26Victorian Tapeworm Diet Revival
The tapeworm diet originated in the Victorian Era, where women ingested tapeworms to achieve the fashionable look of pale skin, dilated eyes, red cheeks, and a tiny waist. Still practiced today, women take a pill with a tapeworm egg inside.
27. A stereotype about Circassian women being the ideal standard of attractiveness persisted, particularly in the 18th century, with cosmetic companies claiming to sell products used by Circassian women.
28. The drug used to dilate eyes (Atropine) is derived from the "Belladonna plant," named "bella donna" in Italian, meaning "beautiful woman." Centuries ago, women used the herb in eye drops to dilate pupils for a seductive appearance.
29. An outbreak of syphilis led to a surge in wigmaking, as wigs covered up baldness and head sores caused by the disease. Powdered wigs, popular at the time, contained lavender or orange to mask unpleasant odors.
30. A growing number of wealthy women opt for cosmetic surgery known as "Blowtox"-botox injections in the scalp. This prevents nerves from activating sweat glands, allowing them to leave the gym with their hair still looking blow-dried.
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31Vermilion in Ancient Roman Beauty
Vermilion was originally referred to as a pigment made from mercury ore (cinnabar). This highly prized color in ancient Rome was applied to cheeks as a form of rouge, despite its known dangers.
32. During World War II, the rationing of nylon left women without stockings. Faced with the fashion faux pas of going bare-legged, creative women resorted to painting on their stockings, some even using eyeliner to draw a trompe l'oeil seam on the back of their legs.
33. Ohaguro, the custom of dyeing one's teeth black, was popular in Japan until the Meiji era. It was primarily a married women's practice, with sporadic male participation, but it also served a useful purpose by preventing tooth decay, much like modern dental sealants.
34. In the 1800s, earwax served as a lip balm and a pain reliever for puncture wounds.
35. The ancient Egyptians used a mascara solution made from crocodile feces, kohl, water, and honey. Victorian women, on the other hand, employed a combination of ash and elderberry juice as mascara.
36Indian Skin Trade's Disturbing Reality
The Indian skin trade involves trafficking and duping poor Indian women into selling their skin for use in penis and breast enlargements in the global cosmetic surgery market.
37. 5000 years ago, the Chinese created nail polish, symbolizing wealth and power among the elite. It was forbidden among the general population, with reports of commoners being sentenced to death for wearing it.
38. Foreskins are used to make high-end skin creams containing fibroblasts grown on and harvested from the foreskin. One foreskin can be used for decades to produce fancy face creams like SkinMedica, endorsed by Oprah.
39. Applying hemorrhoid cream to your chest and waist can create a more muscular appearance by drawing water from the skin and reducing swelling, a technique employed by some bodybuilders.
40. In West Africa, skin-whitening is a multi-billion-dollar industry, with up to 70% of women using lightening creams. Advertisements promote a "fresh" (light-skinned) look on billboards reading "Perfect White," as women aspire to find partners and secure influential positions.
41Perfumes' Hidden Whale Vomit Ingredient
Until recently, most perfumes contained a preservative called "ambergris," which is hardened sperm whale vomit. Despite its unpleasant odor, chunks of ambergris found on beaches are valued at tens of thousands of dollars per pound.
42. Cosmetics leave a persistent chemical coating on the skin, altering the bacterial composition even after washing. Research on volunteers refraining from product use for three days revealed that identified skin molecules mostly originated from cosmetics. Increased bacteria in areas with sunscreen-related chemicals is one example of how this persistence may contribute to altered bacterial growth.
43. Cosmetics introduce chemicals like phthalates, leading to disruptions in the endocrine system and potential insulin resistance. Over 97% exposure in children was found, linking higher exposure to increased body mass index and larger waistlines. The impact extends beyond beauty products, affecting everyday items like car interiors, shower curtains, and children's toys.
44. The small cloth on the back of your chair on a plane or train is called an 'antimacassar,' originally used to protect chairs from macassar oil, a famous hair product in the Victorian period.
45. Urea, once extracted from horse urine, serves as a skin softener and humectant, helping collect and hold moisture in the skin.
46Emperor's Gift: Fragrance and Camel's Milk
Chinese Emperor Qianlong was enamored with an Uyghur woman who naturally emitted a fine fragrance from her skin. She was given as a gift to the Emperor and carefully escorted all the way to the imperial palace in Beijing, washing every day in camel's milk to preserve her mysterious fragrance.
47. Sodium lauryl sulfate, a lathering agent in most shampoos and a known irritant, is also found in many skincare products and oral medications.
48. A prostaglandin analogue used topically to treat ocular hypertension in glaucoma patients is employed in the mascara product "Latisse." This ingredient has the side effect of increasing the length and volume of eyelashes and can induce heterochromia (eyes that have different colors).
49. Cosmetics company L'Oreal grows approximately five square meters of human skin per year through derma farming, using it for pharmaceutical and cosmetic testing.
50. The FDA has banned the use of microplastics in rinse-off cosmetics.