Thursday, July 4, 2013

Recessions, the Lipstick Effect and Neo-Grunge


Women buy more lipstick during recessions. Image Source: Wealth Wire.

The recession has affected human relationships and associated fashions. Business Insider and Wealth Wire report on the 'lipstick effect':
Many years ago the chairman of Estee Lauder, Leonard Lauder, claimed that during tough economic times, lipstick sales rose. He said that it was a countercyclical economic indicator. The claim came backed with minimal research, so recently a study was conducted. It turns out the “effect” proved that not only was Lauder accurate, but – according to the researchers— is “deeply rooted in women’s mating psychology.”
According to an article by Scientific American, women buy more luxury beauty products during recessions and work harder to attract a mate with more resources. Researchers claim that women do this, regardless of their own individual buying power. The article also argues that:
Recession cues increased women’s desire to buy high-end cosmetics and designer clothing, but not to buy budget-line beauty products, which were rated less effective at improving one’s appearance.
Similarly, Wealth Wire notes that men will tend to buy suits during a recession in order to get a job.

I am not sure whether this trend has lasted as the recession has dragged on. I see more disaffected, nihilistic rebellion in the face of all this striving desperation. Aren't women turning to cheaper cosmetics now? Or no cosmetics (see also here)?
Read more »