Does the mean woman swallow 6 pounds that lipstick throughout her lifetime?

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Claim: The median woman swallows six pounds the lipstick during her lifetime.



I heard ladies eat an not suitable amount of lipstick during their lifetimes. So ns looked it increase on the Internet, and also post after article lists it in ~ 6 lbs per lifetime.

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Origins: The id that women will certainly swallow some astonishingly large amount of lipstick over the span of their lives has been kicking about for more than a decade. In that time, we’ve viewed it repetitive with miscellaneous poundages given, together the following list (gleaned from various news articles) demonstrates:

In 1998 The Ottawa citizens said, “According come one report in Glamour magazine, the average woman consumes 4 to nine pounds that lipstick in she lifetime.”

In 2001 London’s The express claimed, “The mean woman swallows 5.65 lbs. That lipstick in a lifetime.”

In 2002 Denver’s Rocky mountain News reported, “Women inadvertently – but harmlessly – eat around four pounds that lipstick in your lifetime,” citing Glamour magazine as its source.

In 2002, The sunlight announced, “The median woman swallows 3lb of lipstick throughout her life, say researchers in Australia.”

In 2002, ireland News said the typical woman, “Swallows four pounds the lipstick in a lifetime.”

In 2002 Melbourne, Australia’s Sunday Herald Sun claimed of lipstick, “The median woman swallows around 4.5kg <10 lbs.> in a lifetime.”

In 2005 Charlottetown, PEI’s The Guardian asserted, “The mean woman eats 5 pounds that lipstick every lifetime.”

Notice that also when the insurance claim is authoritatively repeated as revealed fact, yes sir no agreement on just exactly how much lip enhancer the “average” mrs ingests. Follow to the various ways we’ve heard the rumor, the number varies between 3 and 10 pounds.

While it’s a neat-sounding statistic, usual sense rules it out. This is why:

Although over there is some variance through brand, the mean amount of usable lipstick in a typical (not skinny, i.e. Revlon Colorstay) tube quantities to 3 grams. (We shown this by decapitating then weighing the usable portion of a Maybelline color Sensational and a Revlon supervisor Lustrous — they both came out to 3 grams.)

There are thus 151.2 tube of lipstick to the pound. For any kind of flavor the this factlet around ingested lipstick to be


true, the “average” woman would have to swallow the contents of many, many hundreds of sticks of lip colorant in she life (anywhere in between 454 and 1,512 tubes, if we create the rumor’s parameters at 3 and 10 pounds).

As to how numerous applications there are in a tube of lip goo, us sacrificed another Revlon supervisor Lustrous to the cause of science and determined its 3 usable grams of cosmetic produces 410 coatings even when used with a hefty hand. (While there will certainly be an ext applications from thick lipsticks, and fewer indigenous creamier concoctions, because that the function of this review we’ll stick with the 410 figure we arrived at by running a relatively average lipstick under to its nub.) Thus, those 454 to 1,512 tubes converts to 186,140 to 619,920 really applications.

Assuming 55 years of everyday lipstick use (age 15 to 70), 186,140 come 619,920 applications equates to 9 to 31 lip layerings every day. Each day. Every day. Also when the median woman is top top vacation, or is under the weather many thanks to the flu, or is spending she days housebound chasing after a rambunctious two-year-old. Everything else is going on in she life, she’s going to take 9 come 31 division from the a day to slather on new lipstick.

While 9 to 31 applications a day could not however sound totally outlandish, that’s prior to we think about the kicker: because that this stat come work, the typical woman would need to swallow all the lipstick she applied in those 9 come 31 everyday lip colorings. Which method none of the product end up on the pickled in salt of a coffee cup, or is blotted off automatically following application, or kissed away by amorous swains, let alone wash off prior to bedtime when cautious women remove all your makeup. All of it would finish up in she tummy; no one would stay on her lips.

Another method of appreciating the ridiculousness of the claim variously declared as 3 to 10 pounds of swallowed lip product across a woman’s cosmetic use life time (which, together above, we’ll assume is 55 years), is that translates to

454 to 1,512 tube of lipstick, which subsequently translates come 8 to 27 pipe of lip goo every year per median woman. And, those aren’t just purchased tubes, but used best down to their nubs tubes, with the above caveat about all the the cosmetics so expended having to finish up ingested quite than any type of of that disposed in any other way.

Average females don’t to buy 8 to 27 tube of lipstick each year, every year. The the lipsticks they perform buy, they don’t use appropriate down to the last possible swipe every vestige that every tube. Most any kind of gal you question will recognize to possessing a handful of lipsticks housed in a drawer somewhere that she fancied at the moment of purchase yet now doesn’t use, or even cop come throwing out nearly full tube whose shade or texture she no much longer cared for. That the lipsticks they execute regularly apply, not all of them finish up totally expended, in that also favorite tube of lipstick get lost, or stepped on, or sent out through the to wash in the pocket of a pair the jeans.

In various other words, for any type of flavor that this “pounds that ingested lipstick” rumor to work, the average woman would need to purchase a far greater variety of lipsticks than the 8 come 27 tube a year we’ve already settled she’d need to go through just to meet the check statistic.

In 1990, the nationwide Health and Medical research Council in Canberra, Australia, check the typical woman could expect come swallow between 500 and 1,500 grams the lipstick in her life time if she to be a modest but regular user. While this numbers space a bit an ext plausible, they still remain external the boundaries of usual sense. Making use of the 3 usable grams per pipe figure, that amounts to 167 to 500 tube of lipstick, which would require a yearly “used appropriate down come the nub” lipstick acquisition of 3 come 9 tubes, every vestige of i m sorry would have to be ingested by the “modest but regular user,” v nary a smidgen wiped, kissed, or blotted off.

The nationwide Health and Medical study Council conclusion around how much lipstick females swallow was advanced in agenda papers discussing the need for boosted regulation the cosmetics and also other health and beauty aids. The should therefore be looked in ~ a little bit askance.

As come what is in reality in lipstick (swallowed or otherwise), the cosmetic quantities to waxes, oils and fats, emollients, and pigments. The rumor that this beautifier contains huge amounts of command is false.

Barbara “lipstick chronicles” Mikkelson

Last updated: 14 might 2010



Brannigan. “Let’s listen It because that the Girls.” irish News. 19 June 2002 (pp.18, 27).

Groskop, Viv. “Don’t Worry, High Heels Won’t bring Us Down.” The express On Sunday. 11 march 2001.

McCormack, Louisa. “Kiss and also Makeup.” The Guardian. 16 July 2005 (p. C3).

Pickett, Debra. “Colorful economic Indicator Smacks that Luxury, Escape.” Chicago Sun-Times. 27 November 2001 (p. 6).

Spicer, Emily. “Kiss and Tell ; Luscious Lipstick Evokes Sensuality, Memories.” san Antonio Express-News. 26 December 2002 (p. D12).

Herald Sun. “Kiss and also Tell Surprise.” 8 November 1990.

The Ottawa Citizen. “WhoWhatWhenWhereWhyHow.” 1 November 1998 (p. D14).

Rocky mountain News. “Dress Code.” 30 may 2002 (p. D3).

The Sun. “Lip Loss.” 27 December 2002.

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Sunday Herald Sun. “Danger: Lipstick can Be Lethal.” 5 might 2002 (News, p. 11).