Much has been said about the lipstick index (lip index) but if you have never heard it, we tell you that it is that circumstance for which lipstick sales show a behavior that seems to go in an inverse trend towards the health of the economy . That is, the worse things are, the more we put on lipstick.
Although this is a theory that does not have the scientific endorsement of the community of economists, it does seem true that the figures speak for themselves. For example, during the Great Depression, US industrial production fell 50%, as sales of red lipsticks, among other cosmetics, grew. After the 9/11 attacks, in New York and Washington the consumption of lipstick doubled. And in Spain, in the first half of 2009, despite the crisis, they increased by 26.5%.
Lighted lips are the best camouflage for a smile that, although a little subdued on the inside, wants to be alive on the outside. In these days when uncertainty about the future hangs over our heads, something similar seems to be happening.
The lipstick index is an expression that, in the middle of the slowdown in 2001, was coined by Leonard Lauder –heir along with his brother to the fortune of the Estée Lauder Companies-. Investopedia defines it as the fact that consumers continue to spend money on small quirks such as a luxurious lipstick in periods of recession, economic downturn or when they have a little savings. In short, he argues that the worse things are, the more the lipstick gesture is performed, even if the usual brand is dispensed with in search of more affordable products.
From lips to eyes
However, now it is not the lips. With the imposition of the use of protective masks, we see how this lipstick index (named after Leonard Lauder), migrates from the lips to the eyes.
From LVMH –and, specifically, the luxury brand in fashion and cosmetics Dior– inform us that the eyeliner index is already beginning to teach the little leg. A Captify study of consumption habits during the pandemic yields interesting data.
According to the study, carried out worldwide between January 30 and May 19, the famous lipstick index is being superseded by the eyeliner index. The e-commerce search for eye makeup products is up 52% in this period (with a whopping 62% for eyelash masks alone) while the search for lipsticks is down 8%.
This study also provides an interesting fact: beauty is the category with the most searches in online stores. And shoppers look for products that match trends in real time.
This shows that consumers are adapting their purchases to the daily routines that confinement has imposed and learning new skills related to them.
And you, do you now think more about your eyes than your lips when it comes to applying makeup? The same thing happens to Chiara Ferragni. Read it here.