Makeup Throughout The Years

By  | 

It’s amazing to think that makeup has been around for years and years but the technique and style for makeup has changed.

Ever wondered what was trending back in the Elizabethan era?

When you think about it, it’s strange that makeup has changed per era. Saying that, you find that a few people like to still wear the 60’s or 80’s style of makeup. This is great because it shows our character and our personality. Not everyone likes to follow fashion so they tend to stick to what they think it best for their face.

If we all looked the same, life would be boring!

Take a look at these photos that shows the difference of makeup throughout the years.

Ancient Egypt c. 3150-31BC

Eyes – Ancient Egyptians like to line the eyes with kohl.
Lips – They like to wear quite bright lip colour -red, orange, blue-black and magenta
Hair – Braided plaits that would be subtle and show off the face.

In Ancient Egypt, kohl was popular for makeup. If any of you that don’t know, kohl was a dark coloured powered made by crushed antimony. Kohl was used for mascara and to darken eyes, eyelashes and eyebrows. It was believed to prevent the eyes from going blind so all the doctors ensured that carried this in their bags. Kohl was also believed to warn off evil spirits.

For eyeshadow, they would make this naturally by using either chrysocolla which is a blue-green cooper and this gave them the bright colour or another mineral (depending on the colour they liked)

Lipstick was worn by men and women and was a sign of upper class. They used red ochre which is a natural coloured clay. This was used to tint the lips and the cheeks.

Ancient Greece c. 800-500 BC

Eyebrows – Yes you are seeing the unibrow!!! I don’t think this will be looping back round in fashion any time soon!
Eyeshadow – The natural look
Skin – The fashion was to have pale skin

Natural beauty is what Ancient Greece was all about. No heavy or bright coloured makeup, it was all natural and soft shades. Only the rich could afford the makeup.

The unibrow (yes I know!) was very popular with the men and women, they loved to show this off. They would use a dark powder to connect the 2 eyebrows together (FYI unibrow or aka monobrow term is used when the two eyebrows look like one eyebrow)

Pale skin was a sign of beauty. It showed that the person with pale skin didn’t work in the fields or on the land in the sun and they were wealthy. People that didn’t have pale skin, would lighten it with white lead which would damage their health. Chalk was also an option to use but this would rub off easily.

Still, I can’t get over the unibrow! It’s amazing!

India’s Gupta Age c. 320-550 A.D

Eyes – Like the Ancient Egyptians, they liked to use either kohl and to this day, kajal.
Hair – Tend to be tied back with decorative flowers
Skin – The married Hindu women would wear a bindi and also wore henna

For their eyes (and to this day) they use either kohl or kajal. Kajal contains no lead minerals. They would apply to eyelashes, waterline and outer rims of their eyes. Regardless of age, they would even apply to babies believing that it would protect and strengthen their babies eyes.

Indians would generally wear their hair tied back or in a bun with decorative flowers.

Henna was painted on their hands and feet especially for a Hindu wedding. Henna is still popular to this day.

Married Hindu women would wear a bindi (it is a tradition that is a bright dot of red applied to the centre of the persons forehead close to the eyebrows) If the woman becomes a widow, they must rub the bindi off. The red colour is a sign of love and honor.

Elizabethan Era c. 1558-1603

Skin – They would use a powder to ensure the skin looks pale
Forehead – They would shave off their eyebrows and shave their hairline to create a bigger forehead
Lips – Red lips
Hair – Red or auburn were popular

In the Elizabethan era, the style and fashion was directed by Queen Elizabeth I. As the Queen grew older, she would change her makeup to stronger shades which was great for hiding her wrinkles. Women would like to follow the Queen for style. Women would like to either shave or pluck their eyebrows and hairline to create a higher forehead. This was seen as a sign of aristocracy.

