Now my lipstick can poison me

As anyone who knows me in the remotest way knows, I will only be seen in public without my reliable slash of lipstick in two cases, the first if I have been forced to leave home in the event of a raging fire, or the second, if I am dead. Change the second one, I might still ask the mortuary attendants to daub on some Fawn Fatale on them lips before they put me up for display. No point looking more ghoulish than I already do look.  As I’ve mentioned many times before, the natural colour of them lips is a dirty pale colourless non colour that would have a Goth modelling herself on a corpse ecstatic but only provokes concerned queries on my health from anyone who sees me divested of lipstick. Hell, I’ve been known to slick some lipstick on even before being catherised and wheeled into operating theatres. And ensuring it coordinated with the nail polish.

So when news reports tell me that the percentage on lead in the lipstick I use is beyond permissible limits and can make me sick and dead, I sigh deeply. And sadly. And what is worse, the cheaper brands (which one always avoids like the plague because one assumes that the cheaper ones will have ingredients which are untested on anything human or animal and are guaranteed to scorch your skin off, causing an allergic reaction that will then need me to take my discoloured skin to a dermatologist, are better than them fancy ones that I need to pluck my teeth out in order to sell if I want to buy them, my faith in humanity and mankind is shaken to the core.

What does a girl do now if she wants to have her lips look alluring and seductive and appealing, and have the man in her life hang onto every word that comes out of her mouth? Natural lip colours? Natural brands? or do we go back to the ancients and study their methods of colouring lips, recreating them in our kitchens and slathering them on?

Or should one bring the Ghost that Walks look into vogue? Nah, I’m sticking to my lippers. At last count I had two big boxes full of lipsticks, given that I pick up one new lipstick whenever the mood is in a deep dark funk. I have the blood reds, the chocolates, the berries, the mochas, the caramels, the lattes and the entire directory of food inspired names given to make us hapless women hope that one slathering of said colour would make us look dropped straight down from heaven, albeit sans the hoorpari costume. As for lead poisoning, you think I have a case to slap the makers of said lipsticks with a multimillion dollar suit? Given I’ve been using them lipsticks since I was 16, and am still alive and kicking and with no symptoms yet, except of course, mild dementia?


About Kiran Manral

Kiran Manral published her first book, The Reluctant Detective in 2011. Since then, she has published eight books across genres till date. Her books include romance and chicklit with Once Upon A Crush (2014), All Aboard (2015), Saving Maya (2017); horror with The Face at the Window (2016) and nonfiction with Karmic Kids (2015), A Boy’s Guide to Growing Up (2016) and True Love Stories (2017). Her short stories have been published on Juggernaut, in magazines like Verve and Cosmopolitan, and have been part of anthologies like Chicken Soup for the Soul, Have a Safe Journey (2017) and Boo (2017). Her articles and columns have appeared in the Times of India, Tehelka, DNA, Yowoto, Shethepeople, New Woman, Femina, Verve, Elle, Cosmopolitan, Conde Nast Traveller, DB Post, The Telegraph, the Asian Age, iDiva, TheDailyO and more. She was shortlisted for the Femina Women Awards 2017 for Literary Contribution. She is a TEDx speaker and a mentor with Vital Voices Global Mentoring Walk 2017.
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7 Responses to Now my lipstick can poison me

  1. Rani says:

    that was a funny read!



  2. Phoenixritu says:

    I dont wear makeup unless its someone’s shaadi or something. Then the Parlour girls have a field day on me and I end up not recognizing myself. But these doomsday things have been carried a bit far. No one died of lipstick! Ever

    Yup. That gives me hope.


  3. Gigi says:

    Kiran – glad you started using lipsticks only at 16 and not under 5. There is a database you can browse for all cosmetics. Not sure if all brands are covered. Pick the one with lower hazard score.

    Thanks for this. Will check out.


  4. divya says:

    dementia is a sign of lead poisoning. 😉

    I told you. I’m so dead.


  5. aabha says:

    i’ve never used lipsticks just a dab of Vaseline on my lips. but after i got married, everyone was having a cow about my lack of makeup, so my mum in law took me shopping and we bought the whole store in one go. what a waste. i never use them except for these lovely revlon super lustrous glosses. the actual sticks are too cakey for my taste.

    Alas and alack


  6. moi says:

    Shahnaz Hussain claims that her products are made of herbal and natural things..if that’s correct then she got different colors of lipstick too so you could buy Shahnaz Hussain lipsticks 🙂


  7. bird's eye view says:

    I’m with you on the buying lipstick on all occasions – have a vast collection and not ready to chuck them!

    And now I need more…


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