12 Random funny facts about beauty: How beauty has changed over time?

Since the ancient times women have been sharing beauty tips and advice, but how that advice has changed over the years! It’s not just the products that have changed beyond all recognition; it’s the attitudes, so we take you back to a time, when it was perfectly acceptable and reasonable to say: ‘There are no ugly women. There are only women who do not know how to look pretty’ in a beauty tip book of 1926, and here we give you 12 beauty tips from the past and random funny facts about beauty that can raise your eyebrows…

1. A really natural facial

Back in ancient Japan, the geisha girls, who were famed for their beauty, had a novel way to clear up their complexion: a face mask of bird poop, and not just any bird poop, nightingale poop was the preferred brand.

2. Sound advice on selecting cosmetics

Nowadays, cosmetics have to go through rigorous clinical trials, before they hit the shelves of our stores, but back in the 1920’s they took a far simpler approach to product testing, as was described in a beauty publication of the time: “Don’t use every new cosmetic you see advertised or hear recommended. Let other girls have a chance to ruin their skin.”

3. Removing blemishes and scars

Unfortunately, the ancient Egyptians had yet to discover the healing properties of vitamins A and E, and so the recommended method for removing troublesome scars as exfoliation was sandpaper!

4. Achieving the right skin tone

Before the days when a deep tan became fashionable and then became bad for you, women did all they possibly could not to have any sign of a tan on them. As time gone by, it was only those smelly peasants who worked in the fields who got tans, and proper ladies used lotions containing mercury and arsenic to bleach their skin, so as to avoid any questioning of their high standing and wealth.

5. Wartime hair straighteners

Times were tough in the Second World War, but a girl still wanted to look her best when she went out, so to appear more like a Hollywood star, they wanted to straighten their hair. No popping to the local store to buy hair straighteners then, though, so they just borrowed mums clothes iron instead.

6. ‘Good’ nutritional advice

Nowadays, we have so many different diet plans that we can try and more advice on nutrition than anyone could ever want, but back in the twenties, advice on how to cut down the calories was very simple: “Don’t eat many sweets. A pound of candy should last twenty-four hours at least.”

7. Diet advice from the 1960’s

While we do all we can to remove sugar from our diet, as recently as the 1960’s, the advice was very different. In a magazine advertisement of the period, a girl was advised to eat sugar to help her lose weight, as supposedly it took the edge of the appetite and stopped you eating more fattening foods.

8. A Roman halitosis treatment

Before Listerine or gum had even been thought of, before even the toothbrush and toothpaste, the Roman girls were still conscious of the need for fresh breath, so to remove any foul smelling residue of the last night’s feast, they chewed on a lump of charcoal for a while to freshen their breath.

9. Being full-figured and voluptuous represented beauty and prosperity 

Beauty standards have dramatically changed over time. If you look at the works of art of the past centuries, you will see lots of paintings and sculptures of curvy, full-figured ladies. Being voluptuous and curvy was a symbol of beauty and prosperity; dieting became fashionable only in the late 1800’s.

10. Shaping eyebrows

If you want well defined and shaped eyebrows that will catch the attention of any potential male suitor, then the ladies of the 1940’s had the answer, shave them off. This is at the time of wartime shortages and before the advent of entire store counters made over entirely to eye makeup, shave them off and draw them back on with some charcoal. Simple!

11. Homemade mascara

Just as there were no eyebrow pencils in the forties, there was no mascara either, so the discerning lady of the time made do with some coal dust mixed with Vaseline instead.

12. Self tan

Women during the Second World War had their own special method of self-tanning: they soaked 10 tea bags in warm water and applied the mixture on their legs to create the effect of tights. Easy, quick and effective!

Yes, beauty definitely has changed over time. Do you have some other funny facts about beauty to share? Please, feel free to do so in the comment section below.

Stay beautiful inside and out!


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