The use of cosmetics is estimated to have begun over ten thousand years ago in Africa, long before Cleopatra’s time. The Old Testament of the Bible mentions that Jezebel painted her eyelids, and the Romans are well-known for their use of kohl as eyeliner. Throughout the ages, women – and men in some cultures – have used makeup to enhance their physical beauty. Virtually every culture throughout the world has incorporated cosmetics of one type or another into their unique identities.
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The Demand for Makeup Will Always Remain the Same
Each culture had its own conception of beauty, and cosmetics were used to achieve it. For instance, upper-class European nobility did not need to perform the same hours of back-breaking outdoor labor as their poorer countrymen, leaving them with fairer complexions. As a result, light skin became the standard by which many of these cultures judged a person’s status and beauty. Not surprisingly, cosmetic products were developed to help women achieve the pale, delicate look that was in vogue at the time. Contrast that with today’s emphasis on the sunless tan and on products that help women to achieve a glow that simulates time spent outdoors.
Times and fads change, but consumers’ interest in makeup seems to be constant – if not rising. Walk into any drugstore, department store or beauty retailer and you will probably have no difficulty believing that the cosmetics industry is a financial behemoth in this country. In fact, it rakes in a whopping $56.8 billion, with makeup taking up approximately 14 percent of those profits.
Just How Much is Actually Spent on Makeup?
The numbers get even more interesting when you begin to look at how much money American women spend each year on things like lipstick, eyeshadow, eyeliner, foundation, blush and concealers. Only 8 percent of women spend less than $50 annually on these items, a testament to the power of advertising as well as the transformations some of these products can bring about in a person’s appearance. A slightly larger number of females, 13 percent, shell out between $50 and $100 annually. Thirty-four percent spent between $100 and $200, leaving almost half of the population (45 percent) to indulge to the tune of more than $200 a year on makeup. Thanks to the wide array of cosmetics choices that are now available, ladies of every possible skin tone, color preference and beauty goal can easily obtain products that meet their needs. The availability of personal consultants at department stores as well as online ordering and high-quality products even available at discount retailers makes it very easy to spend a significant portion of one’s income on beauty products such as makeup.
In fact, the average woman spends $15,000 on makeup alone over the course of her lifetime at the rate of about $216 per year. To keep her lips vibrant and beautiful, she will spend $1789; $2,750 goes for the eyeshadow she uses to enhance the beauty and prominence of her eyes. For those all-important and oh-so-trendy long lashes, the average women gives up $3,770.
You Can Purchase it Just About Anywhere
Where are most ladies purchasing their makeup these days? While making makeup buys is happening more and more online with each passing year, the majority of consumers – 65 percent – still choose offline locations. Some enjoy the in-person touch and regularly go to department stores and to retailers specializing in making individualized recommendations and doing product demonstrations. Often, once a lady achieves the look she is happy with thanks to these professional estheticians, she will purchase the same products online because of the convenience. If she simply wants to try out a new look and does not have the time or inclination to go to a makeup counter, she might purchase some less expensive items at a drugstore or discount beauty center.
With the increased presence of specialty day spas where services such as facials and makeovers have become popular, many consumers are also making their makeup purchases from these high-end specialty retailers. After they see the products applied professionally to their own faces and recognize the often superior quality, a growing number of women make these spas their go-to source for all of their cosmetics.
Part of the Daily Routine
Wherever ladies choose to get their makeup, the numbers show that the majority of them use various cosmetic enhancements at least some of the time. For instance, only 18.3 percent of women never use mascara; only 24.2 percent never use eyeshadow; only 23.6 percent never use eyeliner; and only 23.6 percent say they never wear lipstick. That means that at least three-quarters of the female adult population of the U.S. wears makeup every day, weekly or monthly. Whether they choose to purchase inexpensive products from their local drugstore or pricey designer selections from high-end retailers, the verdict is in when it comes to cosmetics. They are at least as popular as they were in Cleopatra’s and Jezebel’s time but with an almost limitless array of choices.
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