Nude Lipstick Shades That Won’t Look Pasty on Darker Skin Tones

Nude lipstick is a beauty essential for everyone, but finding one that suits dark skin can be challenging. To increase your success rate, arm yourself with these easy-to-follow tips and discover how to choose a lipstick colour that brings out the best in your skin tone.

Pop quiz: What makeup goes best with a nude lip colour? The short answer: Anything! From dramatic eye makeup to radiant highlighting to a peachy flush, a nude lip colour is a supportive bestie for any type of beauty look. That’s why it’s a consistent go-to for celebs on red carpets and spotted on high-fashion runways every season. It’s the finishing touch that completes a look without being overwhelming. A nude lip not only looks gorgeous for any occasion but also flatters all skin tones, from the fairest to the deepest. Wherever you are on the melanin spectrum, the best nude lipstick will appear beautifully natural and give lips effortless enhancement. However, if you have darker skin, finding that perfect match can require some work. Landing on one that makes you look vibrantly alive rather than casting a ghostly veil can be an exercise in trial and error. Consider this guide to nude lipstick for dark skin a helpful warm-up session to put you on the path to your winning shade.

  1. It’s all about undertones

Similar to seeking out a perfect foundation match, discovering the undertones in your skin will provide you with a clue to the range of nude lip colours that look best on you. Undertones contribute to skin’s healthy glow, so the goal is to avoid lip shades that will appear pasty and make you look unwell. To figure out your undertones, look at the veins on your wrist. If they appear green or olive, your undertones run warm. Skin with warm undertones tends to look best in lip colours that have a red or an orange hue. A rich nude shade, such as L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Ultra Matte Lipstick in Sienna Supreme, could be ideal. If your veins are blue or purple, your undertones are on the cool side. Skin with cool undertones generally looks best in lip colours that have a blue or purple base. Look for a nude-pink lipstick with a cool tone, like L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Ultra Matte Lipstick in All Out Pout, If your veins have no identifiable colour, your undertones are neutral, which means you can choose shades from both sides of the colour wheel. Find yourself some natural light and swatch lip shades side by side to identify subtle differences.

  1. Contrast counts

Today, the term “nude” is widely interpreted and inclusive—which means we all win! With a palette that ranges from pale pink and taupe to warm caramel and rich brown, both your skin tone and your natural lip colour will help inform a seamless match. If a shade is too light, then it’s bye-bye healthy glow; skin will just look washed out. If the shade is too intense, the nude effect will slip into statement-lip territory. When a nude hue such as L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Ultra Matte Lipstick in Ultra Nude or L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Ultra Matte Lipstick in Utmost Taupe is doing its job, it won’t just merge with your natural lip colour; it will give lips a boost. To get this effect, pick a shade that’s one or two shades darker than your natural lip colour.

  1. A picture-perfect finish

Using a nude lipstick to highlight your best asset requires some attention to detail. This is no time for chapped lips, especially if you’re going for a matte nude lipstick! Since the finish has limited shine, it calls out imperfections, so start by exfoliating your lips. Use a gentle facial scrub or a damp washcloth to buff away unwanted flakes. Next, hydrate your lips with a nourishing balm and allow it to sink in for a minute before applying your lip colour. Clean lines make a nude lip colour pop, regardless of whether your ideal match is a deep-brown nude, such as L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Ultra Matte Lipstick in Cutting Edge Cork, or a cool-tan nude, like L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Ultra Matte Lipstick in Full-Blown Fawn. For increased precision, try tracing a matching tone of lip pencil along your Cupid’s bow, outer corners and lower lip line, or use a tapered lip brush to apply colour.

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