History Of Hair Removal

Ancient people may have used Pumice Stones to remove unnecessary hair, and our very early ancestors may have begun the tradition of hair removal.

We know that people in the Indus Valley Civilizations in what is now Pakistan as well as those in the other great civilizations of the time (around 5,000 years ago), shed their body hair from Egypt, China and Mesopotamia and we know that men have shaved. Body hair would have been painful and unhygienic, and so it should have been discarded in hot climates as it is today. Using and sharpening metal tools on flints, razors must have been made and used by men, and even women.Have a look at the Brazillian style to get more info on this.

As people learned how to make thread, women in Pakistan, India and the Middle East may have used this to extract hair as threading (as it is called) is still being done by women in Pakistan, India and the Middle East; it is called Arabic khite. Women use a thread to pluck the eyebrows of another woman but it can also be used to remove hair from the legs. Naturally, people coming from hot climates don’t have as much body hair as people living in cooler ones do.

The ancient Egyptians used sugar to extract unnecessary hair which is based on the same waxing principle. The paste used is sugar-based, and rose water may be applied to it to give people the impression they were being pampered, rather than experiencing an ordeal that was not completely painless. This is simply not as painful as waxing, which is nowadays a more common form of hair removal. The paste sticks to the hairs rather than to the skin, making removing the paste and hair more bearable. This is much more convenient since the paste is easier to use than hot wax, as it is only cooled to room temperature. Because only natural ingredients are used in the paste, it is safer for skin health than waxing.

The ancient Egyptians took hair removal to what we might find lengths today, as they all shaved their heads too and wore wigs afterwards. The pharaohs (including Cleopatra) often wore false beards that, it is claimed, reflected a godlike status on them. There is contradictory data, however, as to whether all women or all men have removed their body hair or not, although they probably have removed most.

The ancient Greeks were especially conscious of body hair and when a young girl reached puberty her first pubic hair was either removed by sugaring or some form of waxing, or with a pair of tweezers they were pulled out.

European women in the Renaissance varied in their perception of body hair, with Italians providing books dedicated to women’s (but not men’s) hair removal methods. The Italian-born French queen Catherine De Medici (1519-1589) forbade the women at her court to cut their pubic hair, although one can not be sure why she did so. Male doctors of the 16th century were of the opinion that women should remove their bodily hair because failure to do so would make them aggressive, argumentative and generally unpleasant. Prostitutes, however, had shaved pubic hair, but then wore “merkins” (little wigs) to cover up the fact.