This Inclusive Makeup Brand Has Made Finding a Lipstick To Match *Every* Skin Tone Easier Than Ever
No matter how many times you swatch, finding that perfect shade of lipstick can often feel impossible—and it's even harder when the available colors aren't formulated with your skin tone in mind. This is the issue Pakistani makeup artist Bina Khan faced time and time again while doing bridal makeup on her fellow South Asian clients.
"Nobody has been catering to people of our skin tone. We have gotten used to this idea that certain shades don't work for us, as if there's something wrong with our skin," says Khan. "When I have to make a color for me or any of my clientele, if I want to make a certain pink, I'm going to have to mix five things to get that. And that is something we've all got used to thinking is totally normal. And at a certain point, you kind of come to understand, 'Huh, that's not actually so normal, is it?'"
She knows that South Asian women aren't the only ones with this obstacle: Finding pigment products with flattering undertones is a challenge many women of color face. With that in mind, Khan decided to develop a line of lip shades that work for everyone.
Given the difficulty of creating truly universal colors, her "Lip Spectrums" are dual-ended lipsticks that allow you to mix your perfect shade. "We give you both ends of a spectrum," says Khan. "We have a brighter shade on top and a deeper shade on the other end." This allows you to tweak the color until it's perfect for you. The product is available in five color groups: Not Just Red, Not Just Peach, Not Just Champagne, Not Just Pink, and Not Just Magenta. "We call them 'Not Just' because it's not just peach, right? There are two shades in each," says Khan.
In addition to mixing colors, the double-sided lippies also allow you to mix finishes. The brighter end is a juicy, cream glaze, while the deeper end is a velvety liquid. "We wanted something with a little bit of oil in it, so you could have more playtime to blend the colors," says Khan. The glaze is highly pigmented and contains protective sunflower seed oil, moisturizing candelilla wax, and hydrating squalene. The liquid features hydrating beeswax and conditioning vitamin E. Which one you apply first is up to you.
Using the Just B Lip Spectrum is just as simple as it sounds. With one $38 product, I can mix the perfect shade for my unique complexion. Because what's "perfect" may change depending on the time of year or what I'm wearing, I love that this product provides endless options. I was particularly drawn to Not Just Champagne, a mauve-y mix that spans the spectrum from dusty pink to toasted chocolate. Mauve tones can be a hit-or-miss on my complexion depending on how deep the color runs—too light, and it looks like I set my lipstick with a powdered donut. I love that I can get just the right amount of brown in the mix to compliment my skin tone instead of working against it.
"When makeup companies have said the 'perfect peach'—'perfect peach' for who?" asks Khan. "With this, you've got the top note of a spectrum, and you've got the base note of a spectrum. Go nuts. And I would like to think that it should work on every kind of skin tone."
Shop the five Just B Lip Spectrum options below
Not Just Red features Poison Apple, a glossy and glamorous 1940s red made for South-Asian skin. It’s a rich garnet with neutral undertones, and Ruby Slippers, a liquid vibrant red made to enhance skin with warm undertones. Khan advises that
Grapefruit Pink is the glossy topper for Not Just Peach. It’s not too pink, not too peach, and not too orange. Teakwood, a ’90s brown, is a liquid inspired by the dark golden grain in teak wood. It’s a caramel brown with cool tawny undertones.
This spectrum starts with Kashmiri Cha, a neutral dusky pink with honey undertones. Ruby Cocoa is the liquid and is a toasted milk chocolate with a hint of blush pink.
This set features Mondays, a glossy fresh pink with cool undertones, and Sundays, a soft berry-pink with blue undertones.
Not Just Magenta starts with Anaar, a neutral purple with rosy undertones that embodies the jewel tones of freshly squeezed pomegranate juice. It ends with Bougainvillea, named for the popular flower of Khan’s hometown Karachi. It’s a raspberry red with plum undertones.
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