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08 History of Cosmetics

The roots of history of natural cosmetics goes way back into the gorges of time to all the great civilisations. Caring for the body and striving to make it more attractive is as old as the human existence. The etymology of word cosmetic comes from the Greek word kosmetikos, meaning a sense of harmony, order and tranquility. The endless pursuit of adhering to the ‘ideal of beauty’, made women to discover a multitude of tricks and recipes to acquire the look of the day. The women of Ancient Greece took great pride in their physical appearance. Not surprisingly, it is known that most beauty products in ancient Greece were made from pure indigenous ingredients found in their natural environment. Honey, roses, peppermint, rosemary, aloe, sage, olive oil, myrtle, sesame oil, and almond oil are just a few examples of the treasures that can be found in Greece. Particularly in the Minoan and Mycenaean civilization were separate areas (myrepsia) manufacturing beauty products, ointments and perfumes. Such elements found in the palace of Zakros (first half 15th century), the palace of Pylos (late 13th century) and the House of the Sphinxes at Mycenae.