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At this point, my friends and I only reference something as “nude” to be ironic. “Oh, this nude lip,” we joke about a creamy, ghostly shade. “Love those nude tights,” we kid, referring to sheer fabric the color of absolutely no one. Our biggest laughs, though, always come from discussions about nude heels—not a single one of us is the same skin tone, so of course our ideal nude shoes look entirely different and are sometimes impossible to find. Friends share closets, but when it comes to nude heels, we simply do not! Little by little, the fashion world is taking care to reimagine its limiting perspective of one overarching true nude, in the same way so many of its customers already have. Naturalizer’s brand-new True Colors collection is the perfect example.
“At Naturalizer, standing for women has always been our thing, so creating a collection that celebrates all women and the unique skin we’re in was meaningful to us,” Angelique Joseph, Vice President of Design at Naturalizer, tells STYLECASTER. “Nude is a not a one-shade-fits-all-color, so it was important for us to think differently and create an inclusive spectrum of neutral tones that recognizes the diversity in all women.”
They aren’t the first brand to do so—Brooklyn-based Salone Monet’s gorgeous line of hand-dyed heels comes to mind—but with this range, Naturalizer hopes to make nude shoes for everyone an even more attainable reality. A more scaled-down version of the True Colors collection launched back in 2019, but the 2021 upgrade features even more silhouettes and shade options.
“This collection is a celebration of who we are when we are honestly ourselves,” says Joseph. “The collection is designed to empower our consumer’s acceptance in her true color. No apologies.” So of course, they turned to the shoppers themselves for guidance when finalizing all 10 shades, from Barely Cremé to Mahogany.
“Consumer insights and feedback drives our decisions and design process and helped us arrive at the 10 shades we are debuting this season,” Joseph shares. “The colors we designed are complimentary to every skin stone and considering each shade’s undertones. We wanted to make sure we had a balance of pink undertone shades and yellow undertones within each grouping from the light, medium to dark skin tones.”
If you’ve already got some beloved Naturalizer shoes in your closet, you’re in luck—they selected their most popular silhouettes to get the 10-tone True Colors treatment, and the current collection includes two pairs of sandals, flats, heels and sneakers, starting at just $69.99. Not every shade is offered for every shoe, but the Naturalizer team hopes to expand the True Colors offering over the next few months.
As the seasons change, the True Color line will continue to grow—and Joseph intends to make sure that, with every new innovation, the customer and her right to a good nude shoe is prioritized. “The notion of inclusivity needs to be central to every decision,” she shares.
“As a designer, I think about product through the lens of representation and inclusion, empowering consumers with styles that celebrate their individuality and embrace diversity, all while recognizing her lifestyle needs that continually change,” says Joseph. “Creating fashion that addresses the multifaceted lifestyle, we are living in while making you feel empowered about your own personal style, feels like a good place to start.”
If you and your friends also joke at the evasive concept of fashion’s idealized “nude,” consider browsing some options from Naturalizer’s new True Colors collection below and checking out the entire range in all ten colorways on the brand’s website now.
The classic Vera Heel is perfect for any formal occasion requiring a good nude shoe. Pictured here in shade English Tea.
If you’re in need of a “wear everywhere, everyday” shoe, look no further than the comfortable Maxwell Flat. Pictured here in shade Mocha.
Need a new pair of kicks? The Astara Sneakers feature a chic faux-croc detailing. Pictured here in shade Cafe.
If bling is your thing, the Fallyn Sandal will speak to your soul for a glitzy spring and summer. Pictured here in Barely Cremé.