Ancient Times-3500 BC -The History of Eyelashes

EGYPT

Since the most remote times eyelashes were smeared, dyed, and  ornamented in order to give more expression to the eyes, or by magical  or medicinal reasons. The most ancient testimonies of this  practice are recorded in discoveries from 3,500 BC, in  Ancient Egypt.  Men used to style their eyelashes more than  women in  Ancient Egypt. They believed that  ointments used for that  purpose worked as a way to scare away the influence of bad spirits. Also  it was a way to recreate the image of Re, the Sun god. Even the  children, at  time of birth, had their eyelashes smeared, to strengthen  their eyesight and to keep them away from the evil eye.

But, at the same time, the practice had  medicinal purposes. Galena, one of the components used as an eye  cosmetic, was very effective as an insect repellent and disinfectant.  The weather conditions in the desertic Egyptian area were extremely dry  and hot; the eyes makeup also contributed to protect the eyes from the  sun glare. 

Women believed that malachite, another  component of the ointments, was provided by  Hathor, the goddess of  love, and it worked like an aphrodisiac. Egyptian eyelashes were commonly darken in  black or green tones, which created the “almond effect”. They used to  store their eye cosmetics in pots or glass jars. The most popular  eyelash cosmetic was the Kohl. Kohl is a preparation made in base of galena (lead sulfide) and other components, like malachite (a copper carbonate mineral) and amorphous carbon, cuprite, silicon, talc and hematite, usually mixed with animal fats.

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