since ancient times women have been using jewelry(shiny things) on their body to look fancy, having high social status and attractive. maybe they were just looking for more places to put on their jewelry and the ear is one of the body parts that a jewelry might fit.
some men pierce their ears coz it has been in their culture to do so. i think indian boys pierce their ear since young, maybe its like having some protection from the gods, or maybe they could look like the gods or sth. for other guys, its just the metrosexual bullshit where a guy has to look like a girl to be a guy
the skirt. hmm... my theory is, men were the ones who went out and hunt, work, go to war etc, so they needed pant-like garments to ease their movements. notice the ancient chinese's costumes, the academic officials in the palace have longer robes and "skirts" than the generals and soldiers. i guess they just did not need to commit themselves to much physical movements while in the palace, and could also show off just how long and exquisite their garments are to other officials. the same applies to women, women then were bound to stay at home, do housework, be soft and gentle and move with ladylike elegance. only peasants and farmers had their women wearing pants like the guys. so it seems to me that the skirt has long been a symbol of a feminity and social standing of a lady.
lipstick? yeah, the contrasting colour theory may be correct. and since its red matching with the pale/ light colour of the skin, the emphasis would be given to the lips, maybe giving the lips a fuller look, like angelina jolie's, again, a symbol of a real seductive woman.