the situation.
Years of heavy drinking had given Alison a florid complexion.
a change in the political complexion of the council
a young girl with a rosy complexion
Her auburn hair and blue eyes, together with a fine complexion, made her extremely attractive.
a dark/pale/healthy complexion

Webster's 1913 Dictionary:
n.1.The state of being complex; complexity.
Though the terms of propositions may be complex, yet . . . it is properly called a simple syllogism, since the complexion does not belong to the syllogistic form of it.
2.A combination; a complex.
This paragraph is . . . a complexion of sophisms.
3.The bodily constitution; the temperament; habitude, or natural disposition; character; nature.
If his complexion incline him to melancholy.
It is the complexion of them all to leave the dam.
4.The color or hue of the skin, esp. of the face.
Tall was her stature, her complexion dark.
Between the pale complexion of true love,
And the red glow of scorn and proud disdain.
5.The general appearance or aspect; as, the complexion of the sky; the complexion of the news.

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