Being Women

Six Lip Shades You Can’t Miss

She would carelessly apply a little more of her favourite shade, and pressing her lips together firmly, confidently get back to her seat at the table


Once, while taking a class, I asked my students to write a composition. All fifteen or sixteen years old, they were busy writing it down while Subhasree (name changed) would occasionally look up at me, flush, and smiling embarrassedly, look down again. She was trying to say something but couldn’t mouth it. I kept walking through the aisle, my hands folded at my back, as I usually do, and shortly, the bell rang. As I came out of the classroom, Subhasree ran up to me, hitting the staircase as I was about to step down. 

“What’s the matter, Subhasree?”

“Errrr… Could I ask you something, Miss? Do you promise you won’t scold me?”

“Go on.”

“What’s your lip shade? Is it too expensive or my father would buy me one if I ask him?”

I smiled. “Is this what you have been looking at?”

“Err.. sorry Miss. It’s just that I envy your lip shades.”

“Not too expensive.” I told her what shade it was and she happily walked away. 

Well, that’s it.

Who doesn’t know that a woman may forget her purse but not her how-can-I-ever-miss-you lip shade? Well, in a hurry? A woman would just comb her hair to and fro, smudge her already smudged kohl, even more, dab a little too much of her all-time go-to matte shade and sprinkle her scintillating perfume to hit the street. Caught too long in a business meeting? She would smile ravishingly, asking others to excuse her a little, and crisply lifting her vanity bag, she would stride into the washroom. Dab-dab! She would carelessly apply a little more of her favourite shade, and pressing her lips together firmly, confidently get back to her seat at the table. Lipstick is something most women can’t live without and guess what? Mentioned below are six shades that suit the Indian skin tone beautifully. If you take my suggestion, go for the matte counterparts, for they last quite long and are in vogue.


1. Pink/ Hot Pink/ Fuchsia: Pink is a colour we all love, don’t we? Be it a busy day in the office, be it a friends’ meet, be it a lunch date, be it a college reunion, you look simple, sweet and breezy in a pink or fuchsia shade. There are hundreds of shades – some fluorescent, some dormant, some sweet, some crisp. Choose yours and rock it!

2. Chocolate Brown: Just as dark as a brownie cake or a spoonful of espresso coffee powder, or as light as Nutella or an Alpenliebe toffee, brown is a must have in your collection. Brown is neither a bright shade nor a mood lifter, but well, fairly suitable for formal meetings, college seminars, or workplaces. Do you want something that’s neither butterfly bright nor bluntly unflattering? Choose a brown. 

3. Hot Red: A cosmetic pouch without the classic, ravishing, super hot red? Unthinkable. Be the show stopper at any party. Choose a bold red and you would fall for yourself. 

4. Nude (of your choice): A nude always gives you a simple, casual, and natural look. Nudes that border on pink or peach shades are the most beautiful because they suit almost all skin tones and complexions. You may devise your own unique nude shade by mixing a nude shade with a bright shade too. Instance? I mix up a nude peach with a bright fuchsia to devise a ravishing powder pink. Nude shades do real suit you in summer as they give you a tender look. 

5. Violet: For shades of violets, you have to be careful. Some shades make you look ghastly. Choose a tempered violet, like that of berries, unmistakably matte, to give yourself a mellow yet emboldened look. 

6. Coral or Peach: If you have all the five shades mentioned above, you’re pretty much done. You won’t need any more shade. But suppose you want a little more variety? Go for coral if you’re confident enough to do it. Go for peach if you want something more tender. 

WHAT YOU NEED IS ABSOLUTE CONFIDENCE Beauties, last but not the least, whatever you wear, must be worn with sheer confidence. Just remember that the perfect lip shade compliments you in a way other cosmetic items can’t. It enhances the impact of your overall personality. And well, who doesn’t know the post-colonial hangover when it comes to skin tones? Dump fairness, baby. Embrace your skin tone. Shades are countless. Pick and choose whatever, just whatever you like, and flaunt it with absolute confidence! 

By Saheli Sengupta

Professionally a teacher, Saheli has a zeal for creative writing. Mukta Gadya (Open/ Free Prose) and poetry are her comfort zones, and she principally uses her social handles to publish them. Her writings have been published in different webzines and magazines. Saheli is based in Kalyani, a city a little away from the hustle-bustle of Kolkata, and thus is a lover of nature and solitude. She is passionate about her profession, music and creative writing. She can be reached at

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