Makeup History

 

Makeup Hazel Dawn
Ziegfeld Follies actress Hazel Dawn in 1914
via Wikimedia Commons

I have read a couple of interesting articles about makeup in history in the last couple of days and thought you might enjoy them. The first is by Erin Blakemore on How Makeup went Mainstream and she discusses the way actresses were used to market makeup in the early 20th century. Testimonials from actresses and makeup artists were used to convince, non-actresses that we needed the stuff to look our best. I love the irony of creating a “natural look.” 🙂

The second is weirder, 100 years of banned beauty products. Yep, click the link to see hair removers that can kill you, hair dyes that blind, all kinds of crazy stuff, and these are recent, not even counting the ones you already knew about like the Elizabethan’s white lead makeup, the Victorian’s favorite arsenic face cream, or the ancient Egyptian penchant for mixing sacred crocodile dung in kohl eye makeup. Here is a bonus link: In the realm of “more dangerous than crocodile dung,” the FDA issued a periodic statement to avoid kohl, kajal, and al kahl in eye makeup because they have been found to consist of salts of heavy metals, such as antimony and lead, leading to lead poisoning in children, they are probably not so good for your eyes either.

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