The ancient Egyptians have wowed us with their technological advancements. From the pyramids to advances in irrigation technology, the Egyptians laid the groundwork for many of today’s most important technology. Perhaps surprisingly, one of the arenas in which we benefit the most from ancient Egyptians is cosmetics, especially in regards to health and beauty technology. In fact, many of these things we still use today.
Brushing Your Teeth
Many believe that oral care is a relatively new thing, but according to North Austin Dentist, both toothbrushes and toothpaste were used in Egypt at least as far back as 3500 BC. Historical findings have revealed their recipe for the first known toothpaste, which showed an understanding of the importance of dental care. Additionally, the existence of dentists in ancient Egypt is well documented which indicates how influential and innovative they were in the field.
Any movie that features ancient Egypt is sure to feature gorgeous makeup. The real life ancient Egyptians perfected many methods and creations to enhance their natural beauty with makeup. These include:
- Burnt almonds to fill out eyebrows
- Kohl as primitive eye shadow
- Henna to dye their fingernails and hair
Many mummies have been discovered buried with cosmetics and cosmetic accessories. This illustrates their importance to ancient Egyptians.
According to The Cosmetic Concierge, ancient texts that have been unearthed which suggest that ancient Egyptians dabbled in plastic surgery. They had primitive procedures that helped them to “rebuild” faces after accidents or injuries sustained during war. Texts found that discuss fixing and rebuilding noses are a primitive precursor to the modern rhinoplasty.
Hair Care and Wigs
Ancient Egyptians went to great lengths to have attractive hair. Typical Egyptian women shaved their heads bald and wore a wig wherever they went. This offered a few benefits; bald heads were preferable in the hot Egyptian sun, bald was cleaner as well. Women of high status had a multitude of wigs usually constructed of human hair, or a mix of human hair and vegetable fibers. They maintained their wigs and styled them to their particular desires.
The materials and procedures that ancient Egyptians used for health and beauty were effective and strikingly similar to modern day products and procedures. Ancient texts have given us an insight into their desire to look and feel beautiful. The Egyptian understanding of cosmetics, dentistry and plastic surgery, allowed them to set beauty trends that carried on through the ages.
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