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Can you get herpes or diseases from trying lipstick on in a store?

By Anonymous November 10, 2017 - 2:09pm
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I just came back from the mall where there was a sale at a makeup store, and I tried on a few lipstick colours (maybe 5?) . The attendant took each lipstick with a napkin and went away to 'sanitize' it, but admittedly I didn't see exactly what she did, like if she used a spray or just wiped it with the napkin.
I only thought afterwards that I could possibly get herpes or some disease from it, as i had applied it directly to my mouth. It was stupid, I know. Only one did I use a Q-tip from the store, because i saw the Q-tips at the last minute.

I asked my roommate who is an infectologist and when I asked her, she gave me a funny look, saying that I shouldn't have done it but that the chances of picking up something would be small.

However I'm really worried, especially because my lips are chapped due to cold weather. I've been applying chapstick and vaseline but the skin is split.

Is it possible to get herpes from what I did?? I feel so stupid for risking myself with lipstick.

Add a Comment3 Comments

it was me who asked the question, just before making an account.
How high is the risk? should i get tested or look out for something? i'm very worried now. i don't want to have contracted it and possibly spread it to my boyfriend

November 10, 2017 - 6:45pm
Guide (reply to emmabim92)


You don't know that you caught anything, so try to relax. Not everyone that tries on a lipstick gets herpes, but the risk is there. In the future, just don't try lipsticks on or share lip products with anyone.


November 10, 2017 - 7:04pm

Hello. Thank you for posting.

Cold sores and fever blisters are caused by herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1). This virus is passed from person to person by saliva (either directly or by drinking from the same glass or cup, for example) or by skin contact. Cold sores usually appear as clusters of tiny blisters on the lip.

So, Yes, you can, in fact, contract the herpes simplex virus from a lipstick that's been infected by it. Or sharing a lipstick with someone who may have it. All beauty companies should be mindful of training their employees to use disposable tubes or swabs to apply lipstick to their customers. And as consumers, we should also be looking out for ourselves. As a rule, I rarely try on lip products in a store unless it's a one-time disposable sample.


November 10, 2017 - 4:44pm
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