Ladies, where would we be without our makeup?
Famous makeup guru Max Factor once said, “A woman who doesn’t wear lipstick feels undressed in public. Unless she works on a farm.” And TIME magazine reported as far back as 1958 that, “The beauty industry fears no recession, for a woman will give up food before her pursuit of beauty – and often because of it.”
Apparently, things haven’t changed much since then. Fifty years later, beauty retail website feelingunique.com asked 1,000 women in the UK about their shopping habits. They found that nearly one in three female respondents said they would prefer to eat less than reduce their spending on “essential” beauty items.
In the survey, 75 percent of the women considered makeup and body treatments as “everyday essentials” rather than luxury items.
So, how did we get to this place? Well, the desire to look beautiful and adorn the face is nothing new. In fact, the origin of lipstick dates back to 5,000 BC in the Sumerian region of Ur, according to Jessica Pallingston, author of Lipstick: A Celebration of a Girl’s Best Friend.
Ancient Egyptians loved lip paints and were masters at mixing color and precise application, Pallingston also maintains. Perhaps the most famous Egyptian woman, Cleopatra, was said to have used crushed ants and carmine beetles, which gave a deep red pigment, to adorn her lips.
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Here are a few of my Aging Backwards tips for lips:
Tone it down. It may seem counter-intuitive, but as we age, we actually need less makeup, not more, according to Bruce Grayson, celebrity makeup artist for both the Emmy awards and the Oscars. Instead of bright or dark lipstick, stick with a color that closely matches your natural shade and brush some clear gloss over it for a fresh, young daytime look. For evening, opt for a deeper shade of the daytime color and a tinted gloss.
Go blue. To make teeth look dazzling white, choose lip colors with blue undertones, such as the lightest shades of wine, plum, or rosy pink. Skip the orange and coral lip colors – they can make teeth appear yellow.
Exfoliate. Skin on the lips is delicate, but still needs to be exfoliated. My favorite trick is to use a clean toothbrush – minus the toothpaste, of course – to lightly brush my lips and exfoliate dead cells.
Remember the lip liner. Outlining the lips with liner gives a more finished look to them and also keeps lipstick from “feathering” outside the natural lip line. My shortcut: I line my lips with a color that matches my natural lip color, then fill it in over the entire lip area. Then, I put a light gloss right over that, skipping lipstick altogether for a natural look that stays on longer.
Here’s to staying youthful.