The Best Drugstore Nude Lipsticks (And A Couple Of Lemons)

These affordable picks are helping me ease into the scary world of nude lips.
Publish date:
October 2, 2014
Revlon, drugstore beauty, drugstore makeup, nude lipstick, maybelline, L'oreal, milani, wet n wild

I’ve been against nude lipsticks for the longest time, but I finally decided it was time to bite the lipstick bullet and find one that works for me. Since I’m on a budget, I headed straight for the drugstore to add four nude lipsticks to the three I already own. All seven of those drugstore nude lipsticks are reviewed below.

I’ve owned this one for a while, and it’s my least favorite. It smells strongly of Play-Doh to me and was too pale. Although it was moisturizing, I found that it settled into lines.

The good news is that this line comes in 10 nude shades, and they’re not all pale pink--there’s nudes for women of all skin shades. Perhaps there’s a perfect nude shade in the line for me (and for you, too). Blushing Beige is the second-lightest shade in the line, so I think I need to go up a shade or two.

Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balm Stain in Complex

I previously wrote about my dislike for this particular nude lipstick. It was my first nude lipstick attempt and I didn’t realize that when I purchased it. I’ve come around a bit since then, although I still prefer to wear it as a cream blush rather than as a lipstick. It has a very peachy tint and the matte finish can feel and look rather drying, so be sure to exfoliate first and use a lip balm.

This one smells the best out of the entire bunch, with a fresh peppermint scent. If you don’t mind a peach-leaning nude that requires a little lip maintenance, then give this one a shot.

Revlon Super Lustrous Matte Lipstick in Nude Attitude

This one was odd. The tube says it is matte, but it was quite iridescent on my lips. Like Complex, it leans toward peach but it’s paler and shinier.

It’s fragrance-free, so it has that going for it, but otherwise I didn’t care for it much. It settled into lines and the color made my lips look weird.

Wet N Wild Fergie Creme Lipstick in Fergie Daily

I was originally looking at my usual favorite Wet N Wild lipsticks, the Megalast Lip Colors, to find a nude. The only one was Bare It All, which has great reviews online, but in the store it looked way too brown for me. It’s only $2 so I might go back at some point to try it out, but for now I ended up grabbing a slightly more expensive lipstick from their Fergie line instead. Fergie Daily looked a bit lighter than Bare It All, although still somewhat brown-based. I ended up really liking this one.

It’s very thick and creamy, with just the right amount of shine. It’s a true nude with the perfect mix of brown and pink to cancel out my natural lip pigmentation. It's basically unscented (you might catch a very, very faint scent) and even the packaging is a tad better than the usual Wet ‘n’ Wild Megalast Lip Color disaster. This one was a surprising success.

MUA Makeup Academy Color Infused Lip Balm in Nude

I already wrote about this one here, so I’ll keep this short. It’s very moisturizing and shiny (not shimmery), given that it’s surrounded by a balm. The color itself is like my lips but better. There is a sweet scent but it doesn’t bother me like some do.

The only downside to this lipstick is that it’s possible for the color in the middle to wear down while the surrounding balm doesn’t. This means I had to give the top a little trim so it would all stay balanced and the color would be deposited along with the balm. This may seem annoying, but it’s worth it to me because I like this lipstick that much.

Milani Color Statement Lipstick in Nude Creme

This may be my favorite out of this entire list. It's the perfect pink-nude, with a creamy consistency that feels great and doesn't settle into lines. The only downside is the strong scent, which to me smells like a too-sweet, fake fruit fragrance. I'm willing to overlook it because this lipstick looks and feels so lovely.

If you can handle a strong scent, then I absolutely recommend this one. I plan on keeping it in my purse for daily wear (not something I ever thought I'd say about a nude lipstick).

L’Oreal Colour Riche Lipcolour in Fairest Nude

This one didn't wow me as much as the Milani, but I think I'll probably be coming back to it almost as often. It's a truer nude in that it's paler and not as pink. It has a lot of sheen, feels creamy on, and doesn't settle into lines. It comes close to washing me out, but in the end it somehow manages to perfectly cancel out my lips' natural pigment without making me look dead. It will pair perfectly with very dramatic eye looks.

I wholeheartedly recommend it, even though it also has a very strong, annoying fruity fragrance. I think I'm going to stop now before I get a migraine.


So my favorites were the Milani and Makeup Academy nudes for natural everyday looks, and the Wet N Wild Fergie and L'Oreal nudes for more dramatic nude lipstick looks. Below I'm wearing Milani's Nude Creme with a faux fur coat and dark eye makeup (that my hooded eyes mostly swallowed up).

Now, please let me know if you have any recommendations for a great nude lipstick for those of us on a budget!