The Indispensable Nude Lip
This is the time of year that one reaches for a deep, dark red lip color, but this season the nude lip still reigns supreme. In fact, for the first time in three years, nude lip shades are outselling red hues. While I’ll always love the unbeatable chic of the classic red lip, I do find myself gravitating towards the lighter hues these days — probably because I like the ease applying a swipe of color without needing a mirror.
Finding the right nude can be tricky, but nowadays there are plenty of gorgeous nudes that suit every complexion. It’s similar to finding a foundation — consider your skin color (and undertones), hair color and eye color. Generally speaking, opt for pinkish hues if you’re pale, browner tones if you have a golden undertone and darker beige colors suit olive and dark complexions.
If you have an alabaster complexion with pink undertones, beige-toned nudes will be too yellow and wash you out. Avoid extremely matte, opaque textures, which can look chalky and deaden porcelain skin. Try a translucent pink-nude that allows your natural lip color to peek through, like Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte in Nude Beige, or Tom Ford Lip Color in Blush Nude.
Fair-skinned ladies with a golden undertone will find a warmer nude, such as Red Apple Lipstick New York to be most flattering. I also love a good lip balm, such as Fresh Sugar Honey Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15. A peachy nude, such as Nars Satin Lipstick in Honolulu Honey, also looks lovely on pale skin with yellow undertones.
L’Oreal’s recent Color Riche Collection Exclusive takes the guess work out of finding the perfect nude for wide a range of complexions. If you have light olive skin, try Jennifer’s Nude, and Freida’s Nude enhances deep, golden-toned skin. Liya’s Nude suits darker skin tones beautifully. I am, however, rather disappointed that the colors that best suit me from this collection (Gong Li’s Nude and Fan Bingbing’s Nude) are not available in the United States. I plan on stocking up on my next trip to Asia.
If you have a very dark complexion with red undertones and have been seeking a perfect nude lip shade; look no further than Lancôme Rouge in Love Lipstick in Cocoa Couture. This intense, saturated color is the perfect complement to richly pigment skin.