Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The Lipstick Situation

I love lipstick. I really love lipstick. I consume a lot of it and always did, since the first Revlon lipstick I bought with my own money all those decades ago. Lipsticks are among the few products I actually use up (I can't remember the last time I hit pan on an eye shadow, but I have reached the bottom of two lipsticks, an Edward Bess and a Guerlain Rouge Automatique, within the last month). Still, you and I know that if I weren't a blogger I wouldn't have five full drawers of lip products at my disposal.

It's got to a ridiculous point. The issue was the red lipstick drawer. I adore my red lipsticks, but having to rummage and choose among so many every time I want to go glam, has stopped being fun. I want to wear all of them. I want to use them up. But I need to do it if not one by one, then five by five. Or ten by ten. So I opened the drawers and choose a handful of lipsticks from each color, texture, and finish category. Glossy red, matte red, dusty rose, luscious berry...  everything else was packed more or less by color and put away  right next to the storage bins that hold my perfume backups. I don't buy backups for makeup or skincare, but I am going to start treating the excess as backup. Finishing one plum lipstick will mean fishing out another plum lipstick from the vault to replace it.

It's not a perfect solution, of course, and it's not that I'm going to stop buying lipsticks or accept press samples for review, but I'm going to try and keep the number in the immediate rotation more manageable, and having one drawer of lipsticks and one for glosses and balms makes a lot more sense. For now.


  1. I tend to work in a similar although less strict/organized way, but I think it's a great system to "shop your stash" and personally, I'm in the same situation. I love reviewing products but at the end of the day I end up owning way too much. I am learning to pass on a lot of products as well to my family so that does help.

  2. A woman after my own heart, lipsticks, balms, stains, etc etc make me smile so big and that is my biggest product (well ok skincare too) stash! Great idea!

  3. Oh my! What a lipstick stash! I guess that's the life of a beauty blogger :-) Many a woman would love to have your problem: all those gorgeous shades from which to choose. I adore creamy smooth lipstick but because I routinely toss lipstick at the 18 month mark, I never have more than a dozen lipsticks on hand. It's also very rare that I reach the end of a bullet because I'm always changing my lipstick throughout the day and evening. I have; however, repurchased favorite colors because I've tossed theIr predessors--mostly Edward Bess, Guerlain, and Clé de Peau. I'm curious as to which EB and Guerlain you wore to a nubbin. Do tell!

  4. I'm not a blogger, yet this summer I found myself in a similar (if slightly scaled-down--only 4 drawers of lipsticks) situation. And I kinda did what you've done. I forced myself to pick about 10-15 lipsticks that I would pick from (I recently switched out my summer selections for a more fall/winter group). It's working pretty well. I do find myself rummaging in my lipstick storage bins, but that's okay. And like Zoe Danielle said, it's fun to "shop your stash." I get all excited about seeing old favorites when I haven't worn them in a while. Plus, it feels organized, which feels virtuous, which is humorously ironic when faced with such excess! Since I'm not even a blogger, I really have no excuse except, well, lipstick gluttony. Love my lippies.

  5. Lipsticks currently occupy two drawers of my Ikea Helmer, plus a small box for lipglosses and liquid lipsticks in taller tubes that don't fit in. Lipstick is something I rarely go without, and I absolutely love it... so it's definitely a bit of an addiction!

  6. Hello Gaia,
    You and I are in the same boat; the red lipstick drawer "runneth over." I keep 10 lip products at my makeup station and the rest are stored neatly in my Ikea Alex Drawers in my closet. I find the ones I choose to keep near and dear to me are the ones I love the most. The rest are more or less kept for comparison swatch purposes. Oddly enough, I have an issue with their boxes..I just can't seem to throw them away. Regardless, I will never stop buying lipsticks..that would be sacrilege.

  7. I recognise the situation too. If you have many options you should also have an endless amount of time on your hands to choose and search.
    What lipstick, what eyeliner, dress, shoes,...
    In the end it's a strange thing to complain about isn't it ? We're so priviliged.
    But again it comes down to organizing otherwise you'll just pick the first thing you can find. I can allready see my clients faces when I say ; "Well, I'm very sorry I'm late, but I couldn't find my "Intoxicating Rose" lipstick...;))


  8. Hi Gaia, you'll probably laugh at me, but when I get to 25 lipsticks - it becomes a problem...Being a minimalist by nature (though reading beauty blogs and loving make up I probably own more than an average person here) I really have a problem with things that are not in use. I solve it by finding someone else that will enjoy better than me with a particular item.
    My opinion about things and how they suit me also changes very fast, so, apart from absolute basics like black eyeliner I never stock :).

  9. Please keep us readers posted if this system works for you! I seem unable to commit to a mere 3/4 shades at one time :0 it's my security blanket I think to have half a dozen lippies in my bag at any given moment!
    I've collected Chanel Lippies for well over 30 years, and you can add that to my Mothers incredible collection dating back to the 50's. Never worry about having too much- if the mortgage is paid and there's food on the table- continue to collect!

  10. Hi, Gaia. Fun system! I hope it helps you get through your collection mor efficiently. Not to add to the problem, but I must ask, have you ever tried Red Apple Lipsticks? They are a company based in Texas, owned by husband and wife team Jay and Andrea Harper. They are create gluten-free, parablen-free lipsticks that go way beyond just satisfying a need for those who are looking for alternative products. They are simply the best lipsticks and glosses I have ever used. And their lip balm heals chapped lips amazingly fast! Plus, they have awesome and fun names like "Honey Badger" and "Hot Mess." I've met Jay and Andrea, and they are simply delightful people.


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