Women spend more money on beauty products when the economy is down

by - July 22, 2016

Beauty products are awesome but can have such power over us with their claims to change the way we look and, sometimes, feel because of that.

The "Lipstick Effect" is proof.

According to research, the “lipstick effect”, is a trend in which we as women spend more money on beauty products during recession than in times of economic prosperity.

So instead of buying the latest Louis Vuitton bag, women will invest in a red lipstick that makes them feel just as sexy. The research also found that the "lipstick effect" applies specifically to products that enhance beauty, even when those products are more expensive.

Although the 'lipstick effect' theoretically relates to all cosmetics, or anything that enhances female attractiveness, lipstick itself might be particularly 'primal', unique in its ability to immediately and dramatically transform appearance.

And with South Africa’s weak growth problems, women are more likely than ever to follow this trend.

According to research group EuroMonitor, the 'lipstick effect' is still going strong today, thriving on the back of consumers’ desire to splash out on small things so as to make life “worth living”.

Women often cheer themselves up during tough times by 'pampering' with a treat, and one of the cheapest ways remains buying lipstick. Applying it, smiling at the mirror, sends women away into a harsher world with a spring in their step.

And the financial results of big beauty groups also support the theory.

Sales figures from one of the world's largest cosmetics companies, L'Oreal, revealed that during 2008, a year when the rest of the economy suffered record declines in sales, the cosmetics leviathan experienced sales growth of 5.3%.


How women shop today is affected by so many external factors and the dominant social media messaging  is a big factor.

The rise of beauty bloggers is certainly changing the way marketers are reaching out to their customers.

Today, many women use a quick search on their favourite blogs for reviews and blog posts about any product they're are thinking of buying.

Not surprisingly, the cosmetics industry knows how women can fall for false promises and they readily pander to their misguided hopes.

Revlon has tapped on the market by employing radio host and media personality, Bonang Matheba and Clinique has hired actress, Jessica Nkosi, to be their face. And there are many celebs here at home who are being used by brands to endorse their products.

And with the rise of brand ambassadors and beauty bloggers, that means that you are constantly bombarded with advertising messages on the "best" beauty products.

You’ve been exposed to advertisements your whole life, so by now you know better than to believe everything they tell you. We’re all smart, competent women, so don’t let anyone take advantage of you!

I encourage you not to fall for this trap. We are in a cycle... or is it a glitch... I don't know anymore. Anyways, like wise people will tell you, this too shall pass. But don't be dragged down with it.

I know a lot of us adore beauty products, and buying things is definitely a lot of fun, but we can all agree that that no one should be going into debt buying lipsticks.

So be careful with your money.  Rather than spend half of your paycheck on beauty brands, I  suggest you pay off that debt and build up that emergency fund. We are heading for better days, remember... look the future is bright! 😎

Remember, you can have great skin and a beautifully made-up face without breaking your bank account.

So what is the one beauty item you would never go without and why?

You May Also Like