Expert Advice on Lipstick Shades

Find the perfect lipstick shade.

What is the best way to pick your lipstick shades? Read this Ask the Expert response for some ideas.

Lip Shade for Brown Eyes and Reddish Hair

Reader Question

Dear Dana,

How do I know what skin tone I am? Also, with my brown eyes and reddish brown hair, what shades of eyeshadows and lipsticks should I wear?

~~Thank You, Carla

Expert Reply

Dear Carla,

If you are very fair, burn before you tan, and your skin has pink or porcelain under tones you most likely have pink (light) skin. If you are Caucasian and have beige or yellow undertones you have yellow (light to medium) skin tone. If you are Mediterranean, Latino, a fair-skinned African American, or of a dark mixed-race, then you probably have Olive skin (medium).

With your eye and hair color, I would say that you are most likely medium with warm undertones. For golden brown or black-brown eyes choose apricot, lemon or champagne for the highlighter and grey, spruce, chocolate, olive or purple for the contour. For your lips, try terracotta, true red or cinnamon. To really make a statement with your wardrobe add tomato red, rust, navy, emerald green, and purple. Just remember to keep it vivid and warm!


Warm or Cool Shade of Lipstick?

Reader Question

I need help choosing the right shade of lipstick. I have a burgundy sun dress with ivory details. Do I wear a warm or cool shade of lipstick? I always use lip-liner to make my lips fuller. I'm a brunette with fair skin, yellow undertones, and light brown eyes.

Expert Reply


I would suggest matching the color of your lips to your overall skin tone first and then look to see if it's working for or against your outfit. For example, for a classy look, match your lip color precisely to the hue and brightness of one of your accessories, or your jewelry. In general, for your "warm" skin, hair and eye color, I would suggest a medium nude, salmon pink, coral, or golden brown. ~~Dana .

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Expert Advice on Lipstick Shades