Cleopatra and the history of natural skin care formulas
The history of natural skin care is a fascinating tale that has it's roots in ancient Egyptian culture. Contrary to popular myth Cleopatra was not the first to experiment with herbal skin care formulas.
In 1000 B.C the Eygptians developed perhaps the first natural skin care treatment for dry skin. This was a natural treatment of bullock's bile, whipped ostrich eggs, olive oil, dough and resin mixed with milk.
Cleopatra's herbal skin care formula
Not to be outdone the Romans also practiced a form of herbal skin care. Cleopatra's favorite was a natural skin care routine consisting of a mud pack made with crocodile manure. Very exotic!
If a Roman had acne, he spent hours baking a primitive natural formula. This was a mixture of beans and lupins, which he carefully applied to his blemishes.
The use of toxic chemicals and industrial detergents in the name of skin care is a relatively recent phenomenon. Though, the Greeks were in fact the first to experiment with toxins in skin care. This was to be the first departure from natural skin care treatments.
The desire for a pale face look led to the use of lead paint. This mixture was successful for only a short time. The subjects got their wish for a pale face though it came at a price. They also lost their teeth and hair and got severely pitted skin.
Lead paint and beauty?
You would think most people would have learned their lesson about using toxins in skin care. However, the use of lead paints continued into the Middle Ages. As hair and teeth fell out, eyebrows made from mousehair and cheek plumpers made from cork became a necessity for beauty.
In the 17th century, the rosewater/urine facewash was introduced. This was a hybrid herbal skin care product mixed a known toxin.
The resulting rosy glow, combined with cerise - a poisonous mixture of lead paint and cochineal - quickly replaced the urine facewash as the new trend. Combined with poor health and hygiene, the use of toxic cosmetic materials often spelled an early demise.
How far have we progressed?
So, what have we learned. We are now in the 21st century, how far have we progressed with modern cosmetics and natural skin care product formulas? Well, skin care is now a 200 billion dollar a year industry.
Therefore, due to modern advances in the cosmetic industry skin health must be at all time high right?
Not so fast, there are now over 80 known skin diseases everything from acne to lipoma to warts. Also recent phenomena such as psoriasis and eczema both are the direct result of chemical irritants and lithium respectively.
Is there a connection between toxins in cosmetics and skin diseases? That is the 200 billion dollar question.
Review the rest of the material on this site and make your own decision.
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