Home » Elizabethan Era Make-up of Face, Eyes

Elizabethan Era Make-up of Face, Eyes

Women from all ages have been drawn towards perfect skin, perfect hair, perfect lips and perfect eyes. If in case it was not endowed naturally, means for making it look so were all too readily available. The women of Elizabethan times were not free from this need.

In fact, Queen Elizabeth was a great influence on the make-up during her reign. She was known as the virgin queen owing to the way she looked. She defined the way a woman should look and had every courtesan, lady, etc clamouring for the look that she popularised and idolised. The various portraits done of the Queen is a testament to the fact. She defined beauty at that time.

elizabethan era makeup

Queen Elizabeth’s skin was alabaster smooth and pale as milk without any blush to add colour to the whiteness. The make up used was heavy and several layers were ingeniously put on.

Elizabethan Beauty Facts

White skin and light coloured hair was the ideal. It was the image of noble women and women of class. They achieved it using many concoctions and not a few detrimental to skin and hair. Ceruse, a mixture of vinegar and lead was used to achieve porcelain white skin.

Colour extracted from plants and flowers were used extensively. Some preferred tin ash, sulphur and alum while other swore by egg white and talcum powder that hid wrinkles effectively. This was not only harmful but downright poisonous. It was all the rage to wash the face with mercury in the Elizabethan era.

Elizabethan Era Make up

Face paint was known as fucus, it was a combination and types of red colour. Vermillion was most popular of all. Cochineal and madder were also used as rouge. It was applied in a thick layer on the lips.

Elizabethan Era Make up

Eyes were made to look darker and brighter with black kohl or antimony and belladonna. Belladonna enlarges the pupils making the eyes look bigger and more attractive. It was not uncommon to pluck eyebrows to obtain a high browed look and a high forehead. Oil, cumin seeds, celandine and saffron were used to colour the hair yellow and maintain that blonde look.

In the case, a woman could not get the right golden shade of hair, she would use wigs. Queen Elizabeth herself is purported to have a number of wigs. They were also called periwigs. Many women even went so far as to shave themselves bald and wear a wig all the time.

The Elizabethan women went to great pains to achieve the definition of beauty as it was at that time.

More Info On- England Fashion During Elizabethan Age, Outfits and Cothing Fashion, Life and Roles of Elizabethan Era Women, Elizabethan Hairstyles

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