I’ve spent the last week focused on an office special event and helping both my older daughters relocate. The weather is juuuuust on the cusp of changing to actual spring here, at which point I will feel the insatiable urge to bust out my brightest lipsticks – everything from cheerful peony to a blinding fuchsia.
But the past couple of months have seen the daily wearing of a single lipstick, one of those subtle, your-natural-lips-but-better shades…. been awhile since we’ve done one of those posts, right?
The so-called “universally flattering” shades of nude are all too brown or gray for me (looking at you, Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk!) I’m better with a pinky nude (nude-y pink?) that hits the apparently minuscule sweet spot between too warm (which makes me look red) and not warm enough (which makes me look dead.)
As I was messing around in Sephora, I realized NARS had something like 18 nudes named after various famous women – and google tells me they came out in a set of 40 Audacious shades in the summer of 2014. I have no idea how I’ve failed to notice them before; maybe my lackluster experience with their original nude shades? Because collectively, the newer, softer Audacious shades are gorgeous.
I mean, look at these beauties. Yeah, they’re not cheap, but compared to other fancy-pants brands, at $34 they’re not all that expensive either. The formulas of the ones I tried were mostly lovely – creamy and opaque, although a few felt drier. (I hate to judge based on an unboxed Sephora tester anyway; who knows what horrors it’s been through?) And the all-black case with black-on-black lettering and its magnetic lid that snaps shut is a subtle, luxurious delight.
I’m lucky enough to have a Sephora with natural outdoor light, and Itried all of the nudes and soft pinks that looked remotely plausible as you-but-better lipcolor. I was stunned at the number that looked pretty good on me, and that is Not A Thing that happens when I try on that natural lip-tone type of lipstick. Really, I probably could have worn three or four as a flattering, subtle lipcolor, and it was only by trying them successively that I settled on the One.
The others looked good, but you know you’ve found the one when it makes your whole face light up, and my daughters (who I’d dragged with me) immediately said, “that one!” For me, that one is NARS Apoline, which in the NARS line is a “pink rose” but on me is an almost-indiscernible but highly flattering pinky nude, in large part because it cancels out my lips’ slightly blue tinge (which is why lipsticks pull crazy cool on me.)
Who’s Apoline? Well, I don’t know. I can guess at a lot of them, from Anita to Gloria to Claudia to Audrey, but my googling hasn’t produced a definitive list of the women these shades honor. If you have that information, enlighten me, please.
So, what lipstick, pencil etc. are you wearing these days if any? Do you switch them out seasonally?