Beautiful hair in full health has always been perceived as a majorly seductive asset and for centuries, Mankind has constantly strived to preserve its shine. We look at the history of hair treatments in depth.
Animal based treatments from Antiquity
During this period, shiny and silky hair was already considered a symbol of beauty and sensuality. Women concocted antidotes to preserve the vitality of their hair and to prevent hair loss. Animal fats (lion, hippopotamus, crocodile, cat and snake) therefore became the main components of their miracle recipes. Nefertiti used them frequently!
Moreover, the first recorded hair remedy was in 4000 BC, designed to combat baldness. The mother of king Serti therefore recommended a mixture of dates, dogs’ paws and donkey hooves. All of this was cooked in oil and applied locally.
Less interest in hair treatments in the Middle Ages
During this period, the development of hair treatments was restricted by the Church. These superficial rituals were looked down upon as the Church viewed them as pure vanity. However, some doctors shared their recipes in books. These books were essentially dedicated to the upper class. One of the anti-balding formulas in the Women’s Dictionary of the 12th Century, suggested you crush pine bark, myrtle and the hair of a young girl. Then marinate the mixture in white wine before extracting the liquid obtained.
More elaborate treatments in modern and contemporary history
Up until the 20th century, hair products were mainly made from vegetable elements, notably plants, differing according to the regions of the world: shea in Sub-Saharan Africa, argan in the Middle East, almond in Asia, or even honey in Europe… All of these have remarkable properties for your hair and are still used in virtually every product available on the current market.
Due to industrialisation and globalisation, nowadays hair treatments are mass produced products and are exported worldwide. They now have highly perfected formulas which adapt to the texture and nature of your hair for a more targeted treatment.