1. What's the deal with red lipstick? Some scientists think that red lips on women is a biological cue for mating.
2. Ancient Egyptians used a mixture of ant eggs and crushed beetles for lipstick.
3. The same chemical that those beetles produce is still used today in modern lipstick.
4. Humans have probably been wearing cosmetics for at least 125,000 years.
5. According to scientists, how we wear makeup likely reveals a lot about why we find certain feminine features — like eyes and lips — attractive.
6. Sparkly eyeshadow has been around since at least the Ancient Egyptians. They often used a paste made of malachite (a greenish sparkly mineral) and ground-up beetle shell.
7. Roman women were pretty in to thick eyelashes. They made mascara by putting burnt cork mixed with water all up in there.
8. Roman women also ingested the oils from poisonous nightshade plants to dilate their eyes and make them look bigger.
9. Poison for beauty is still in. Botox, aka botulinum toxin, is a toxic chemical produced by the same bacteria responsible for the fatal disease botulism.
10. Super toxic lead-based mixtures were all the rage in cosmetics from ancient Egypt all the way to 19th century Europe.
11. And as late as the 1800s, leeches were often used as a way to reduce redness in the face (by literally sucking the blood out of it).
12. Scientists say both men and women like clear skin because it is a sign of youth and good health.
13. Ancient Romans used a mixture of oil obtained from the intestines of a crocodile and cyprus oil to make freckles and pimples disappear.
14. Mono-brows were totally hot for the women of Ancient Rome. Penciling that shit in was totally legit.
15. Ancient Egyptian men wore nail coloring to show their status. Pharaohs and aristocrats got to use red.
17. What ever the reasons may be, it seems that the decoration of people's faces and bodies may well be one of the oldest and most consistent of human behaviors.
In other words, wearing makeup is human. Human AF, actually.
Science Writer, Fossil Beastmaster
Contact Alex Kasprak at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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