Easy answer: Kodak Portra 160 printed by a master printer and scanned well.
Expanded answer: The problem, in my brain, with digital imaging is that a b&w brightness value is evaluated by an Adobe (or Phase One, if yer posh) software engineer and the color filters over a sensor pixel. They respond in a linear manner, whereas film responds in various curves. Skin tones are the most problematic and, though my method isn’t easy or perfect, I use a combination of split toning, custom color profiles and HSL adjustments in Lightroom, plus selective color adjustments in Photoshop to make the highlights balanced, the dark tones rich and, most importantly avoid any orange cast to the skin (unless it’s a Scandinavian girl who loves fake tanning … well actually I still fix that orange skin thing for them, but it take longer.)
Based on a random photo I have open, HSL hue adjustments are: +5 red channel, -5 orange and yellow channels, -5 blue channel, +35 magenta channel (just gotta watch that aggressively shifting one channel does not create banding). Saturation: plus red, minus orange, plus yellow, strong minus green and magenta. Messing with luminance seems problematic to me. Split toning should be mellow but if I want the scene to be warm, I counteract with a gentle cool (210 or 215) tone for highlights.
My methods change every time I fix something and have, hopefully, mellowed over the years into a natural look. I use Photokit sharpening because it looks more like grain than excessive, hard edge contrast when printed in a magazine.
Whatever, though, my shit is whack. I’m just making lemonade out of rotten, poorly exposed lemons.