What Color Lipstick Should You Wear
In today’s beauty-obsessed world, there are infinite shades of lipsticks on offer. While this means that shoppers have plenty of choices, it can also be overwhelming. With so many to choose from, it can be stressful trying to find the best shade for you. Although it may seem daunting, finding your perfect hue just takes some knowledge about your skin. By choosing the color best suited to your complexion and undertone, you’ll be picking the most flattering shade for you. We’ll show you how to find what color lipstick you should be wearing and those that are the most complementary to your skin. So, whether you’re looking for the ultimate statement shade or a great daily color, we’ll help you find a lipstick that is tailor-made for you.
Identify Your Undertone
When it comes to finding your perfect shade of lipstick, identifying your undertone is essential. Everyone has an undertone, which is yellow and warm, pink and cool or in between and neutral. Knowing which of these categories you fall into will help when you hit the makeup counter. To determine whether your undertone is cool, warm, or neutral, look at the veins on the inside of your wrists. Blue or purple veins indicate that your undertone is cool while green veins belong to warm complexions. If you are unable to decipher whether your veins are blue or green, you possibly have a neutral undertone and can suit both cool and warm colors. Ladies with olive complexions will often have neutral undertones.
You can also identify your undertone by taking note of how your skin burns or tans. Warm skin tones tend to have more melanin and tan easily while those with cool undertones often burn or cannot tan at all. Be aware, though, that the cool category can also include ebony skin tones. If all else fails, you can also see whether your skin looks better with gold or silver jewelry to determine your undertone. If you have a warm complexion, you will look better with gold jewelry, and if you have a cool complexion, silver jewelry will be more flattering. Neutral undertones can wear both and look great.
Know Which Shades Work with Your Undertone
Your undertone will significantly affect which shades of lipstick look best on you. To find a shade that works with your undertone, try focusing on similar hues. In general, ladies with cool undertones will look best with cool shades of lipsticks, such as those with blue or purple tones and classic reds. Ladies with warm undertones, on the other hand, will better suit warm shades, such as peach and orange-toned lipsticks. If your undertone is neutral, such as with an olive complexion, you’ll be lucky enough to look great with both warm and cool colors.
Best Lipstick Color for You
Once you know your undertone, all it takes is a quick look at your skin tone to find your perfect lipstick hue. To determine your skin tone, examine your face in natural lighting with no makeup on. Concentrate on the skin around your jawline to find your tone and decide whether your complexion is fair, light, medium, tan, or dark. Once you know both your undertone and skin tone, avoiding colors that clash with your complexion and finding your most flattering shades will be a cinch. All you need to do is follow the guide below, and you’ll soon know what lipsticks are a must for your makeup bag.
Best Lipstick for Fair Skin
Fair skin is pale and almost translucent at times. If you have this skin tone, you will most likely burn easily and may also have freckles and some redness. For ladies with fair skin, lipsticks in shades of pink, coral, peach, nude, and beige tend to look best. While you can try other hues, you should be careful of lipsticks with too much of a yellow undertone as they can wash you out. If your skin is fair and you also have a cool undertone, shades of mocha, nude, and raspberry will look lovely on you. Ladies with fair and warm skin, on the other hand, will look beautiful with pale pinks and peachy nudes. As for evening looks, fair ladies can try a Fuschia lip or a blue-based red for cool complexions and an orange for warm undertones.
Best Lipstick for Light Skin
Women with light skin will find that they appear somewhat pale. When in the sun they will also burn, but it may turn into a tan afterward. If you have this skin tone, colors such as pink, pinkish beige, coral, and peach will make flattering choices. Like fair skin tones, ladies with light skin should also avoid colors with yellow and gold tones. Instead, seek out rosy hues and toffee nudes. If you prefer something more pigmented, try a pink-red or red-based coral. Raspberry can also work well for cool complexions, as does mocha. If you have warm undertones try pale pinks and peaches as well as orange-based corals and camel-beige colors.
Best Lipstick for Medium Skin
Medium skin tones tend to tan easily and generally do not burn. They also aren’t usually sensitive. If this sounds like your skin, consider trying rose, mauve, and berry shades. In particular, brown-mauve makes a lovely choice, and beige with soft pink is an excellent nude shade for this skin tone. For those with medium skin and a cool undertone, pinks and cranberry shades can make a complementary choice. For an evening look, you can also try wine colored lipsticks. If your undertone is warm, on the other hand, give orange-based reds, tangerines, and even copper and bronze shades a try. You may be surprised by just how lovely one of these shades looks on you.
Best Lipstick for Tan Skin
This skin tone group encompasses both tan complexions and olive tones. If you fall into this category chances are that you rarely burn and maintain a tanned appearance all year round. For ladies with tan skin, avoiding brown and overly purple lipsticks is a good idea as the colors may clash with this complexion. If you have tan skin, you should try other colors, such as coral, deep pink hues, and orange-based shades, instead. In particular, shades like orange-based reds and tangerines look great on warm complexions while cool undertones better suit cherry red and shades of wine. As for ladies with olive skin, who tend to have neutral undertones, nearly any shade of nude, red, orange, and pink will look good.
Best Lipstick for Dark Skin
Those with dark skin tones have a deep complexion and never get a sunburn. They also tend to have black or dark brown hair. If you fit into this category, consider brown and purple shades like walnut, caramel, and wine as your go-to hues. Deep plum, berry, dark purple, and reds also tend to look striking on ladies with dark skin while pale lipsticks should be avoided. Don’t think that this means you have to miss out on nude lipstick, however. Just choose a warm nude tone, such as metallic brown, warm caramel, rose gold, or rich berry for a flattering look. If you also have a cool undertone, consider colors like ruby and metallic reds as well as deep wine hues like merlot. Those with warm undertones can try copper and bronze colors as well as cherry reds.
Trial & Error
Finding the right lipstick shade can take a lot of trial and error. One easy method is to use a tester (using a cotton swab) and swipe the color onto the tips of your fingers. The pads of your fingers will be closer to the lip shade than your hand and will give you a better idea of how the color will look.
The best way is to test the color on your actual lips. Some companies might actually have mini lipsticks for testing or you can purchase cheap drugstore brands to experiment with colors before purchasing a more expensive and/or better-formulated lip product. Also, remember that price doesn’t necessarily mean a particular lipstick will look great on you or that it is any better than an inexpensive brand.
Look at Your Natural Lip Color
For nude lipsticks or more natural shades, look at your natural lip color, and choose a color close to the lip color, or a couple of shades deeper or brighter.
If a lipstick color doesn’t look good on you, you can always mix it with another lip color. Some of the best-looking lip shades are custom-made by blending two to three different shades.
For simple custom-blending of lip color! makeup artist Mally Roncal has created the Mally Pro-Tricks Lip Palette which contains nine lipstick shades; plus three “adjusters,” which is what Roncal calls the three additional colors; that are used to deepen, lighten or add pearlescent shimmer to customized shades. The Mally Pro-Tricks Lip Palette is $40.
How to Choose Lipstick
- Determine whether your undertone is warm, cool, or neutral.
- If you have a warm undertone stick to warm lipsticks and if you have a cool undertone choose cool lipsticks.
- Identify whether your skin tone is fair, light, medium, tan, or dark.
- In general, lighter skin tones will suit softer and cooler colors while darker skin tones suit richer, warmer hues.
- Neutral complexions, such as olive skin tones, will look great with any color.
- Remember that rules are meant to be broken, so if you want to try a different color go for it.