Ladies, have you bought a new lipstick lately? How about nail polish? When money is tight – and the economy is weak – people cut back on big-ticket nonessentials and start spending their money on little luxuries, like lipstick. Economists call “the lipstick index,” and actually track lipstick sales as a way to predict what’s happening with the economy.

So what does the lipstick index say now? It seems there will be more tough times ahead. Lipstick sales are up 14 percent this year so far – and nail polish sales are up 54 percent! Nail polish is a new addition to the economic forecast – but just as accurate.

So although that’s not great news overall – it’s good news for the beauty industry! Estee Lauder just recorded its best North American sales in a decade. So even if we head into a double-dip recession – we’ll look fabulous doing it!

Just something to think about the next time you pick up a new lipstick.