Makeup has been around ever since an early ancestor fell out of the trees and decided clay streaks would be “in” that season. Or as early as 3,000 BCE, if you’re fussy about dates.

Throughout history, makeup was a signifier of wealth and status. For example, early aristocrats powdered their faces so their paleness would distinguish them from their sun-weathered, field-working subjects. Predictably, once the poor folk got herded from the fields into the factories, sun tanning became de rigueur.

Wearing makeup is also sexual. According to the book Sexual Secrets: The Alchemy of Ecstasy, “cosmetics and ornaments have played a major part in sexual ritual.”

As part of ancient Tantric practices, “the application of coloured cosmetics to various body parts stimulated and concentrates energy there.”

In all cultures, the book adds, cosmetics help make the beautiful look exquisite and the ordinary special.

Makeup has also been used historically to indicate sexual availability. In ancient Rome, for example, prostitutes painted their mouths red to indicate that oral sex was on their “will-do” list.

And, in the book The Secrets of Sexual Body Language it states that “makeup mimics the changes that take place in your body when you become sexually aroused. When you’re excited, your pupils enlarge — making your eyes look darker and bigger — your cheeks flush and the lips swell and darken.”

Perfume’s all about sex, too. When we have sex, the body sweats and releases a musky odour. That’s why most perfumes are derived from animal scents. You might say it brings out the beast in us. The women of ancient Egypt and Rome knew this.

“Perfume was used in their hair and on their clothing and furnishings, as well as in baths,” the Body Language book tells us. Even as far back as 4,000 BCE, wealthy women were using perfumed oils to anoint their bodies.

And jewellery? Next time you’re having sex, watch your partner’s earlobes swell. In some parts of Africa, long earlobes are seen as the ultimate standard of beauty, and a girl’s earlobes are punctured and stretched systematically to increase desirability.

Back in mid-17th-century Europe, those funny neck ruffles were worn to emphasize a woman’s neck. Apparently, some of these collars were so large, it made it almost impossible for her to eat.

It’s amazing the lengths we’ll go to get some action.