Tough times mean more make-up

10:00 Mon Jul 9 2012
Women buy beauty products during a recession
Image: Thinkstock

Women opt to buy more beauty products, not less, during a recession, according to the latest study from Texas Christian University.

The research, to be published in the Journal of Personality and Social Pschology, found that women reported an increased desire to buy expensive cosmetic products and designer clothing when primed with news of the economic recession.

According to study author Sarah E Hill, this “lipstick effect” is deeply rooted in women’s mating psychology, with its emphasis on physical appearance.

The study also found an increased preference for prosperous partners. "Women of both higher and lower economic status expressed an increased desire to buy luxury beauty products when primed with recession cues," Hill said.

"This suggests that an uncertain economic climate leads women to heighten mate attraction effort irrespective of their own resource need," she added.

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