I am one who rarely goes out of the house without makeup. I always like to look my best whenever I go shopping, to work, or out on the town. In fact, I have worn makeup for fifty some odd years now. Why do I still go through the same routine every morning?
I admire those people who look beautiful without makeup, or who feel fine going out without a stitch of lip gloss or mascara. I'm not one of them! So, why do some of us spend money and our time to don eyeliner and other cosmetics. Let's take a look at it, shall we?
History of Makeup
Upon investigation, I found that makeup has been around many centuries.
The earliest trace was found in Egypt in their tombs. Egyptian men and women would mix together ointments to put on their face supposedly to keep their skin from drying out from the hot dry climate. Then they outlined their eyes with kohl (made of soot or antimony) and later added green or gray eye shadow. They used carbon, black oxide and other substances (often toxic) to produce their makeup. Ochre was also used to color cheeks and henna for their nails, palms and hair.
Some claim that the Egyptians wore makeup because they believed that their appearance was somehow related to their spirituality. The better you looked, the more spiritual you were! If only it were that easy! Some religions today claim that makeup makes you look more worldly - just the opposite of spiritual. Mascara comes from the word masquerade, so whose story is right? The jury is out.
Romans also got their female slaves called Cosmetae to create makeup for them, some using mercury, burned almonds, copper, and lead. They used makeup more as a status symbol.
Women of the Far East utilized many more materials in their makeup, including beeswax, egg, gum arabic, and gelatin. Geisha girls used rice powder on their face and lipstick that was made of safflower petals for rouge and lipstick.
Persia or Middle East
Makeup was considered part of the Medicine of Beauty . Persian women used henna to beautify their hair and bodies. Persian makeup is more artistic and exotic.
European women liked the pearl complexion, and they would use plaster chalk powder, hydroxide, carbon and white lead. This distinguished the rich from the common people. However, some women were poisoned and died from this practice using toxic materials. All in the name of beauty - or is it vanity?
France was the leader in developing makeup in Europe. They used natural products like fruits, tree bark, flowers and roots. The products became more affordable and even poor women started using makeup. Makeup then became a symbol of health and beauty rather than wealth.
Soon beauty salons cropped up and women would take time out to get their makeup done.
Native Americans used makeup, but usually only for battle. In the 1900s, with the advent of television and movies, cosmetics became wildly popular. Instead of looking pale, American women wanted to look more tan and wore different shades of lipsticks and eye shadow. They preferred a more refined and sensual look.
The Big Players in Cosmetics
Well, that was a very quick history of makeup. I have probably spent a fortune on makeup during my life. Cosmetics is a big money maker. Now you can buy mascara, eye shadow, eye liner, cleansers, toners, moisturizers, nail polish, lotions, lipsticks, hair dyes, and so much more. Makeup is available in umteen shades. They are available down the street, in the malls and online.
The top cosmetic companies are (not in any particular order) as it changes:
- L'Oreal (includes Maybelline and 19 other brands)
- Estée Lauder (includes Bobby Brown and M.A.C. Cosmetics)
- Elizabeth Arden
- Mary Kay Cosmetics
- Proctor and Gamble
Link to Top Global Beauty Brands
So, ladies and gentlemen....there it is. For now I will continue to wear makeup. I told my daughter when I die, I want her to apply my makeup. Vanity up to ...... and including the end!
I guess if I had never started wearing makeup, I would be fine. But, when I grew up, it was the in thing, and I just feel better wearing it than not. I am not trying to look religious, nor am I trying to look like a harlot. Just trying to look the best I can.
Yet another excuse I some times use is that I am an artist, and each morning my pale blank face is a perfect canvas for me to paint! Aloha!