Is it politically incorrect to describe a colour shade as nude? Some people think so. A row has blown up over a description of the dress Michelle Obama wore at a State dinner in honour of the Indian prime minister. The designer of the dress described it as a "sterling-silver sequin, abstract floral, nude strapless gown". Several commentators said that the word 'nude' was inappropriate to describe a colour, as it clearly relates to skin, and skin can be any colour. The Associated Press news agency changed its description of the dress colour from "flesh" to "champagne" after a fashion editor wondered whose flesh was being referred to, certainly not Michelle Obama's.
The OED has the definition "Of a pinkish beige colour; flesh-coloured" (and it updated the 'nude' entry only in 2009), so I suppose you can see the point of some of the negative comments. If you buy a nail polish called nude it will be pinkish beige, as per the OED definition. Now I come to think of it, it's surprising that no-one has ever thought of this before. Nude is used when describing the colour of tights, and I've just had a look in my make-up bag and see I have a Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer in nude. The container says it is suitable for 'fair to light skin tones'.
The designer who used 'nude' about his own creation is rather bemused about all the fuss. He himself is Indian -- Naeem Khan.