Men Wore Makeup Way Before Women Did, Let’s Find Out!

Story by: Jeremy Cabral

Did you know, makeup the stuff most guys outside of the show business would be mocked at for using played an important role in a man’s life in ancient cultures. It all dates back to 10,000 years ago. Back then tribal men would wear paint either as camouflage (to hunt animals) or for battle (to instill a sense of fear among enemies). There was no aspect of ‘beautifying’ oneself; it was purely functional.

Later, in around 4,000 BC, Egyptian kings and pharaohs wore heavy eye makeup. King Tutankhamen and the men during his reign used a green shade as they believed green invoked the sun and sky gods. Japanese and Chinese men in 3,000 BC wore nail polish to signify their higher social status. The ingredients they used included eggs, gelatin and acacia gum. You could say they were quite ingenious!

Even more extreme? The Romans painted the tops of their heads (not just their faces) to conceal premature baldness. They’d also powder up their faces to lighten their complexions.

It made sense because those men needed to make sure they looked one step above the average person. Image was everything. Sounds familiar?

Here’s my encounter with makeup when I walked the ramp for Times Fashion Week. Cheers.

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