The Ultimate Guide to Choosing a NUDE Lipstick for Your Skin Tone and Skin Color

Hello all,

After my comprehensive Red Lipstick Guide, which I am so glad you all loved, I am here today with a Nude Lipstick guide for you all. 

Nude lipstick is a trend now days. 
Whether to complement that gorgeous, glamorous smoky eye or to add a final touch to the no-fussy, no-makeup makeup look; a perfect nude lipstick is all you need. From day to night, from college and office to parties and glam nights, nude lipsticks can rock any look; just it has to be the right shade.  
But finding the perfect nude lipstick is a bit harder; because either we tend to choose a lighter shade, making us look like zombies or a darker one which looks almost a boring, terrible brown on us. But a perfect nude lipstick looks so amazing. It should make you look fresh and youthful, not washed out or like someone from living dead series. Any woman can wear a nude lipstick; you just have to find the shade that flatters your undertone and complexion. So today, I will be guiding you all your way to the perfect nude lips. Time to bid goodbye to all the muddy mess or concealer lips.

Undertones play a major part in choosing the right shade of lipstick for you. The key is to compliment your skin tone. Know which undertone you are and choose accordingly.

Cool Undertone:- If you have a cool pink undertone, then you need a cool pinky nude. They sit together better and looks amazing.

Warm Undertone:- If you have a warm/ yellow based skin tone, then caramel, coral or warm beige toned nudes are for you.

Neutral Undertone:- Lucky you, if you have neutral undertones, you can experiment with any nude lipstick of your choice.

According to COMPLEXION:-
Like your skin tone, your skin color or complexion too plays a major part in choosing the perfect nude lipstick. For example, a nude lipstick which looks like brown on you, can be a perfect shade of nude on someone else. Again, a nude lipstick which looks like concealer on your lips, can be "the Nude Lipstick" for someone else.. So skin color matters too. Lets see how...

Alabaster and Ivory Skin Tone:- Think pink. Red or pink undertones will bring warmth to your face. So go for soft dusty, baby pinky nudes in sheer formula. Avoid flat and completely opaque nudes.

Fair to light Skin Tone:- You can go for a shade darker than your natural lip shade to give more definition or a  light, sheer formula to enhance your natural lips. You can even experiment with glossy formulas. Rosy nudes, beige nudes, you can experiment with both. If you have fair skin, I would suggest you to go for a shade that adds warmth and separation between the lips and the skin.

Medium Skin Tone:- Keeping in mind your undertone, a shade slightly lighter or darker will work best for medium or wheatish skin toned ladies. Check on something peachy for a flattering shade.

Olive Skin Tone:- Choose a shade darker than your skin color, with pink or peachy tones if you have cool undertones and coral or caramel if you have warm undertones. Avoid lighter shades to have the “concealer on your lips” look.

Mocha Skin Tone:- Nudes with a hint of mauve, burgundy or caramel toned nudes look amazing on mocha skin tone. Apply a gloss in latte, gold or mocha to oomph up the look.

Dark to Very Dark Skin Tone:- Coffee, dark milk chocolate or a nude with golden undertones look completely breathtaking on dark skinned beauties. Nudes with tones of papaya or berry also look alluring. I have even seen dark skinned beauties looking absolutely sultry with slightly lighter nude lipstick in a glossy formula.

So keep experimenting to know which one looks best on you.

Things To Do and QUESTIONS To Ask Yourself Before Buying A Nude Lipstick:-
  • Ask yourself what kind of coverage you want; a sheer, light, medium or heavy.
  • Ask yourself what texture and finish you want; a glossy one, a creamy one or a matte one.
  • Your wrist or back of the hand is not the prime spot to check if the lipstick is for you or not. I would have suggested you to apply directly on lips to check, but it is not a very hygienic option. In that case, you can swatch the lipstick on your finger tips and hold the finger over your lips to see if it suits you.
  • Store light changes color, so if you are not 100% sure, you can go out and check under natural sunlight before finalizing the product.
Remember, there are always exceptions and I have seen for some, wearing a shade according to their tone makes the look so jarring. So always test before buying. As I always say, there are no particular rules in makeup artistry that are compulsory for you to abide by. You can mix and match, wear a totally contrasting color and see if you are comfortable with it.  And if you are comfortable, then don’t worry about the ‘rules’. 


  1. I love Nude lipsticks. I really enjoyed reading this fav is 'AMong the fireflies' by mac. I think that is hte best nude shade I have ever come across

  2. Thanks for this article! Not many articles on nude lipsticks include options for darker skin tones. Thanks so much!

  3. Great article, will help us, thanks :-)

  4. Thanks for this article. I'm a beginner in make up so this really helps

  5. Great post and very helpful. Love the detail you provided.

  6. love to way u added various skin-tones with various shades on! Really helped me

    Ankita | | Fashion & Beauty

  7. I'm getting to love makeup more and more! I've never really been a makeup person, but lately seems like I can tell get enough of it


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