It’s easy to overlook this particular shade of neutral, but like all classic ‘barely there’ tones, nude provides an essential counterpart to bolder colours, while on its own being a serene foil to a richer decorative scheme or to a collection of artwork.
A hybrid shade of biscuit, champagne and beige, the colour, with its associations to flesh, was a popular choice in the fashion industry in the 1920s and 1930s for corsets, girdles, pantyhose and bras, re-emerging in the 1990s and early 2000s when the ‘underwear-as-outerwear’ trend took flight. These days, when referring to colour, the term ‘nude’ is rightly considered outdated, due to the lack of inclusiveness and diversity that the hue associated with the word suggests. Nonetheless, from lipsticks to heels, underwear to nail varnish, the moniker has stuck and it remains a perennially popular shade.
In interiors, this warm neutral can work well balanced against deep creams, greens and shades of blue, as well as earthy terracottas and soft reds. With greater ranges of nude hues finally being produced, ‘nude’ is now considered a spectrum and not a shade.