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Return of red: The 5 best-selling lipsticks of the year

Kiss the recession goodbye?After nearly a decade of declining sales, lipstick sales jumped 11 percent – garnering $92.1 million from January 2010 to April 2011, according to a new report by market research company NPD Group, Inc. And this past year’s top earners included luxury brands like Chanel, Lancome and Estee Lauder:1.
MAC lipstick stole the no. 1 spot.
MAC lipstick stole the no. 1 spot.MAC

Kiss the recession goodbye?

After nearly a decade of declining sales, lipstick sales jumped 11 percent – garnering $92.1 million from January 2010 to April 2011, according to a new report by market research company NPD Group, Inc. And this past year’s top earners included luxury brands like Chanel, Lancome and Estee Lauder:

1. MAC Lipstick

2. Lancome L’Absolu Rouge

3. Clinique Long Last Soft Shine Lipstick

4. Lauder Pure Color Lipstick New

5. Chanel Rouge Coco Shine

Which shades landed in cosmetic bags? "We saw an increase in women using colors in the red and berry families," said industry analyst Karen Grant from the NDP Group Inc. "Followed after that are the pink and corals, then the browns."

But pink and neutral tones still earned top-selling spots: MAC's No. 1 earner was the beige-toned Viva Glam Gaga (yes, inspired by Lady Gaga). The brand's cotton candy-colored Nicki Minaj shade, Pink Friday, followed.

As for preferences, the more mature ladies stuck to lipstick, whereas younger folks used lip gloss. For makeup users age 18+, 61 percent bought lipstick, with the percentage increasing with age. In fact, only 1 out of 4 women ages 18-24 even used lipstick at all, versus 8 out of 10 older women (65 and up). "That whole generation grew up on lip gloss," said Grant, though there was an increase in teens graduating to lipstick, specifically to rich and retro colors.

"As the fashion industry increasingly features bold as well as understated lip statements on the runway and in advertisements, lip color appears to be getting its groove back."

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