Beauty buffs across the United States on Monday will try new shades of lipstick or don old favorites for National Lipstick Day.
The annual celebration honors one of the beauty industry’s oldest and most beloved cosmetic products.
Here’s everything you need to know about lipstick and the special day — including where to score free products.
Where does lipstick come from?
The practice of painting lips dates back thousands of years.
Some of the first known people to do so lived in Mesopotamia near the Sumerian city of Ur, according to the book “Read My Lips: A Cultural History of Lipstick.” That’s roughly around present-day southern Iraq. There, Queen Schub-ad made a paste from white lead and crushed red rocks to color her lips.
From there, the lip-painting trend spread through the region and across the world. It made its way to the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. It survived the Middle Ages and Italian Renaissance and more.
Ultimately, it was Western European settlers that brought lipstick to American shores.
To this day, lipstick is still one of the most recognizable makeup products in the world.
Honestly, homegirl Schub-ad was way ahead of her time.
How has lipstick changed over the years?
Lipstick may have started as crushed red rocks, but it’s changed a lot since then.
A modern tube of lipstick contains lots of ingredients intended to improve shade, taste, scent and performance. Some also feature sun protection, moisturizing and waterproof properties.
And “lipstick” doesn’t just refer to tubes of clay-like material anymore. Now, we have everything from liquid lipstick that dries on matte to lip stains meant to last all day.
Of course, today’s lipstick also comes in more shades than ever before — from classic red to even blue and black.
Did you know lipstick was once controversial?
Lipstick wasn’t always considered a beauty enhancing product. It was sometimes seen as scandalous.
Starting in the Middle Ages, some societies began to look down on women who wore lipstick. In sixth-century Spain, for example, it was associated with prostitutes, according to “Read My Lips: A Cultural History of Lipstick.”
By the 17th century, clergy and ethicists began scrutinizing the practice of painting lips, saying that it altered God’s design. Some even claimed it was worn by satanists trying to entice men.
Societies and cultures continued to have a love-hate relationship with lipstick well into the 20th century. Sometimes it was considered vulgar, other times beautiful and even an expectation.
Still, women who loved the look held their ground and the use of lipstick persisted.
So, what’s National Lipstick Day all about?
Fashionistas, beauty bloggers, influencers and cosmetic companies began celebrating National Lipstick Day about a decade ago. However, no one really knows where it comes from.
It’s not a legit holiday. But it’s fun, nonetheless.
Most people seem to agree the best way to celebrate is to buy a new shade of lipstick or wear an old favorite. Oh, and make sure you leave sexy lipstick imprints everywhere.
Wait, did you say something about free lipstick?
Sure did! MAC Cosmetics is giving away free full-size lipstick with any $25 purchase on July 27-29.