Nude Lipsticks That Won’t Wash You Out
Nude lipsticks are an intimidating beauty feat. Pick a color that’s too light, and you’ll appear to have smeared your lips with concealer. Pick a color that matches your skin exactly and you’ll be confused with the walking dead. Pick a color that’s too dark and you may channel the ’90s (PSA: Not a good thing). Despite the gamble they require, nude lips are more popular than ever since the “no-makeup” makeup look is in. “Nude” is a word that needs some explaining, though. Since every skin color isn’t the same, there are countless shades of nude. We’re here to help you navigate the pink-hued, peachy-toned, cool-based, warm-leaning, plum-tinted, beige, brown, taupe, and everything in between of nude lipsticks. There are a few essential tips to remember when shopping for nude lipstick.
The color of your skin plays a role in the process, but you should pay more attention to the undertones of your skin and the color of your lips. When searching for a nude lipstick, the aim is not to match the color of your cheeks as you would a foundation. You first need to understand what undertones your skin carries. Whether you’re fair, medium, tan, dark, or deep, your skin has cool, neutral, or warm undertones. Inspect your bare face in the mirror or visit your favorite makeup counter to seek help determining your undertones. If you’ve dipped into the art of color correcting, you’re well versed in cancelling out red splotches with green and minimizing blue and purple under-eyes with yellow, peach, or orange-based makeup. This will help you pick out a nude lipstick that carries the same undertones as your skin.
Even more important than the undertones, though, is the actual color of your lips. Just as all makeup should, nude lipsticks are there to enhance your natural beauty. You should choose a shade that complements the color of your lips, rather than covering it up. If your lips have a natural pink tint, go with a nude lipstick that will bring the pink to the forefront. If your lips have deep plum undertones, you have no excuse not to rock a gorgeous nude that shows them off. When in doubt, though, go a shade darker than your natural lip color. A shade lighter will wash you out, and even though a shade darker might appear more-than-nude, it will still complement your coloring.
Although matte lipsticks are the most popular on the market, be careful with matte nudes. A matte nude lip gives you a lot better chance of looking chalky or ghostly. Before applying your nude lipstick, it’s a great idea to apply a sugar scrub or lip exfoliator for seamless application and a balm for moisture. If your lipstick has a creamy, satin, or shiny finish, you probably won’t need a gloss. But a word to the wise: If you choose a matte nude lipstick, please top it off with a little gloss to add some definition and shine. We don’t want your lips to fade away! On that note, be sure to dust some bronzer on the tops of your cheekbones and forehead, and don’t forget a swirl of blush (Mama would never let you anyway). Nude lipsticks don’t go well with a completely bare face, so offset them with a little flush and bold brows or an extra helping of mascara.
If you’re afraid to try nude lipstick, don’t be! Once you find the perfect shade, you’ll want to buy a lifetime supply of it. Nude lipstick makes a noticeable difference but isn’t too crazy for everyday wear, and it can look sultry with a smoky eye at nighttime. If you’re all set with our tips, here are some of our favorite nude lipsticks. Mama always approves of adding “a little color” to your makeup routine, but she might come around when she sees these gorgeous nude lipsticks.
Maybelline Color Sensational The Buffs Lip Color in Blushing Beige
This entire line of nudes is full of budget-friendly options. This light, warm nude is ideal for fair to medium skin tones.
Buy It: $5.49; target.com
Bobbi Brown Lip Color in Tulle
This pinkish nude is great for fair skin with pink undertones. It might look too bright in the tube, but it blends with your natural lip color for the ultimate wearable pink.
Buy It: $29; macys.com
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Champagne on Ice
This true nude has a hint of shimmer built in so your lips won’t fall flat against your skin, and it’s hard to beat that price tag.
Buy It: $8.29; walgreens.com
NYX Butter Lipstick in Root Beer Float
This lipstick has strong pigmentation but feels lightweight on your lips. This brown-ish peach is great for medium to dark skin tones.
