The Fascinating Origin of Makeup: A Journey Through the History of Beauty

Makeup, a form of artistic and cultural expression that has evolved over millennia, has its roots deep in human history. Join us on a fascinating journey through time to discover the origin and evolution of makeup.

First Manifestations in Antiquity: Origin of Makeup

Ancient Egypt (3100 BC – 332 BC):

Makeup has its first traces in Egyptian civilization, where it was considered essential to enhance beauty and protect the skin from the scorching sun. The Egyptians used products such as kohl to outline the eyes, shadows to color the eyelids, and ointments for the skin.

Mesopotamia (3500 BC – 500 BC):

In ancient Mesopotamia, both men and women applied pigments to their faces and used scented oils. The rich colors and textures were symbols of social and religious status.

First Manifestations in Antiquity: Origin of Makeup

Classical Era and Greek and Roman Beauty (500 BC – 476 AD):

Ancient Greece and Rome inherited the tradition of makeup. Greek women used white lead powder to create a pale complexion and mixed substances such as berries to color their lips and cheeks. In Rome, makeup was associated with sophistication and high society.

Middle Ages and Renaissance (476 AD – 1600 AD): Origin of Makeup

During the Middle Ages, the Church disapproved of the open use of makeup, considering it immoral. However, in the Renaissance, interest in beauty and makeup resurfaced. Ladies of high society applied white arsenic powder to achieve a pale complexion.

17th and 18th centuries – The Age of Coquetry:

Makeup at the court of Versailles, led by Louis XIV, was extravagant and elaborate. The ladies used white powders, blushes and striking eye shadows. Fashions emerged such as “mouches” (small polka dots) that were applied to communicate coded messages.

19th century – Victorian era: Origin of Makeup

The Victorian era took a more reserved approach to makeup. Women preferred a natural and healthy look, although many still applied powders and creams to enhance their beauty.

20th century – Makeup Revolution:

The 20th century marked a revolution in the makeup industry. The influence of Hollywood, the rise of celebrities and the emergence of iconic brands transformed makeup into a form of personal expression. The introduction of products such as lipstick, mascara and eye shadows diversified the options.

21st Century – The Age of Diversity and Expression:

Today, makeup is more diverse than ever. Individuality is celebrated, and the industry has embraced the inclusion of different skin tones, genders and styles. Social media and beauty culture have allowed people around the world to share and explore new trends.


Makeup has come a long way from its modest beginnings in ancient civilizations to becoming a form of art and authenticity in contemporary society. Through the centuries, it has witnessed cultural shifts, ephemeral fashions and aesthetic revolutions, always evolving to reflect the diversity and creativity of human expression. The history of makeup is a fascinating testament to the constant pursuit of beauty throughout time.

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