What are the things you keep in mind when choosing a lipstick shade? Unlike other makeup products like foundations and concealers you carefully pick out the right shade for your skin tone, the choice of lipsticks is more whimsical. You like a colour, you buy it. In the process, unwittingly, end up collecting dozens of lipsticks, a majority of which just keep sitting in your vanity box well beyond its use-by date.
While a range of shades can look good enough on your face, your skin tone and undertone play a huge role in determining which ones truly accentuate your appearance. Skin tone and undertone for choosing a lipstick, say what? Yes, you read that right. Just like your foundation, concealer, blush or bronzer, the choice of the right lipstick shade also rides not just on your skin tone that is classified as light, medium, dark and so on, but also the undertone – warm, cool or neutral.
Let’s begin to decode how to identify different skin undertones and which lipstick shades compliment them the best to help narrow the field and help you select the right colours from hundreds of different options out there.
How to Identify Your Skin Undertone?
Skin tone and undertones are two different ball games altogether. Irrespective of the colour of your skin, you could have any one of these three basic undertones – warm, cool or neutral. Each of these further has different tones within.
Sounds complex? This lowdown will simplify identifying your skin undertone (the key lies in the way you tan):
A warm skin undertone is golden, peachy, or yellow. When tanned, light skin with a warm undertone tends to appear more peach, light to medium skin tone has a more golden tan and deep or dark skin tone a caramel tan.
A cool skin undertone is bluish, red, or pink. With this undertone, light skin gets a rosy tan, light-medium has a tan resembling a deep cinnamon hue, and dark skin reflects a reddish tan.
A neutral skin undertone has a mixture of both warm and cool hues. People with this undertone do not have a predominant tan shade.
Choosing the Right Lipstick Shade Based on Your Undertone
Now that you have some clarity on what your skin undertone may be, let’s look at which would be the right lipstick shades for you. Sadly, it’s hard to pinpoint a specific shade that will look the best on your skin. However, we can offer you colour spectrums to experiment with. Using these as a framework, you can try different shades to find the ones that work best:
For Warm Undertones
Given its amber-like hues, shades of red work best to enhance this skin type. You can experiment with deep red like L’Oreal Paris Color Riche Matte Pure Rouge, brick red like Colorbar USA Velvet Matte Lipstick Bare or a bright orange like Lakme Absolute Matte Revolution Lip Color Obsessive Orange.
For Cool Undertones
Lipstick shades with cool undertones best complement this skin composition. Pinks, berries, blue-ish hues are some colour spectrums to explore if you have cool undertones. For cool undertones, you can experiment with lipstick like SUGAR Nothing Else Matter Longwear Lipstick Berry Picking, Lakme Forever Matte Liquid Lip Colour Fuchsia Chic, L.A Colors Moisture Cream Lipstick Cherished, and Lakme Cushion Matte Lipstick Pink Prom
For Neutral Undertones
With neutral undertones, there is a lot of room to play around with when it comes to choosing lipstick shades. Light pinks like MyGlamm Pose Hd Lipstick Soft Pink work best for fair skin with neutral undertones, mauves like Lakme Cushion Matte Lipstick Mauve Secret, and deep browns or berry shades like Avon True Color Lipstick Brown Suede or Wet N Wild Megalast Catsuit Liquid Lipstick Berry for dark tone-neutral undertone combination.
Making Conflicting Shades Work for Different Undertones
What if you have a cool undertone that shines through with soft lipstick shades and a deep love for bold colours like red? Or what if you like nude lipsticks which don’t necessarily gel well with your skin tone and undertone? Here are a few hacks to make the colours closest to your heart sit well on your skin:
- If you like deep, dark shades, you can make them work no matter your skin tone or undertone by simply pairing them up with lip gloss. The shimmer from the gloss works well to subdue the intensity of deep colours, making them more suitably wearable.
- To choose an ideal nude lip colour, pick one that’s a shade darker than the colour of your inner lip.
- When choosing brighter lip colours that may be in contrast to your skin tone and undertone, remember sheerer compositions are more forgiving than their dense counterparts. So, picking a satiny, liquid lip colour over a matte lipstick can work like a charm!
Finding that perfect lip colour that can become your go-to choice just became so much easier, innit? But at the same time, this doesn’t mean you have to limit yourself only to the colour spectrum that aligns well with the tone and undertone of your skin. With our smart hacks, you truly have a lot of room to experiment based on informed choices.
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