Buy It: $6.50; macys.com
Dior Addict Lipstick in Urban
A sheer, cool-toned, sparkly pink that’s good for very fair complexions. Yes, it’s a splurge, but you’ll be obsessed with this creamy formula—it’s called addict for a reason.
Buy It: $37; saksfifthavenue.com
Make Up Forever Artist Rouge Lipstick in Hazel Beige
Great for dark or deep skin with warm undertones, this creamy formula is a rosy brown that will enhance your natural color.
Buy It: $22; sephora.com
e.l.f. Cosmetics Beautifully Bare Satin Lipstick in Touch of Nude
Vitamin E and Shea butter ensure your lips stay hydrated and nourished, and this sheer nude will flatter any lip color.
Buy It: $5; elfcosmetics.com
MAC Lipstick in Derrière
Nicki Minaj’s nude line with MAC has plenty of nude options for every skin tone, but this brown is ideal for naturally dark lips. Thanks Nicki!
Buy It: $17.50; bloomingdales.com
Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey
This legendary Clinique shade has reached cult-classic status. The shade appears to be a deep berry but transforms into a shade that works with the natural color of your lips. It’s sheer and perfect for everyday and any skin tone.
Buy It: $17.50; sephora.com
Charlotte Tilbury K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipstick in Penelope Pink
Charlotte Tilbury’s K.I.S.S.I.N.G line is known for its beautiful nudes. Nude Kate, a beige nude, might be more popular, but Penelope Pink is our favorite for a hint more of color that’s flattering on any skin tone. It’s a major splurge with major benefits.
Buy It: $34; nordstrom.com
Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupté Shine Oil-In-Stick Lipstick in Nude Lavalliere
YSL’s lipsticks are always top-rated, and this pinkish brown will look beautiful on medium to tan skin tones. The oil-infused formula is deeply hydrating for dry lips.
Buy It: $37; sephora.com
Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment Sunscreen in Honey
This nourishing treatment is a barely there option for everyday that won’t dry you out. This is a warm nude that will work on tan to dark skin tones.
Buy It: $24; sephora.com
Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in Fuel
This nude is very peachy, which will work well for girls that have warm undertones. The Vice line has tons of metallic, satin, and matte colors to choose from for any skin tone, though.
Buy It: $17; sephora.com
Bobbi Brown Lip Color in Sandwash Pink
This creamy shade is a beige pink that would work on most skintones.
Buy It: $29; nordstrom.com
Tom Ford Lip Color in Sable Smoke
This shade is one that has saved its seat on “best nude lipstick” lineups. It’s a huge chunk of change to hand over for lipstick, we know, but you will not regret it.
Buy It: $54; bloomingdales.com
Benefit They’re Real! Double The Lip in Nude Scandal
Benefit’s Double The Lip combines a lipstick and liner in one package for full definition without extra effort or time. The pinky nude of nude scandal flatters every skin tone.
Buy It: $20; sephora.com
Kat Von D Studded Kiss Crème Lipstick in Sanctuary
This lip color is a sanctuary for coffee-toned lips, and it’s from the brand’s newest line of lipstick, which includes multiple nude options for every lip color out there.
Buy It: $19; sephora.com
Dior Rouge Dior Lip Color in Grège
This popular shade is a universal nude that you’ll fall in love with, which is definitely worth the cash.
Buy It: $37; saksfifthavenue.com
MAC Lipstick in Velvet Teddy
Perhaps MAC’s most famous nude, Velvet Teddy is a deep-tone beige that complements every lip’s natural shade. Seriously, you’ll love it.
Buy It: $17.50; nordstrom.com
Bite Beauty Multistick in Almond
This rich mahogany is ideal for deep skin tones, but Bite’s line of multisticks has nudes for every skin tone and undertone. And, as the name implies, you can use this tube on lips, eyes, or cheeks or a natural flush.
Buy It: $24; sephora.com