Tried and tested: 10 of the best nude lipsticks for every skin tone

After testing over 350 different lip products, the results are in.

best nude lipsticks

by Jazzria Harris |
Updated on

It’s the lippy that sees us from easy, everyday wearing to sultry evening looks, and while the humble nude may not be quite as iconic as a statement red lip, it definitely deserves its place as a make-up bag must-have.

So, when the heat team set themselves (and seven beauty buffs) the mission of finding their perfect nude it definitely caused a lot of discussion.

From finding the perfect shade for every skin tone to testing the best applicators for different lip shapes, we put to the test over 350 different lip products so you don’t have to. So, here’s our guide to the best of the best, to make navigating the world of nudes a whole lot easier – you’re welcome.


The best nude lipsticks 2023, as tested by us

Max Factor Colour Elixir Lipstick in Nude Rose1 of 10
CREDIT: Amazon

Max Factor Colour Elixir Lipstick in Nude Rose

"My all-round winner! It went out really easily and felt more like a balm. The colour is also perfect for me (slightly darker than my natural lips)." - Tested by Kay

Anastasia Beverly Hills Matte Lipstick in Spice2 of 10
CREDIT: Cult Beauty

Anastasia Beverly Hills Matte Lipstick in Spice

"This was the perfect matte lipstick - really long lasting but not drying at all. I love that it's a darker, more sultry nude. I wouldn't wear it everyday but it's perfect for a date or night out." - Tested by Sadie @sadiebass_

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Fia3 of 10

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Fia

"I have full lips and don't tend to use liquid lipsticks as I find the application messy, so, I was surprised that this was my absolute favourite. it went on like a dream, was food and waterproof and in terms of shade - it's my perfect nude!" - Tested by Abie

Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Pillow Talk Original4 of 10
CREDIT: Charlotte Tilbury

Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Pillow Talk Original

"This is my all-time favourite lippie, and I knew I wouldn't divert! It's velvety in texture without being drying, while the colour is the perfect 'my lips but better' shade." - Tested by Rachael @thebretonbird

MUA Super Stylo Satin Finish Lipstick in Super Nude5 of 10
CREDIT: Superdrug

MUA Super Stylo Satin Finish Lipstick in Super Nude

"I really loved how sheer this product was - something I look for in a nude lippy. The colour was pale enough to be my kind of nude - I tend to veer away from anything too beige. The application was easy and even and the ideal consistency for daytime. I'd simply amp it up with a lip liner for evening. And for £3 it's an absolute steal!" - Tested by Laura @laura_puddy

Fenty Stunna Lip Paint in Unveil6 of 10

Fenty Stunna Lip Paint in Unveil

"I love Fenty Lip Paints but I didn't know they did a good nude. This shade was a great fit for me, it made me look like I had a holiday glow. It stayed in place all day and my only negative is it was a little drying, so I added a clear lip gloss on top." - Tested by Dominique

Anastasia Beverly Hills Matte Lipstick in Petal7 of 10

Anastasia Beverly Hills Matte Lipstick in Blush Brown

"For a matte lipstick I was suprised by how soft and creamy this was. Its more of a pinky-toned nude which was very wearable for everyday." - Tested by Georgina @georginagoldingx

GOSH Copenhagen Luxury Nude Lips in Stripped8 of 10

GOSH Copenhagen Luxury Nude Lips in Stripped

"GOSH isn't a brand I'd usually try so was pleasantly surprised by how much I loved this. It has a slightly red undertone which didn't wash my out and made my skin look brighter." - Tested by Jazzria @jazzieharris

MAC Love Me Lipstick in Tru00e8s Blasu00e89 of 10

MAC Love Me Lipstick in Très Blasè

"I love MAC lipsticks and this new range is even better. The argan oil meant my lips stayed soft all day as well as giving the perfect peachy-pink nude." - Tested by Sasha @vrsasha

MAC10 of 10

MAC Love Me Lipstick in Under The Covers

"I never wear lipstick but this was surprisingly easy to wear. I applied it straight from the bullet and it felt really light, almost as if I wasn't wearing anything." - Tested by Rachel @rachel_tomlin

Photography: Vincent Dolman, Hair & Makeup: Enya Sullivan, Hair & Makeup Assistant: Melissa Collins

What actually is a nude lip?

While traditional ideas of nude lipstick may take you back to images of Kimmy K’s totally neutral pout circa 2010 (who remembers Dream Matte Mousse lips?), or even worse the foundation lips trend of the 90s, these days what constitutes a nude lip is much more diverse.

In 2020, the perfect nude shade should give a 'your lips but better' finish to enhance rather than mask. This means that the perfect nude will vary from person to person.

Luckily, rather than just a one-for-all standard, there are an array of different shades and undertones available so you can tailor a nude lip colour that’s right for you. So how do you find your fit?

Tips to finding your perfect nude lipstick...

1. Start with your skin tone

When selecting a nude, you want a shade that enhances your natural skin colour. Swatch the lippy on the underside of your arm and see how it sits against your skin – It should leave your complexion looking radiant - not washed out or dull. It's helpful to swatch more than one shade to get a good comparison.

2. Consider your lip colour

Your natural lip colour will also play a part. It’s important not to go more than a shade lighter than your natural lip colour, especially if you have pigmented lips, as you don’t want them to disappear completely.

3. Think about the undertone

Next take into consideration the undertones of your nude – for paler skin tones opt for nudes that have a hint of pink, while tan skin tones benefit from nudes with a peach undertone. For dark skin tones chocolate nudes with berry undertones are key.

4. Build yourself a nude wardrobe

Finally, don't constrict yourself to one nude lip product as what you want from your nude lipstick will vary depending on the occasion, your eye make-up or just how you want to feel that day. A creamy lipstick is great for everyday as it'll nourish your lips whilst it colours, whereas a matte lippy will give serious staying power for date night or drinks. When it comes to nude, more is more.

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