Cinnamon Crunch. Crème Caramel. Scarlet Letter. Cocoa Mocha. Divine Wine. IFKYK.
If you don’t, sorry about that.
These are names of lipstick shades that I love. I own more than 20 lipsticks that I have been hoarding since 2016, so a couple of them have definitely crossed their best before. Who cares when they’re that perfect shade of nude between pink and brown that’s cool toned but not too cool toned and goes with your undertones in all kinds of light!
If you’re thinking, “What is she on about?” I’ll admit I was the same way until a few years ago. And then I fell into the lipstick rabbit hole, and minus two pandemic years, I’m still crawling in there.
I. LOVE. LIPSTICK. Like all the other humans who have loved lipstick for centuries.
Safiya Nygaard, a famous YouTuber who calls herself a “lipstick fiend”, made a video about the history of lipstick, where she detailed the evolution of lipsticks from face paints that early humans wore to ward off evil spirits to the multi-billion dollar industry it is today. Safiya also did another video where she melts hundreds of lipsticks together if you’re in the mood for pop culture spectacle as opposed to pop culture exploration.
Another fun thing to watch is this video documenting how lipsticks are made in big factories by Refinery29, which made me fantasize about visiting a factory for the first and only time in my life.
Like all other make-up, lipstick is a contentious issue in our gender-obsessed world. This blog post by the mum of a four-year-old boy who wants to wear lipstick hints at related complexities (and small but significant victories against the jailors of the gender prison).
There’s also a theory that lipstick sales are inversely related to the health of an economy which could be an enticing avenue to wander for those who find money talk enthralling (I bow out).
One of my favourite ways to unwind is watching YouTube videos where women with different skin tones swatch nude lipsticks. It leaves me feeling guilty after, like some people feel after they’ve eaten a particularly big slice of chocolate cake. So I guess lipstick is my chocolate cake.
I’m tempted to end this by comparing lipsticks to David and all of life’s problems to Goliath, but I fear ostracization for the crime of hyperbole. So I won’t.
I will say that lipstick makes me feel a little better on gloomy days. I know that millions of people around the world feel the same. It’s an instant pick me up, like a ray of golden treacle sunshine piercing through grey clouds. And yes, lipstick tells many stories about gender and the economy too, but me, I just like them colours.
P.S. When I find a lipstick swatch video I like, I send it to my other friends who enjoy lipsticks. Maybe you, who presumably enjoys reading Just One Thing, could forward it to your friends who like this kind of thing?