Fashion In The United States After The Industrial Revolution History of Skincare Part 16: The Industrial Revolution, 1800-1849

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History of Skincare Part 16: The Industrial Revolution, 1800-1849

face of the industrial revolution

When we think of people who lived during the Industrial Revolution, it’s easy to think of characters from Charles Dickens’ novels. It’s easy to imagine a city full of sooty-faced Oliver Twist and David Copperfield. In some respects, this photo is accurate. The first half of the 19th century saw many major technological advances. The invention of the steam engine made it much easier to manufacture and transport, spawning dozens of large factories within a few years. New mining techniques were developed to produce the coal needed to power the new factories. Rural citizens looking for work began migrating to major cities such as London and New York. The air was certainly filled with Dickensian smog, but the Industrial Revolution also had a major impact on the use of skin care products and cosmetics. The number of ordinary citizens who can obtain them has increased.

moral dilemma

By the end of the 18th century, makeup was considered inappropriate for all but prostitutes and actors. Some cosmetic exceptions were allowed. Pale skin was still considered a sign of noble birth, and while the heavy lead powders of a century ago were no longer used, they were replaced with a thin coating of zinc oxide. It offered the benefit of brightening, but looked more subtle and natural than the previously very popular caked-on powders. Subtle eye shadows were also popular. Many women still formulated their own cosmetics, but modern manufacturing techniques have made mass production of these products much easier. However, it was not considered appropriate to buy and sell beauty products.For this reason, most stores sold them under the counter. **

Despite the stigma surrounding skin care and cosmetics, some women rose up to promote their use. He published a book titled The Secret Art of Keeping It Up into Old Age, promoting the use of cosmetics as a beauty aid. has published a number of recipes explaining how to make lip pomade at home. Recipes included common ingredients such as butter, wax, and natural dyes made from currants and the plant Arcanna her titria.***

But for all the women who championed the use of cosmetics, there were also many who believed that wearing makeup was the first step toward a life of sin. . For example, “Godey’s Lady’s Book” was published in the middle of the century. Women should not try to cover their blemishes with makeup, but should rely solely on “moral cosmetics,” which involves avoiding sleep and sinful pastimes such as gambling and drinking.

cleansing the natural way

Sophisticated mass production methods have made many hygiene products cheaper and more readily available. Soap was now commonplace in all but the poorest households. Women could no longer hide behind thick layers of powder, so their naturally beautiful skin was more accentuated. Harsh cleansers became easier. Egg yolks, honey, and oatmeal are all commonly used to soften skin and help reduce blemishes. Lemon juice was sometimes used to naturally bleach the skin a few shades lighter. to give way to the frail and morbid appearance of the Victorian era.

References:

** For more information on 19th century makeup, visit http://www.localhistories.org/cosmetics.html.

*** Read more about the Cosmetics Industry Advocate here: http://www.cosmetic-business.com/en/showartikel.php?art_id=1409

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