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What does “nude” mean to you? For years, the skin tone standard consisted of pinkish, beige, or slightly tanned hues. Regardless of your ethnic background, if you wanted “nude” apparel — heels, hosiery, or any sort of underwear — you’d be limited to a few shades that wouldn’t necessarily match the unique color of your skin. Nude Barre, an inclusive hosiery, intimates, and loungewear brand, is challenging the assertion that nude looks one type of way.
If you’ve ever struggled with finding undergarments with coloring similar to your own skin tone, you are not alone. Nude Barre founder and CEO Erin Carpenter understands this feeling all too well. “I started Nude Barre based off a series of frustrating and embarrassing moments I had as a young professional dancer,” the Washington, DC native explained in a YouTube interview with BET Her. After being accepted to a prestigious dance program at the Kennedy Center, Carpenter was denied entry to her first class for wearing “nude” tights and light pink pointe shoes that didn’t match her brown skin. After that, she explained, “I would have to dye my tights and undergarments on a weekly basis — [because] when you go to a store, they’d only have options in tan or beige, and I’m not beige.”
Nude Barre has revolutionized the hosiery and intimates space with its 12 diverse shades, ranging from a barely-there tan to a true black, and every taupe, beige, tawny, and brown in between. To ease the process of matching your IRL dermis with a digital color swatch, the brand offers a number of virtual tools to achieve the most accurate match. You can take the “Find Your Shade” quiz that guides you through prompts and helps you land on the hue for you. You can also test the beta version of their color matching software — simply upload a photo of your skin to get the most accurate shade match.
If you want to dip your toes into the Nude Barre world, scroll to shop some of their best sellers. We’ve included their famous footed opaque tights, bralette, and seamless underwear in this on-site shopping story, but there’s an array of intimates on the brand’s stocked website if you’d like to see more.
Footed Opaque Tights, $22
The brand’s hero product, the opaque footed tights, are available in up to a 5X. Whether you are a dancer or an office worker, these basic stockings tights are a universal fave — they even have the drag queen seal of approval. One reviewer enthusiastically gushed, “I bought multiple pairs for my drag persona, and they’re perfect! Color match is amazing, kinda pale with pink undertones, and they are VERY stretchy and cover padding effortlessly.”
Shop the Footed Opaque Tights in all 12 shades at Nude Barre
Seamless Bikini Panty, $24
The seamless bikini panty is all about next-level comfort. Some reviewers reported “forgetting [they’re] even on,” while others love that the panties “will not cut into your thigh.” It’s important to note that some consumers suggested the underwear can run small, so keep that in mind when making a purchase.
Shop underwear in all 12 shades at Nude Barre
The bralette is made of an ultra-comfy polyamide and elastane fabric mix. The elastane adds flexibility and support for tackling daily tasks or just lounging around. One reviewer enthusiastically explained, “the bra is supportive, super soft and comfortable, and sufficiently covers my girls.” Its simple design makes a perfect go-to for a wide range of styles from a summery dress to a button-down. For now, the bralette accommodates people up to a size 20, but we are hoping for a change in the near future.
Shop bralettes in all 12 shades at Nude Barre
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