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There is always someone else

Women are associated through a multitude of similarities.  We struggle for equal pay, give birth, suffer from hay fever, go on dates, work and use lipstick.

But no matter what – we are not alone.

 As women, we have many things in common. A glance toward our European neighbours reveals that:

We are many

We outnumber men – for every hundred men, we are five more women. Except on Iceland, where there are only 99 women per 100 men.

We live long lives

French and Spanish women live the longest in Europe at 83.8 years. Congratulations!

Closely followed by – and there is really not much difference – the Swiss at 83.7 years and then a whole bunch of Swedes, Finns, Icelandic, Dutch, and Austrians at about 82 years.

We work a lot

Most of us work both in the home and outside – a lot. In Iceland, 78.8% of all women between the ages 15 and 64, work at least one hour outside the home per week. The Danes are close on their heels at 71.6%, closely pursued by the Swedes at 70.5%. Italian and Greek women have the lowest rate at 45.5%.

We gain increasingly more power

Sweden has the largest proportion of women in parliament at 45%. At the top of the list we also find Denmark and Finland, with 38% and the Netherlands with 37%.

We marry

Yes, we do marry, but we put it off until later. Swedish women wait the longest, postponing their first marriage until the age of 32. But even in this respect we are rather similar; Norwegians, Irish, Icelandic and Danish women are all about 31 years old while the Dutch, Finns and French marry for the first time at 30.

By the way; in general, women in Europe are entitled to marry at the age of 18. In Turkey and the Ukraine however 17 is sufficient, and the legal age on the island of Malta is 16.

We give birth

We also put off having children. Ireland is the European country where women put of childbirth longest. The average age for first-time mothers is 30.6. Followed by the Dutch at 30.4 and Swedes at 30.3.

And, from a European perspective we have about 1.5 children per woman.

And we use lipstick

The Serbian women top the usage of lipstick-list. Top ten looks like this:

Serbia 84%
Greece 83%
Norway  77%
Ukraine  76%
Spain  75%
Bulgaria, Romania  73%
Croatia, Ireland (Rep.)  72%
Great Britain  70%
Northern Ireland  69%
Russia  67%

Spanish women use the most perfume, followed by the French and the Irish. In Norway, 64% of the women dye their hair compared with 29% of the German women. Foundation is used by 72% of the Irish women, 55% of the Spanish women and 28% of the Russian women.

What else do we know?

According to a survey conducted by Libresse, more than half of us avoid dating when we menstruate. And a TENA study in the UK shows we prefer briefs to boxers on men.

Regardless of what happens to us, chances are we are not alone. Statistics show that to be true. We differ a bit here and there. But in the total scheme of things, we share most things with at least someone else.

For instance, one out of four is affected by hayfever. That is the same figure for those that have experienced bladder weakness. If you are one of the four you know – you’re not alone. And there is help. So you can continue to live your life to the fullest.


Sources: Eurostat, Global TGI, UN stats, Europe at the Gates of Union.

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