The term “nude lipstick” is one of the vaguest phrases imaginable. Nude lipstick can obviously mean any number of shades, depending on your skintone, and that makes the search for the perfect nude lipstick very challenging. This shade can also referred to as “my lips but better” (MLBB) lipstick, though the phrase nude lipstick usually conveys a paler, slightly more washed out tone. Here are my favorite nude lipsticks in just about every form imaginable – lip pencils, lipsticks, and lip balms.
Because nude lipstick can mean a lot of things, let’s get specific. I would describe myself as having fair, warm-toned skin with peachy yellow undertones and freckles. I have surface redness around my nose, but I don’t have cool-toned skin; it’s much more yellow-toned than pink-toned. I haven’t been shade-tested at MAC before, but I’m about NC10-15. In these pictures I’m wearing Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint in Light, and Glossier Stretch Concealer in Light under my eyes. For reference, here’s a picture of me without any lip product on:
As you can see, I don’t have very pigmented lips. They are naturally a pale, peachy pink shade that can look warm or cool-toned depending on the hour of the day. My favorite nude lipsticks all mimic this peachy shade. Take a look at these shades in action:
This shade is a balm stick, which is a lip balm in pencil form. It’s a very pretty sheer, peachy nude that wears very comfortably and doesn’t require a mirror to apply. However, it doesn’t last very long on my lips, maybe an hour or two at max.
This lipstick is paler, less pink and more peach-toned than the Clinique balm. It has a comfortable, demi-matte finish that wears well for three to four hours.
This lipstick comes in pencil form, so it works as both a lip pencil and lipstick. This is the palest nude shade I own, and it’s the closest to my natural lip color. Because it’s so light, it’s great for balancing out a heavier smokey eye. It lasts for about three hours.
Urban Decay makes my favorite lip liner, a very creamy, long-lasting formula. This shade is very peachy and matte when worn on its own, and as a liner it adds definition and lasting power to the other shades. It lasts about
Until I took these pictures I had no idea how different the lip liner and lipstick shades were. They have the same name, but the lipstick is much pinker-toned than the lip pencil. (Important note: the Revolution formula is now discontinued, but there is a shade with the same name in the new Vice formula). I would describe this shade as a light coral nude in a creamy satin finish. It lasts about two to three hours on my lips.
This lip balm is one of my favorites, with a major caveat – they work best in cold weather. The bullets have metal casings and are prone to melting in the summer heat, or even from being in a pants pocket, so take care. But these are my winter/spring favorites, and I have a set of minis in almost every shade. Honey is the warmest toned shade, a nice sheer nude browny peach.
As you can see, Petal is slightly pinker-toned nude lip balm. Like Honey, this shade has SPF15 and lasts for about two hours.
There you have it! Let me know in the comments: which is your favorite shade?