The power of red lipstick has been known for centuries. Even one of the presidents of the United States knew that. But do you know when the first lipstick appeared?
- First lipsticks appeared around four to five thousand years ago in Ancient Mesopotamia. Women ground down gems and used the dust to color their lips. In prehistoric times, women may have used fruit juices to stain their lips.
- Early in the Greek empire, red lipstick or lip paint signaled that a woman was a prostitute. That’s why most women during that time went without makeup.
- Powerful and wealthy Ancient Egyptians – on the other hand – used lipsticks regularly. It’s said that Cleopatra made her red lipstick from crushed Carmine beetles and ants.
- Queen Elizabeth I, known for her piercing red lips. She believed that her red lipstick had healing powers and even the ability to ward off death.
- George Washington, the first President of the United States, would occasionally wear red lipstick.
- Red lipstick had a big part in the feminist movement. The first and most famous manifestation of red lipstick was in New York in 1912, when the suffragettes took to the streets and fight for the vote –they all wore bright red lipstick.
- Elizabeth Arden created red lipstick shades specifically for women in the armed forces serving during World War Two.
- Marilyn Monroe used to only wear red lipstick. She had to put on 5 coats of it so that she could receive the most appealing and sexy results.
- Elizabeth Taylor loved her red lipstick as well, but… she did not tolerate competition: in the movies with her participation only she could be the one wearing red lipstick.
- The international diplomatist written statement says that the first ladies (of all the presidents in the world) can’t wear red lipstick on official business and events.
- One of the most expensive red lipsticks in the world is Guerlain’s KissKiss Gold and Diamonds Lipstick which costs $62,000.
- CoverGirl and Harvard teamed up to survey 1,000 women to see how lip color changes the way people perceive others, and found that people who wear lipstick more often post twice as many selfies per week than those who go natural. Red lipstick lovers came out on top, posting selfies three times a week
Some numbers regarding lipsticks *
70,000: The number of beetles necessary to yield one pound of the carmine dye used by Cleopatra to paint her lips.
1880: The year Guerlain introduced the first commercially successful lipstick, a pomade of grapefruit mixed with butter and wax.
1915: The year that lipstick was first sold in oblong metal tubes.
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58: The percentage of women who owned at least one tube of lipstick in 1938.
98: The percentage of women who owned at least one tube of lipstick in 1950.
$93 million: The amount American women spent on lipstick in 1959.
1770: The year that the British parliament passed a law condemning lip painting, stating that “women found guilty of seducing men into marriage by a cosmetic means could be tried for witchcraft.”
4 pounds: It’s said that women who wear lipstick daily (even on sick days!) unintentionally eat about 4 pounds of lipstick in their lifetime.