How to choose the right shade of lipstick

A woman applies lipstick from the Artistry Studio Bangkok edition.

If you want to choose the perfect shade of lipstick, think about sweet cream, milk chocolate and espresso. Then take a tour of your jewelry box.

Confused? Don’t be. Artistry™ Creative Director of Makeup Design Rick DiCecca said those things are key first steps in selecting the shade that will light up your look instead of one that will stand out for all the wrong reasons.

“Choosing the best shades of lipstick for your skin tone starts with knowing your skin’s level of intensity and its undertone,” Rick said.

Skin tone, or skin intensity: What’s yours?

Intensity is how light or dark your skin is, while your undertone comes from the natural colors underneath your skin’s surface.

Think of your skin’s intensity in these terms, Rick said: light, light/medium, medium, medium/deep, deep, very deep.

“Think of milk when you think of a light skin tone,” he said. “Sweet cream is a good example of a light/medium skin tone. Weak tea for medium-toned skin. Milk chocolate for a medium/deep skin tone. Strong tea for a deep skin tone, and espresso or 80% dark chocolate for a very deep skin tone.”

Artistry Light Up Lip Gloss lies on a tray near gold jewelry and a makeup compact.

Skin undertone: Warm, cool or neutral?

Your undertone is where your jewelry box comes in. If it is filled with white/silver metals, you most likely have a cool undertone, Rick said. If it features mostly gold offerings, it’s a good bet you have a warm undertone.

“If you wear silver and gold metal together at the same time, then you’re more than likely a neutral undertone, therefore you have the luxury of looking great in both cool and warm tones,” he said.

Once you have this information, you’re prepared to navigate through the endless palettes. Here are Rick’s recommendations using various shades of Artistry Signature Color™  Lipsticks and Light Up Lip Glosses, but you can find shades to match these descriptions in the Artistry Studio™  collections, too!

Fair or light skin with warm undertones

Try warm pinks, coral, peach or nude beiges with a peachy undertone color like Coral Sunrise lipstick and Juicy Peach gloss from Artistry.

Fair or light skin with cool undertones

Choose pinky nudes, light roses and light mauves, including Artistry’s Misty Mauve or Pink Nude glosses.

Medium skin with warm undertone

Try deep peach and coral shades like Terracotta and Coral Sunrise from the Artistry lipstick collection, and when it comes to gloss, go for the Sweet Mellon.

Four lipstick smudges in shades of rose, mauve and cranberry are shown against a white background.

Medium skin with cool undertones

Shades of rose, mauve, berry or cranberry look best. Try Artistry’s Sheer Honey lipstick and Pink Sugar gloss.

Dark skin with warm undertones

Check out the deep, warm browns – like walnut and caramel – and also warm reds. Artistry offers Rich Cocoa in lipstick and Real Red in gloss.

Dark skin with cool undertones

Look for shades of ruby, wine and deep, cool plums. From Artistry, try the Raspberry Kiss or Rose Petal glosses.

Bonus tip: Skin tone and clothing color

Just like jewelry and makeup, knowing your skin intensity and undertone can help you select the clothing colors that look best on you, too.

Choosing colors that are opposite from your undertone will look more dramatic than those that align with it, Rick said.

“So, for a natural effect, choose colors within your undertone family,” he said. “When you want to make a statement, choose colors that are the opposite.”

To see examples of all the Artistry lipstick and lip gloss shades Rick mentions, visit the links below. And to see more of Rick’s expert tips and tricks for makeup, check out additional blogs at Amway Connections.

To learn more about Amway, its brands and its products,
click on the website where you live:

United States


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Some products may not be available in Canada or the Dominican Republic or may be sold under a different name.



  • Karen says:

    Great tips! I actually ‘get it’ now! Thank you so much!!

  • Sandi says:

    These are such great tips on how to choose a color palette. Thank you!

  • Catalina says:

    This was awesome! Thanks for the information, now I can comprehensively choose my lip stick shade!!!

  • Nancy says:

    Is Artistry makeup gluten free?

    • Amway Connections says:

      Hi Nancy,

      While we do not intentionally add gluten to any Amway beauty products, we are not able to certify that these products are gluten-free. Although we obtain our ingredients from reliable and trusted suppliers who maintain our high standards for safety, quality and efficacy, we cannot guarantee the complete absence of traces of gluten due to possibility of cross contamination during the production process.

      If you have questions about gluten or any other allergen in Amway products, please check the product label and discuss the ingredients with your healthcare provider.

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