Make-up Through The Ages
For many thousands of years cosmetics have been used to alter the appearance of both men and women.
For many thousands of years cosmetics have been used to alter the appearance of both men and women. The ancient Egyptians were probably one of the first to use mineral-make-up to colour their faces. The Greeks and Romans also liked to paint their faces for cosmetic reasons. Although early male face painting was more to do with going into battle than covering their spots.
Up until the nineteenth century faces were whitened using some quite dangerous products such as carbonate, hydroxide, and lead oxide. These products tended to accumulate in the body and often caused serious health issues and even death.
The 20th century was the era when the largest growth in the industry occurred, due to an increase in the sale of magazines and public information through the media , film and later television., also more women were going out to work and therefore had more disposable income.
Every era tends to have a specific look regarding what is considered beautiful, the tone is usually set by the stars of film, tv and the general media….the public follow the tends set by others and marketing and availability plays a large roll in the final look of todays woman.
One of the oldest companies is Avon which was first established in 1886 by the 28-year-old David McConnell who sold books door-to-door and gave out perfume to help with the sales. His perfume eventually became more popular than his books, the company continues to expand from its origins of selling door –to-door with the familiar “Avon calling”.
Later arrivals on the cosmetics scene were Almay in 1931 which has always used hypoallergenic ingredients in an era when make-up was usually heavy and thick with strong chemicals. The name is derived from the names of the founders Alfred and Fanny May. Estee Lauder began in 1946 with a small product line mostly based on skin care and cleansing. Lancome began in the 1930s with a perfume based product range which expanded to general make-up in the 1960s after joining l’Oreal and can be often seen on the red carpet even today.
The 1960s saw the arrival of Mary Kay following along the lines of Avon with a direct home sales approach .Clinique started in 1968 when people were starting to realise that different skin types need different products. They try to customise their products to individual needs.
The 1970s were when people became more aware of using more natural products and the Body Shop came along to fill the gap, using products researched from around the world and using re-fillable bottles. The first The Body Shop store opened in March 1976 in Brighton, England
These days the array of products is so confusing to the consumer, if a lady has a particular feature she wants to enhance there is always some company ready to tell them their product is the best. Eyes are often the focus of a ladies make-up routine and false eye-lashes have become a common addition to her make-up bag, but application has to be learnt well to pull off a stunning look rather than looking like a panda.
While creating a motion picture in 1916 the first false eye-lashes were supposedly made by D W Griffiths, since this time they have been popularised by the likes of Twiggy, Dusty Springfield and Liza Minnelli, although today people are going for a more natural look.