I Test-Drove The Buffs, Maybelline's New Range of Nude Lipsticks

Can these nude lipsticks make a bright lip-lover want to bare all?

I’ll admit it. Nude is probably the last lip colour I would reach for when getting ready to head out. As a freelancer, I spend most days makeup-free, sitting alone at my desk (don't worry; that sounded way more lonely than it actually is). When I do get made up, I want instant impact, usually going for a classic red, bright pink or coral mouth.

My go-to look, however, might be on the wane because from what I've seen so far in 2014, nude lipstick is going to be BIG. Don't believe me? Just check out all the celebrities who were sporting nude lips at the Golden Globes the other night. Kerry Washington and Olivia Wilde immediately caught my eye with their super-pale colours that almost made their lips disappear.

Amber Heard, Mila Kunis and Naomi Watts were also all wearing nudes.

There's a new lipstick collection that's a nod to this trend. Maybelline New York is launching The Buffs by Color Sensational this month, and it features 10 shades of neutral lip colours—one to suit every skin tone. I was sent eight shades to test out.

Here's a look at the bullets.

And swatched by Michelle:

So, how do you figure out which is the right nude for your skin? I have an olive complexion, so I tend to go towards warmer colours with yellow undertones. If I was going for super-pale look like Kerry or Olivia, I would use Blushing Beige (915) or Nude Lust (920), as they were almost the same colour as my skin. Know that these shades come out very light, so this type of look is not for everyone. It almost always requires a bold eye to make it work.

Stormy Sahara (945) was more my natural lip colour (darker than my skin tone), and was probably the most flattering shade on my skin. Like I said, I'm not really a nude lip girl, so I would use it in the winter when I find my lips turn either a scary greyish colour or too red from the cold weather and the dryness in the air. Matching your lip tone is an easier (and, arguably more flattering) way to wear nude and was the look Amber, Mila and Naomi went for above. Instead of whiting out their lips, they wore colours that were either slightly darker or pinker than their skin tones, so lips looked natural without disappearing.

For more impact, I liked Maple Kiss (925). It had the look of that '90s brown lipstick we saw on Kat Dennings (which got mixed reviews here), but was a little more subtle.

Unless blotted down, Truffle Tease (930) gave an almost greyish cast (not flattering) and the rich brown of Untainted Spice (950) was outside my comfort zone. Against light skin, Espresso Exposed (955) has an almost Goth-like effect.

However, the great thing about this collection is you have choices—you can match your skin tone, lip tone or just go for whatever colour you're drawn to. They also work well layered together if you're trying to achieve a specific look. I really liked the pearly shine that Naomi and Amber achieved, so I layered Bare All (910) on top of Stormy Sahara (945) to give the colour more depth.

The bottom line

Did this collection convince me to give up my brights and switch to nude? Probably not. But that's the great thing about makeup—we don't have to choose. Stormy Sahara (945) gives me another option if I ever change my ways and don't want to go for a bold lip.

Where to buy

Have your say

Are you a nude lipstick fan?

Have you checked out this collection yet?

What's your go-to lipstick shade?

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