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THE BEGINNING OF MAKEUP
Cosmetics have been used in the art of making women and men beautiful for years.
The Gaul’s dyed their hair red, the Anglo-Saxon went pink with green, orange and blue locks while the Greeks opted for a more sophisticated look, sleeking their hair with gold and silver powders.
It was the Egyptians who first manufactured cosmetics on a very large scale and the preparation they used are surprisingly similar to today’s. The Egyptian women lined their eyes with dusty kohl and lids shaded with turquoise powder from green copper and lead ore. The lips and cheeks were rouged with powdered red clay while henna was used on their feet and toes. Cleopatra took baths in milk, which softened and conditioned her skin.
In the Victorian era makeup was frowned upon as being indicative of an immoral character and cosmetics had to be applied discretely. Queen Alexandra revived the popularity of painted faces and women were soon copying the exaggerated look of stars.
Women wore a chalky complexion, rouged cheeks, dark eyelids and bright bow-shaped lips. Lipstick was the most important item in any woman’s cosmetic bag and no one felt dressed without bright red lips until the 1960’s when lips paled to insignificance beneath hugely emphasized eyes. Black eyeliner, often three layers of it, were used to underline both the upper and lower lashes and marking the crease of the eyelid was supported by hard, brightly colored eye-shadows and enormously long false eyelashes. The lower lashes were often painted onto the skin with eyeliner. Lips were painted sugar pink or white.
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