The history of cosmetics spans over a period of 7,000 years or more. Ever wonder how any of this stuff was invented? Who came up with the idea of wearing lipstick? And deodorant? Take a look below at this curious list of facts about makeup and cosmetics to find out!
1. Ancient Sumerians are said to be the first to invent and wear lipstick, approximately 5,000 years ago. They crushed gemstones to decorate their faces, lips and around the eyes.
2. Ancient Egyptians wore lipstick to emphasize their social status rather than gender. This was also common in the Roman era, men painted their lips to show their social rank.
3. Nail polish originated in China about 3000 B.C. It was made of egg whites, beeswax, gelatin, dyes and gum Arabic.
4. In the 1920s, the automobile industry developed the automotive paint formula that was later adapted by French manicurist Michelle Manard to create nail polish. The final product was then launched by Revlon in 1932 as the first colored nail enamel.
5. During the 16th century, coal tar was used as mascara, eyebrow pencil, and eyeliner. It was highly flammable and caused blindness.
6. L’Oreal’s founder Eugène Schueller invented the first synthetic hair dye in 1907.
7. The first commercial deodorant was patented in the 19th century by American inventor Edna Murphey. She based her formula on a liquid antiperspirant her father, a physician, had developed to prevent surgeons from getting sweaty hands.
8. Hair spray was developed in the 1920s in Europe. It was introduced in the US around the same time the aerosol can was developed. The first packaged hair spray for mass market was sold by Chase products in 1948.
9. The average American woman spends over $300,000 in cosmetics during her lifetime. (Based on a survey conducted by SkinStore.)
10. The word "Cosmetic" derives from the Greek word "Kosmos" (adornment) which was later added to the French language as "Cosmétique" and finally turned into the English noun, Cosmetic; the art of beautifying the body.
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