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I own a ridiculous amount of lipgloss. Especially considering the fact that I almost never wear lipgloss. So I collected all my various lipgloss tubes, sticks, etc. and arranged them for the lovely photo that you see above.

I think WTF expresses the sentiment nicely. WTF was I thinking buying so much lipgloss? An even better question is why did I hold onto all these lipglosses and (I am not joking) haul them around the world with me? At least one of these lipglosses was purchased five years ago, when I was 20. I then brought it with me to Botswana, and then to Hong Kong, and then back to Canada, and then I took it with me when I moved to the UK. When I moved back to Canada I took it back with me to Calgary, and then to Vancouver, and finally I brought it to Toronto where I have finally disposed of it.

Why would a seemingly sane woman like myself bring an obscene number of lipglosses with her around the world, wearing them only occasionally (and far past their best-before dates), and never throw any of them out?

I think it is because there is a mythology around lipgloss. Lipgloss is incredibly girly and feminine. Lipgloss is the finishing touch on your perfect “kiss-me” lips and it is supposed to give you a “come hither” look that will drive the menfolk wild. When I think about putting on lipgloss I think about being in the bathroom with my girlfriends, gossiping and bonding. Unlike it’s more practical cousin, lip balm, lip gloss exists for the sole purpose of making the wearer “look pretty.”

I know that the evolutionary explanation for lipstick and lipgloss is that darkening and highlighting the lips mimics arousal. But my friends and I don’t stand around a mirror saying “alright ladies, it’s time to apply our lipgloss in order to mimic arousal and land ourselves a man!” I do think though that our lipgloss makes us feel sexier and more desirable, and that is how we want to feel. Even when we are in relationships, we want to feel desired, to turn heads, to know that “we’ve still got it.” Desirability is sold to us as an end in itself for women.

I think that I’ve acquired so much lipgloss because I bought into the fantasy that these pretty tubes of colour would make me into the sort of girl who turns heads, who is desired by men even when she just wants a fun night out with her friends.

So I’ve made the decision to throw out all but one of my lipglosses. If I don’t use that one in the next couple months I’ll throw it out too. I don’t need them, and I don’t need the fantasy that they represent.

Here is my much more practical lip product collection now:

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