Lucky lips... The triumphant march of colour compressed in a stick
Ne m’oubliez pas – Der Beginn der Verführung
It is now 133 years old – the “Stylo de Amour” lipstick or little sausage as it was dismissively called when it launched in the late 19th century. As early as 1870 parfumeur Pierre François Pascal Guerlain invented lip colour in the form of a stick giving it the promising name “Ne m’oubliez pas”, don’t forget me. And this is exactly what happened. The Frenchman lived up to his name and built the eternal reputation of this popular beauty utensil a few years later.
Extraordinary lipstick packaging by Barbor. Photo: www.mel-et-fet.com
In 1883 the day arrived: the créateur presented his invention to the audience at the World Expo in Amsterdam. The compacted dyestuff made of canola oil, deer suet and beeswax was still wrapped in tissue paper back then and was not only very expensive but also considered a sin.
Pricier than a family car: Guerlain’s diamond studded lipstick retails at US$ 62,000 for. Photo: hoppingo.com
Despite the lukewarm reception Guerlain stuck to his “love stick” placing it in a metal housing in 1910 for the first time. And he was well advised to do so because soon after lipsticks started their triumphant march as the Roaring Twenties set in. Then women of the world complemented their extravagant outfits with strikingly made-up lips.
The political and economic climate of a country is reflected in women’s mouths, says the son of cosmetics entrepreneur Estée Lauder. According to his “Lip Index”, women use lipstick more often in times of economic crisis.
My first Lipstick, Guerlain / Photo: lullabees.de
Appearances do count!
And this march has not stopped until today – at the beginning of the 21st century lipsticks are still must-haves in every woman’s handbag. Most manufacturers still cling to the handy twist and turn technology introduced in 1923. Cases in gold, silver, classic black, with embossing, built-in mirrors – even diamond-studded ones – have conquered the shelves of drugstores for decades now.
Eye-catching lipstick case with Swarovski crystals and pearls by MAC Cosmetics. Photo: glitterfix.com
Here not only the content counts. The packaging conveys a sense of glamour, luxury, hipness, youth or organic attitude – in brief, whatever users have a flair for. Over the years numerous new packaging versions have been added in little jars, with applicators or in the form of pencils for sharpening. But one thing is for sure: whatever the packaging – it impresses and makes a statement – just as the lip colours do.
Foto: JILL STUART / KOSÉ GLOBAL corporation
JILL STUART / KOSÉ GLOBAL corporation
Ne m’oubliez pas #102: The new edition now has the same name as the first stylo-shaped lipstick invented by Pierre François Pascal Guerlain back in 1870.
Violet, orange, pink ... and green? No – these are not lip cosmetics but lipstick-look marker pens.