Marie Antoinette was the last queen of France before the French Revolution. Her take on beauty was the complete opposite of today’s French women’s attitude. Her beauty regime was labor-intensive, luxurious and even extreme at times. It was excessive even compared to other French women in her days. The following are five of her most fascinating century-old beauty secrets. They range from the most astounding to the most surprisingly unusual.
Own Your Beauty
Marie’s most disreputable beauty secret was cleansing her skin with Eau Cosmetique de Pigeon. This cleanser was surprisingly made from the bird itself, a very rare practice. The recipe of the concoction included the juice of water lilies, cucumbers, lemons, and melons, as well as crumbs of French crumbs, a dash of white wine and stewed pigeons among other curious ingredients. She would then tone her skin with Eau des Charmes after washing up with the concoction.
Lastly, she would apply her signature face mask which is still popular in France today. The face mask would make her complexion look fresh and glowing. It mask was made of two teaspoons of cognac, 1/3 cup of dry milk powder, lemon juice and one egg white. The cognac would stimulate circulation and the milk powder would promote cell renewal, while the lemon juice would brighten the face.
Take Frequent Baths
The queen bathed frequently – which is a great stress reliever — in a large a bathtub. Even though frequent bathing was unpopular in her time, Marie Antoinette enjoyed it a lot. She would spike her bath water with skin-soothing pine nuts, sweet almonds, and linseed. Next up, she would gently exfoliate her skin with rice bran-filled muslin pads for a refreshing feeling.
Boost Your Hair Color With All-Natural Ingredients
The queen was a big fan of all-natural, D.I.Y. elixirs for her hair. According to Clegg, to pull out the copper tones in her hair and increase vibrancy, she would apply ginger-hued, plant-based ingredients in paste form: rhubarb, sandal wood and turmeric were her favorites.
Apply A Beauty Mark
In the 18th century, smallpox was a major disease that left many with dark marks on their face. Women would conceal these spots with artificial beauty marks made of velvet or satin called mooches Typically, the mooches came in cheeky shapes such as hearts, moons or stars, which would convey different things based on placement. For instance, a heart on the right cheek meant the woman bearing it was married. Marie Antoinette is said to have applied her mooches near the corners of her mouth to convey that she would like a kiss.
Apply a Charming Fragrance
Antoinette would fill her rooms with fresh flowers, potpourri and mist fragrance, as well as apply essential oils such as lavender onto her body. You may think this was excessive, but the lack of adequate bathrooms in that time created some unbearable odors that had to be dealt with.
Antoinette was also obsessed with signature fragrances. She had French perfumer Jean-Louis Fargeon create bespoke various perfumes for her, including the rose, jasmine, and bergamot blend one that she had on her even during her time spent in the Tower of Paris prison.
From a scale of 1 to pigeon stew, how many of these tricks would you try?