The word “nude” has been defined in the Merriam Webster dictionary as : “having a color (as pale beige or tan) that matches the wearer's skin tones <nudepantyhose> <nude lipstick> (2) : giving the appearance of nudity <a nude dress>”
Believe it or not this definition is a big step up from the previous definition that included “having the color of a white person’s skin,” ; abolished less than one year ago, only after DoSomething.org created a campaign calling Merriam Webster to action.
This old school, discriminatory way of thinking has been reaffirmed by the empowered in our society, especially in the beauty world. For as long as I can remember, nude lipstick has been traditionally defined as a pale pink or beige lip color. A quick Google search will prove it.
And although more brands and publications are moving toward creating and promoting nude lip colors for different complexions, there is still a strong possibility that you will encounter a microagression (or two) when dealing with the concept of nude makeup. Whether it’s coming across inaccurate product descriptions that have the word nude in them, or product names like naked or nude, it feels like a little slap in the face every time this word makes one feel like the exception as opposed to the rule.
(And yes, brown girls can "make nude lipsticks work” with a brown liner, but should we have to?)
The fact of the matter is that there are many nude lippies out there that will compliment brown skin but they are not marketed as such. They may be sold in limited quantities, online only, or available from a brand you might not have thought of.