Why is there only one shade of nude?

Typical mainstream shops on the high street or in the shopping centre like H&M or New Look give you the option to buy “nude” clothing. Women may choose to buy nude bras, underwear, vests or tights for a more discreet look. For example, you might not want your bra strap to look too obvious under your thin-strapped top. Or you didn’t have time to do your legs (or couldn’t be bothered to do your legs) so you wear skin-coloured tights and hope no one notices.

However, this ‘nude’ colour only works for certain people. It is only targeted towards certain people. It only matches a certain skin colour. What about the women that do not fall into this demographic?

When a darker-skinned woman walks into the shop, she does not get to choose a “nude” bra. There is just a black bra that would be less likely to show through her clothes but it doesn’t match her skin-tone.


There are darker-skinned women and also lighter-skinned women that tend to go unnoticed in the mainstream fashion industry. Although online I see women of various skin colours wearing different shades of brown and peach that match their skin-tone on Instagram, I am yet to see a brown ‘nude’ bra in the shops that I can buy. It feels like we’re being ignored like we don’t exist in the market?

If I owned one of those shops, I would introduce a range of “nudes”. Obviously, it would be impossible to have every single shade that matches every single person’s skin tone because everyone is different. But, having a range would at least give all women a choice. It would give them the ability to choose “nude” if they wanted to.

Even though it may be possible to find a range of nude shades online, it would be nice for clothes shops to recognise that “nude” isn’t just one colour. It would be nice to walk into a shop and see that I have not been forgotten about.


I believe it is time that these shops recognise that the female population isn’t made up of just one type of person or one shade of person. It is time for them to be more inclusive and cater to everyone.


Written by a curious mind.