L-R: Bittersweet, Urban Cafe, Chestnut
EDIT: Check out my updated 2020 post here.
Brown lip liners changed the game for me.
When I bought my very first brown liner it opened up a whole new world of beautiful nude lipstick shades that I have previously avoided because at that time perfect nudes for WoC were non-existent. If I’m being honest they are still pretty hard to come by but that’s another story for another time.
Over time I’ve tried numerous brown lip liners, warm and cool tones, waxy and dry, pigmented and not so pigmented, the list is endless but I’ve recently found 3 perfect brown lip liners that are now Holy Grail items to me.
MAC Prolongwear Lip Pencil in Bittersweet | £15.50
This was an unplanned purchase, I can tell you now, as there is no way I would plan to spend £15 on a lip pencil. I went into MAC looking for Chestnut but it was sold out, as I had my mind on returning home with some kind of brown pencil, I swatched a bunch until I found Bittersweet.
Bitterweet is a very creamy and insanely pigmented lip pencil which is almost worth the £15.50.
Described as an “intense brown” this lip pencil is perfect for brown skin. This particularly shade of brown which is deep brown with a hint of red lends well to blending with nude lipsticks. This was and has been my go-to for nude lipsticks and the texture also means you can wear this solely as an all over lip colour, making this a two in one product for all skin tones, not just deep dark.
If you need a really good brown lip pencil that’s easy to apply and pigmented this is your option – steep but a staple.
NYX Slide On Lip Pencil in Urban Café | £5.50
This purchase is a newer one but I know it will be a repurchase!
NYX Cosmetics finally got their stuff together and we are now lucky enough to be able to purchase their latest offerings online and instore!
Whilst visiting their stand in my local Boots, the sales assistant put me on to this lip liner, I think she knew it would be a staple for WoC.
Urban Café leans more to the red side of things in comparison to the other lip pencils but this isn’t really an issue at all, in fact I like it!
This is also another amazingly creamy product, so much so it makes me think – do I need to repurchase Bittersweet?
It looks perfect as an all over lip colour as well, the amount of warmth it has holds well and let’s face it, it’s pretty damn affordable. NYX if you could extend the browns for your lip pencil I would happily buy them all!
MAC Lip Pencil in Chestnut | £13.00
The OG of brown lip pencils.
You know you’re moving up in the lipstick game if this is in your collection, that being said, I only bought this lip pencil last year – late I know.
If you’re looking for a brown lip liner that will never fail you – Chestnut is it.
Out of the three, this lip pencil is the deepest richest brown which is possibly the reason why this is such a staple for WoC.
Chestnut has the ability to transform your ashiest nude lipstick into a gorgeous nude lip colour for your skin tone. It is not as creamy as the others mentioned above but it does offer superb colour pay off with no tugging or real effort making it a breeze to use and blend.
Again, as it’s MAC, it is steep in price but if you like your nude lipsticks you have to give it a go!
If you want to see how I use brown liner for my ashiest nudes click HERE for a video I created for the Yahoo Style UK site.
Let me know if you use any of these liners or what other recommendations you have for brown lip liners!
Yeah lip liners for brown/dark skin girls really can change the stakes in our lip game. I've been wanting to buy Chestnut for the longest time but that price tag has always been off putting – aggh I think I'm going to get it.
I have Urban Cafe too – its amazing and creamy!
Never heard of Bittersweet may look into it – thanks for the heads up :o)
Funnily enough I find myself reaching for Urban Cafe and Bittersweet more than Chestnut, nevertheless, I like them all!