A nude lipstick is like a black pair of boots or a leather jacket, it’s a staple. Whether you’re in a rush and need a quick, effortless option or want a subtle lip to pair with your dark eyes, a nude lippy always saves the day.
So, why don’t we all have one? That’s simply because finding the perfect shade isn’t as easy as it looks. On my own nude lipstick quest (read to the end to find out mine) I realised just how many things there are to think about, if you want to get it really right. So, of course I couldn’t not share! Here are some of the tips and tricks I picked up…
#1 Nude Doesn’t Mean Nude The biggest place people go wrong is taking the term nude too literally. As a general rule of thumb, nude lipstick should be more like your natural lip colour.
#2 Lip Liners Matter If there’s a time to skip lip liner it’s not now, lip liners will stop nude lipsticks looking washed out.
#3 It’s All About The Tone And by tone I mean skin tone of course, as well as complexion. Taking this into account will really make or break your nude lipstick choice. Your complexion is the natural colour of your skin, which is usually categorised into fair, light, medium (including olive skin) and dark. Skin tone is a little more tricky and refers to the undertone of your skin, which is categorised into cool, neutral and warm. Not sure about yours? We’ve got a cheat sheet for that…
Here’s a few cheat ways to find your undertone…
• Check the veins on the underside of your wrist. If they’re blue you’re cool toned, if they’re green you’re warm toned and if you can’t tell whether they’re blue or green then you have a neutral undertone.
• What jewellery do you tend to gravitate towards? Those with cool undertones tend to wear silver, whereas warm toned complexions prefer gold. And neutral undertones can rock both.
• How do you tan? Those with warmer complexions tend to tan quickly without burning, whereas those with cooler undertones will burn more easily in the sun.
The main concern for fair skinned complexions on the hunt for a nude lipstick? Looking like a porcelain doll, so shades that drain the complexion are a big no no. I recommend opting for nude lipsticks with a pink or purple undertone, as they’ll bring warmth to the complexion and enhance the natural lip colour.
Cool: Shiseido Perfect Rouge Lipstick in BE740 Vision – With a purple hue and opaque finish, this nude lipstick will be the perfect statement nude lip for a fair skinned complexion with a cool undertone. This is the shade that Nikki is wearing above.
Neutral: Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Lipstick in 011 Beige Lingerie – Dusty pinks can read as nude on fairer complexions. Whether sheered out or layered up, the warm tone of this lipstick will look great paired with a pop of blush on the cheeks.
Warm: DIOR Addict Lipstick in 535 Tailleur Bar – With golden shimmer running throughout, this brown toned nude will beautifully complement a complexion with warm undertones.
If your skin isn’t very fair you’ll be able to play around a lot more with nudes, meaning you can do pink, beige or brown-toned nude lipsticks. Like fair complexions it’s important to not go too light as this will drain the face of colour, so, my best advice is to go either one shade lighter or darker than the complexion.
Cool: Givenchy Le Rouge in 101 Beige Mousseline – This light beige lipstick will look great on lighter complexions, bringing just the right amount of warmth without looking orange.
Neutral: Givenchy Rouge Interdit Vinyl in 2 Beige Indecent – A little more pink than Beige Mousseline, 03 Beige Indecent has a sheer formula that will make the perfect everyday nude. This is the shade that I’m wearing above.
Warm: Laura Geller Iconic Baked Sculpting in Soho Nude – A bit more of a statement nude, this lippy won’t be for everyone. But if you have a warm undertone, the coral hue of this nude lipstick will look great (the perfect summer lipstick for someone with a light to medium complexion).
Medium complexions are spoilt for choice when it comes to nude lipsticks, meaning they can rock almost anything! For those with cooler undertones I’d recommend a more pink/purple toned nude and a more caramel nude for a warmer complexion, mauve-browns also look incredible on a more tanned complexion.
Cool: Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Lipstick in 013 Leather Blazer – A muted purple-brown, this nude lipstick has white and gold shimmer running throughout, which perfectly compliments a medium complexion.
Neutral: Dior Rouge Dior Couture Colour – Voluptuous Lipstick in 196 Grege – I can’t stop swatching 196 Grege! This peachy nude looks beautiful on almost everyone, it’s a nude I recommend time and time again.
Warm: Elizabeth Arden Beautiful Color Moisturising Lipstick Matte in 43 Nude – This yellow based neutral is made for warm undertones, it adds a modern twist to any look and is a must-have for medium complexions. This is the shade that Rima is wearing above.
My main piece of advice for those with dark skin and looking for a nude lip is to pay close attention to the natural colour of your lips. Avoid pinky beige tones as caramels, browns and mauve shades will be far more up your street!
Cool: Clarins Joli Rouge Lipstick in 06 Fig – This purple toned brown/nude has a sheer finish, which makes it an ideal pick for those looking to even the colour of their lips.
Neutral: DIOR Rouge DIOR Lipstick in 890 Brun Jungle – With a red hue, this brown-toned nude lipstick looks natural and chic on a darker complexion. This is the shade that Favour is wearing above.
Warm: Shiseido Perfect Rouge Lipstick in Black Walnut – Chocolatey tones look beautiful on warmer skin tones, they’re also a great option if you have naturally dark lips.
Over to you!
My perfect nude is Givenchy Rouge Interdit Vinyl in 02 Beige Indecent! Let me know yours below or tweet me @EscentualCeryn.