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Nude lipstick is one of the most versatile lip colors in the world. In fact, this beauty staple has made its mark and has rightfully secured its place in just about every girl’s makeup bag. The only problem: Sometimes, it can be confusing when it comes to determining which nude lipstick shade is the perfect match for your skin tone. Choosing the wrong shade of nude lipstick can make you look like you’ve been transported from the ‘90s (and we’re not talking about the good beauty trends from that decade!). We know how frustrating this whole process can be, which is why we’re breaking down how to find the best nude lipstick for every skin tone as well as how to apply it with lip liner.
Those of you with fair skin tones should pay close attention when choosing a nude lipstick because you run the risk of looking pale (like, vampire pale) when wearing one. Reach for a shiny shade that has light pink undertones, like the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Shine Lipstick in Glossy Fawn. Going for a touch of color can help liven up your complexion without taking you into doll territory. Stick to pale, rosy nudes that have a nice sheen to them. There are a couple of lip colors you should steer clear of if you have fair skin. You should definitely stay away from nude lipsticks that have yellow undertones. These can wash you out and make your skin look lackluster and dull. You should also avoid nude lipstick shades that have an orange tinge because they can make pale complexions look sallow.
When choosing a nude lipstick for medium skin tones, look for a shade that has peach or pink undertones to it, like the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Matte Lipstick in Matte-Sterpiece. Make sure whatever nude lipstick shade you choose is slightly lighter or darker than your natural complexion to hit that sweet spot. Do not, we repeat: do not, choose a nude lipstick color that’s too similar to your skin tone, as this can end up blending in too much with your skin.
Carmel or taupe shades are the best options for those with olive skin tones. You can also opt for a light golden beige shade of nude lipstick to help enhance your olive complexion instead of masking it. Peachy nude lipsticks, like the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Paints/Lips Matte in Skinny Dip, can help balance the green undertones in your skin and add warmth to your skin. However, don’t choose nude lipsticks that are lighter than your complexion. Doing so can make you look like you're wearing concealer on your lips instead of an actual lipstick hue.
When shopping for a nude lipstick for dark skin tones, the best option is chocolate nudes. If you want to add dimension to your lips without making them look flat, try a nude lipstick that has a shimmery finish. If you have darker skin with red or blue undertones, go for a darker nude lipstick, like the L’Oréal Paris Infallible Pro-Matte Liquid lipstick in Milk and Cookies. Just avoid wearing a nude lipstick with gray tones and you’ll be in the clear.
Once you’ve chosen the best nude lipstick for your skin tone, it’s time to apply! Start by lining your lips with a darker color, blending in the edges. Leave the middle section of your lips bare, then apply your nude lipstick. You can also color in your lips completely with a lip liner before applying nude lipstick. This can help create a nice base for your nude lipstick and it can also help your nude lipstick to go on easier.
Want to add a pop of color to your lips? Head over to our article, Our Best Red Lipstick for Every Skin Tone, next.