How To Wear Brown Lipstick Without Fear

by Jessica Willingham

The brown lipstick craze has been hot for a minute now, thanks to celebs like Kylie Jenner, Rihanna, Zendaya, and pretty much everyone on any red carpet. But regular humans that don't have a makeup artist painting their faces can sometimes have a hard time figuring out exactly how to pull the color off. Worry no more, however — here's how to wear brown lipstick without fear, according to a celebrity makeup artist.

Along with the resurgence of '90s fashion, brown lipstick is back with a vengeance. It seems that we're all obsessed with the neutral lipstick, along with chokers, crew neck tees, and Doc Martens. (I hope the barely-there brows stay in the past.) If you still haven't figured out how to make the trend work for you, don't worry — there's still time! (Plus, it's easier than you think.)

“The key to wearing a modern brown is to make sure that you play with different textures," Mary Kay Global Ambassador and Project Runway makeup artist Luis Casco tells me. "In the '90s the 'brown' trend was all about a heavy matte look, whereas today mattes that are mixed with other textures (creamier or semi-matte ) make the look wearable and hip."

So while the original '90s brown lip trend was darker, heavier, and usually a matte finish, the modern trend is including many other options, from formulation to hue. "The key is to not just think about shade, but the formulation," said Casco. "You might not like a brown lipstick shade in a matte version, but might love it as a sheer or even gloss version."

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

As far as picking the best brown shade for your skin tone, here's what Casco has to say. "Some of it is trial and error and some of it is preference," says Casco. "Overall, remember you want a brown lipstick and not a nude one which means that it should have a slight tint that will stand out from your natural lip color."

For Fair Skin

Kylie Cosmetics Lip Gloss in Exposed, $15, Kylie Cosmetics

"For light skin tones, I would recommend a Wheat or Sand-like soft brown shade, where you see a slight bit of pink shade mixed with the brown," Casco tells me.

For Medium Skin

Milani Color Statement Lipstick in Teddy Bare, $6, Walgreens

Casco says medium skin tones have the most options for colors, and can rock anything from khaki to tannish brown shades. "Tailor the trend by changing the application — you can just dab the brown shade on your lips or simply mix it with a bit of lip balm to make it look sheer and not so severe."

For Dark Skin

Mary Kay Mary Kay True Dimensions Lipstick in Chocolatte, $18, Mary Kay

Casco suggests a reddish brown or slightly orange shade for darker skin tones. If you think you've gone too dark, try this trick: "Take a selfie and turn it to black and white. If your lips are all you see, then you might want to tone it down. But then again if you want to embrace a 'goth' look, go for it!"

But remember, you can always wear whatever shade of brown you want! The most important rule is to be confident with whatever you're wearing. Own it, ladies and gents!

Images: Courtesy of brands