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  • Writer's pictureSiiri

Lipstick – Freedom, Hope and Happiness; rare luxuries of life

Lipstick has always been favorite makeup product of mine. Even my first ever makeup item was light pink lipgloss that gave a little colour but still looked natural enough for a young girl. I feel like lipstick is also the most iconic, recognizable and show stoping makeup product of all time. Especially red lipstick can be considered a classic as it's roots date all the way back to ancient civilizations.

"I believe in manicures.

I believe in overdressing.

I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick."

– Audrey Hepburn

So like you're able to guess, this post is another one of those series where we focus on a specific, possible revolutional and classic marks in the history of fashion. And today it's all about lipsctick and how this even dangerously addicting rouge became the ultimate symbol of makeup.

History of lipstick in brief

You could say that lipstick was invented by the ancient people of Sumerian in 3500 B.C but also people in Mesopotamia, Egypt and Japan used makeup, and in this case lipstick. During the ancient times makeup was very much a symbol of status, and had both medical and aesthetic appeal, therefore makeup wasn't only used by women but by men as well. What's more is that at the same time when poeple in Egypt and Mesopotamia adored coloring their lips, lipstick was banned in Greek because it was assosiated with prostitution.

When moving to the Middle Ages lipstick became a singn of Satan worship or dark magiacal powers, so any woman wearing lipstick or other makeup were considered as witches. Actually makeup in general was banned because of Christian believes. However many women still aded a little color to their lip salves which were popural at the time.

In the 16th centry lipstick came back, thanks to Queen Elizabeth's reing, when pale skin and red lips suddenly rose to fashion. But after Elizabeths' death lipstick's reputation fell back to its medieval position. Though, lipstick was still worn by some noble ladies, protitus, actors and actresses, and they contiuned doing so centries thereafter.

In the Victorian Era (1800s) lipsctick and especially red lips were still considered widely shocking, and applying makeup in public was something that no one did.

By the 1920s lipstick's place in a woman's daily life had become unreplaceable. Dark colors like plums, cherries and browns were considered most fahionable and together with a lip liner women were able to create 20s famous copid's bow lips. In the 1920s lipstick wasn't just a makeup item, namenly it became to symbolies powerfull, free woman during the first feminist wave. The 1920s aslo introduced world to new brands that had taken lipstick into their collection, such as Estée Lauder, Elizabeth Arden, Gurlain and Chanel.

Even the 1930's great deppression didn't stop women wearing lipstick. Now elegant, matte finish rose to popularity and shades like burgundy and deep plum were considered the hottest fashion.

In 1940s not even the second world war interfered lipstick's production, on the contrary women were encouraged to wear lipstick in order to boost up the morale and the spirits during those dark times. Bright, true reds were most popular and to many became a symbol of victory.

The 1950s was the era of hollywood icons, such as Marilyn Monroe, Elisabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn and Grase Kelly. Everybody wanted to look like the stars of the movies, so thanks to that lipstick was more popular than ever before. Even Queen Elizabeth the second created her own shade for her coronation. During this era kiss-proof and smudge proof lipsticks took a place in the market as well.

The 1960-70s took inspiration from arts and popular culture, and variety of new shades appeared on the market. Now there were something for everyone. But the biggest difference happened when it came to colors. Light, more natural shades were introdused, partly because of the hippie era that favored the au naturel look. Red was now, more or less, seen as old-fashioned and in the past. Also lipsticks with flavors became a hit.

In the 1980s it was all about shimmery and glossy lips. Now also red statement lips rose back to style, thanks to stars like Madonna, and matching lip color with your outfit was popular. Color of the era was definitely pink or rose, especially hot pink reinged the dance floors.

The 1990s grunge era made sure that more understated lips became desireable and people were even getting into permanent or semi-permanent lip coloring. Although natural lips appeared in the scene, the 1990s is definitely remembered by the dark lip liners with lighter lipstick. During this era brands like Mac and Urban Decay rose to popularity.

The 2000s were surely all about lipglosses, and shine was again in fashion. Most notable stars of the era were Britney Spears, Paris Hilton and Christina Agilera that all rocked the shimmery gloss.

Now you can get lipstick in every shade possible and also in every from imagined. Lipstick's formulas are constanly developing and makeup has really become a place of self-expression. But it doesn't matter how the times change, one thing seems to stay the same and that's the love of lipstick.

Meanig of lipstick

What lipstick means to us today is can vary a lot, partly because what makeup nowdays represents can suddenly seem quite different from the old days. I mean, everbody wants to be beautiful and desired, so that hasn't change but what has is the consept of what's considered beautiful and accepable to wear.

Makeup is not just beauty anymore, is art and a platfrom for self-expression. This stands to lipstick as well. Lipstick is no longer a mark of a dark magic nor worn only by prostitus. Now lipstick is an universal item of beauty and for many an essential part of their makeup rutine. So what lipstick means differs depending on who wears it and why. This shows that lipstick has become an ultimate declaration of feelings, meaning that you choose a color depending on your mood and not what society expects you to wear. Therefore makeup has in a way become to spread a message "free to be who you are", making makeup a platform of creativity.

No matter how times change lipstick is always going to be a luxury that everyone can afford and everybody loves. After all, lipstick has survived through times of sadness and depression, bringing us hope for the better future. Surely there must be a reason why lipstick is still here and I claim is becase its beautiful message; freedom, hope and happiness, and that is a rare power only few things in the world poses.

Thank you so much for reading!




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