What you are about to read below may contain aesthetically pleasing language, appealing images and unusual facts.
The following post is destined to female readers only and this is a make-up reserved area. Use make-up responsibly for the purpose of awe-inspiring look. Any similarities to existing products are not coincidental and the post is not a figment of the imagination.
After this unorthodox introduction, I am going to delve into make-up trends as well as provide some interesting facts about make-up dating back to the ancient civilizations.
Beauty and Make-up Heritage
Make-up is probably one of the most exciting inventions for us, ladies, so long as our appearance is concerned. Implicitly, this body-related technique has a purely representational function, or in other terms we use make-up to enhance and embellish ourselves and as a result be more attractive to other people. The first impression that we make is through our appearance, and make-up is there for a reason. Beauty treatments have been around for over 2000 years and Ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians among others had their little secrets. For instance, in Ancient Greece one could easily identify the social status of a woman – if she wore little and discreet make-up she would belong to the aristocracy and the noble society, conversely, heavy make-up, perhaps grotesque to a certain extent, was associated with prostitution. If you have a further interest in the matter you can check out the role and the image of hetaerae, educated and sophisticated courtesans. What we inherited from the Greeks is the look that boasts pale face, darkened eyes and eyebrows and carmine cheeks and lips.
The Egyptians gave as the well-known khol and henna. What would be the today’s magnetic attraction of expressive eyes without the khol? Evidence suggests that Egyptians used khol to create the almond-shaped falcon eye of the god Horus. According to the popular beliefs at the time, the eye of Horus was believed to have magical and protective powers, hence the strong, symbolic presence of meticulously khol-lined eyes in Egyptian culture. What is interesting to note that beside its aesthetic function, the khol had medical benefits too – it protected the eyes from ocular infections and strengthened the immune system. The it colours in Egyptian eye make-up were known to be black, malachite green and purple. Reds were, just like in Ancient Greece, used for nails and lips.
Our beauty heritage is also shaped by the use of cosmetics in Ancient Rome. Eye make-up played once again a major role in the overall appearance. However, an important breakthrough was made by the Ancient Romans – body hygiene had become an important aspect of the Roman lifestyle. There were 3 types of Roman baths – cold, warm and hot, the frigidarium, the tepidarium and the caldarium respectively, and they served various functions – from keeping a respectable hygiene to catching up on the latest news and socialising.
“Sooner or later, everything old is new again.”
Stephen King, The Colorado Kid
Bearing in mind the ancient beauty techniques and tricks, let’s have a look at what is currently trending in the make-up industry for this season.
Following the burst of colours in the ready-to-wear collections, the beauty industry reveals its piping hot colour combinations and it looks. And there will be 50 shades of:
This beautiful shade that is linked to royal and spiritual values comes in quite a few nuances – from the subtle lilac, to the Southern France’s dainty lavender and the deep, rich hues of grape, plum and aubergine – there’s something for everyone, both high-street and luxury. Whether inspired by the Egyptian beauty standards or not, Maybelline offers us a range of bright khol pencils including an eye-catching purple one, whereas Elizabeth Arden gets the purple shade around an intriguing violet lip gloss and Estée Lauder paints the nails in deep purple with the Brilliant Nails gift set. If you’re more inclined to indulge in high-end beauty products, then you can easily find what you’re looking for – eye shadow palettes, rich lipsticks or lavish nail polishes – at Giorgio Armani, Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent and Chanel and why not the extravagant Dior Addict It-lash mascara or eyeliner, that are also available in bright pink, cobalt blue and classic black.
Although labelled by psychologists and various cultural beliefs as a tedious, uninspiring and even depressing colour, this fall’s rich palette of greys breaks the stereotypes. From the metallic or matt eye shadows from high-street favourites such as Mac, L’Oréal and Rimmel, to the ultra precise Yves Saint Laurent gris vinyl liquid eyeliner and the infinite glitter, sparkling and caviar nails, proposed by any beauty make-up company, however, the widest range of colours and shades seems to be at Essie, plus amazing nail art that can inspire you for a number of occasions. On the other end of the spectrum is the sumptuous Nail Artistry Box by Dior that comes in metallic silver and features Swarovski crystal strass and lucky star stencils.
The cultural representations of the most visible colour in the spectrum are various. Despite the fact that yellow is associated with cheerfulness, optimism and wealth as well as mental capabilities and inquisitiveness, it also signifies envy, jealousy and betrayal. However, using a bright eye liner or nail polish of that shade you would attract, hopefully, more wanted attention. Since yellow is equally the colour of autumn, I have found several interesting alternatives of the sunny colour. Spicy shades, such as saffron and cinnamon, and juicy, citrus hues brighten up instantly your look. If you opt for the bright yellow eye liner or nail polish (both Maybelline), the mandarin moisturising lipstick (Elizabeth Arden), the spicy collection (Yves Saint Laurent), the Excentrique or Pimpante lipstick (Chanel) or the Rendez-vous lipstick (Dior) make sure you don’t go hard on other colours in order to avoid a make-up faux pas.
Bold make-up + Cat eye prescription glasses = La vie en rose
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Last but not least, if you have the opportunity to wear sunglasses this autumn make sure your make-up reflects your style, as contrary to what people think, make-up is subtly visible behind the lenses.