Their hair was also pale and women would even use urine to bleach their hair. If they didn’t use urine, they would either use cumin seeds, oil and celadine to achieve blonde hair. Crazy I know! It was also a time when people were dying their hair red or auburn. Queen Elizabeth I had this colour hair so majority of people followed suit. Hair was generally worn down and tied once married. Wigs were popular by women with thinning hair or women who wanted to change the colour of their hair without dying their own. It is believed that the fashionistas of this era, were so committed on having fashionable hair, they would shave their own hair and only wear wigs.

Rouge lip colour was popular. To achieve this colour they would use minerals such as madder an Asian plant with red roots and animal dyes which would give the rouge shade. This was also worn on cheeks.

Japanese Geisha c. Mid 1700s

Skin – Bold white foundation
Lips – Bold red lips
Eyes – Bold Red and black outlining the eyes
Hair – Shimada, a high chignon (knotted hair)

Geishas became popular in the mid 18th century and still are to this day. They are talented entertainers (dancers, play instruments and write poetry). They train from a young age and their level of training reflects how much makeup they wear. Training can take 2-5 years.

Strong and immaculate makeup is vital to the Geisha tradition. Bold and heavy white foundation is applied on the skin except for the nape of the neck. This is due to this area being known as the graceful W shape.

The junior first year Geisha’s wear rouge red lip colour on their bottom lip. Fully trained Geisha’s wear red lips in the shade of a budding flower.

Geisha’s eyes are lined with charcoal and the outline is red.

Their hair is traditionally worn in a Shimada which is like a chignon but higher. This is then decorated with hairpins.

Pre-French Revolution c. 1775-1789

Skin – Pale with powder and they added black beauty spots
Cheeks – Rouge red
Lips – Shiny with grease
Hair – Taller the better and white

As you may be able to tell, the makeup and hair in this era was influenced by Marie Antoinette. She reigned with her husband until the French Revolution. It was the fashion is have the palest skin. Women would even draw on blue lines to represent their veins. They would also draw on black beauty spots on their face.

High tall hair was the norm but as many people’s hair didn’t reach a good height, they would wear wigs. Hair was white with powder.

Victorian Era c. 1837-1901

Skin – Natural, clear and lightly powered
Cheeks – Pinch your cheeks to create a natural red blush
Hair – Generally long, worn up in a chignon bun

As Queen Victoria was the ruler, she thought that makeup was impolite to wear. Women would concentrate on their skin rather than makeup. They would lightly dust their face with power but lip and cheek colour was thought to be disgraceful. It was thought that women pinched their cheeks to create their natural red glow.

Generally women had long hair and would often be worn up in a chignon.

Swingin’ Sixties c. 1960-1969

Lips – Pink was popular
Eyes – Range of different colour and fake eyelashes
Cheeks – Cheeks were contoured to give the indented cheeks look
Hair – Buffant hair and wigs

This is the era that women became more liberal and experimental. They would wear any colour eyeshadow, false eyelashes and eyeliner. I know what everyone’s thinking… eyelashes were around then! Yep and also contouring was. Women would contour their face to give them a chiseled cheek look.

Also the black beauty industry exploded. Before this time, black makeup was limited and so after the 1960’s, there was a wider range of makeup available for darker skin tones.

So there you have it… I hope you have taken a few ideas from this article and tied them into your makeup routine! Who knows what lies ahead for the makeup trends!

youtube video BuzzFeedVideo

********************************************************************************************************** Is How Dramatically Women’s Makeup Has Changed Throughout History A diverse group of women show just how much women’s makeup has changed through the ages.

Eyes – Lined with kohl; often wore green or blue eyeshadow Lips – Popular lip colors included orange, red, blue-black, and magenta Hair – Braids framed the face

Women in Ancient Egypt lined their eyes with kohl, a substance made of soot, metal, and fat. Kohl was thought to help prevent the eyes from blindness, and doctors carried it in their bags. Green and blue eyeshadows were made naturally, with the mineral malachite. Lipstick in ancient Egypt symbolized status – both men and women of the upper class wore it.

Click here to read the full original article.


You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply