Think Marilyn Monroe, Mick Jagger, Angelina Jolie and what facial feature comes to mind? Lips, yes, lips. Even more than the nose or the eyes or the eyebrows, lips are what frames the face.
Thick, luscious, pouty lips are sexy, hot, desirable. Thin pressed lips — on the other end of the radar screen — give an impression of a person who is nervous or stressed.
Here is a trivia question. Why did Scarlett O’Hara of Gone With the Wind fame bite her lips before her meeting with Rhett Butler?
Scarlett didn’t have any money so she was wearing a dress made from green satin curtains. Similarly, she had run out of make-up in the middle of the war. So, when she wanted to impress Rhett Butler, she bit her lips to make them red and puffy.
Fortunately women, trannies, and cross-dressers no longer have to risk chapped lips to get that sexy look.
What is the history of lipstick?
Even before humans crawled out of the caves, body decorations to make a personal statement were part of the psyche. Clothes, body piercings, tribal marks, and cosmetics edged their way into the global culture. Why? To be sexy, of course. Attracting the best mate possible was all part of the “survival of the fittest” reality.
The first cosmetics – such as lipstick and rouge – were made from the juice of plants and fruits. The women of Mesopotamia learned to grind gems into dust and then put the powder on their lips for added color.
Moving on from there, the bodies of cochineal insects became the pigment of choice, even though it was somewhat poisonous. It may be when the phrase “You have to suffer to be beautiful” was coined.
As the Egyptian influence waned, so did the use of lipstick. The primary consumers were the Greek and Roman actors who wanted to draw attention to their lips.
Cosmetics of all kinds were banned during the dark ages as the Catholic Church considered them “sinful.” Being burned as a witch was a good deterrent not to bother with the lippy.
In the 16th century, Queen Elizabeth 1 of Great Britain set the fashion of stark white faces with bright red lips. By the late 19th century commercial lipsticks were a must-wear for up-and-coming actresses. By the 1920s is was commonly used. Think of the flappers as an example.
By the 21st century, lipstick is worn by about 80 percent of the women in North America. Many have over 20 tubes so they can vary their lip color with their mood. To sum it up, as along as there is fashion there will be lipstick. The only thing that changes is the shades of the color.
Why did mothers tell their daughters to wear lipstick when they went out?
Until relevantly recent history, a young girl’s task was to find the best man possible to be her husband and to father her children. Lipstick made her look more attractive and, thus, upped her popularity on the spouse-opportunity food chain.
Mother often tagged, “You never know when you will meet Mr. Right” on the end of the lipstick comment.
What kinds of lipstick are there?
Walk into a department store or check the offerings on the Internet — lovelylips.net —
and be prepared to be overwhelmed by choice: red, pink, green, moisturizing, sheer, gloss.
Where to start? A few simple explanations of the various types of lipstick available will set the record straight.
First of all, there are moisturizing lipsticks. These are the best choice for those with dry lips and may contain aloe, vitamin E and/or glycerin.
Another popular niche is the satin and sheer lipsticks. Like their moisturizing sisters, these lipsticks help to keep the lips soft and kissable. Alas, they are not long-wearing so be prepared to reapply regularly.
Matte is a good choice for women who want to concentrate on the color without the glitter. This lipstick is also helped by using moisturizing products in conjunction with it.
Cream and gloss lipsticks were designed for those with small, thin lips. Touch it up with lip gloss and it is a winner.
For a sparkling event – like NYE – splash out with pearl and frosted lipstick. To avoid cracking or peeling, apply a moisturizer or lip gloss before applying the final coat.
Long-wearing lipstick is a fashion saver for those who can’t check their face in the powder room every hour or so. Some lipsticks promise at least 4-hour protection, but some are inching up towards 24-hours. Just to sure to avoid greasy, oily food, which means it is a good idea to stay away from MacDonald’s fries and KFC if you want to keep your lips looking good.
Which one is right for you?
Do your research about the types and the colors that suit you best. If you can find a signature lipstick, it will serve you well. If not, keep experimenting until you have a collection of ones you like to wear for different occasions.