Eyelashes: From Wicked Witches to Flirty Fun

Ancient Aliens and the Age of Giants introduces you to Azazel, the Watcher, one of the 200 fallen angels who got in trouble for commingling with mankind. His band of rebels wanted to take human women as wives, and they wanted to teach us the arts of civilization. Teaching us was absolute and utter taboo, and it got them in a lot of trouble.

Each rebel Watcher was tasked with teaching humans a specific skill. Penemu taught us how to read and write, Baraqel taught us astrology, and so forth. Azazel taught women the art of deception through cosmetics and jewelry — how to ornament the body, dye the hair, paint the face and eyebrows, beautify the eyelids, and use antimony as an eyeliner and mascara.

This dates all the way back to biblical times, and what Azazel taught women became one of the fundamental evils in the Salem witch trials which took place thousands of years later. Witchcraft wasn’t just about casting spells and causing bad luck, it was about deceiving men into believing that you were more beautiful than you actually were. Yes, this was a punishable sin.

An Act of Parliament was passed in 1670 England prohibiting the use of beauty aids to lure a man into marriage which included every variety of cosmetics and make-up, false teeth and hairpieces, and all clothing which we associate with beauty today, including high-heeled shoes.

Not only would this get you arrested on charges of witchcraft and sorcery, the penalties were just as severe. If you were lucky, you’d get off with just having the marriage annulled. But woe to the unlucky woman whose artificial beauty aids landed her the full penalties of witchcraft, which at that time was still punishable by death.

Did the notion of forbidding beauty aids go all the way back to the Watchers of the Bible, those “sons of God” who coveted the “daughters of men” and taught us forbidden knowledge?

A detailed account of the Watchers is not found in many traditional bibles today, and is relegated to extra-biblical books. The Watchers and their earth-born children were giants, so they are among the featured giants in the non-fiction book: Ancient Aliens and the Age of Giants.

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  • Once the genie was out of the bottle and humans had embraced the forbidden teachings, the Bible abounded with tales of fallen women, idolators, and every manner of sinner.

    The Wycliffe Bible depicted the wicked Jezebel as a woman who “painted her eyes with (the) ointment of lecherous women,” which clearly demonstrates that putting make-up your eyes was not an acceptable act.

    2 Kings 9:30 in the Darby Bible tells how Jezebel painted her eyes, decked her head, and looked out the window when she heard that Jehu was coming. In other words, she made herself pretty and then watched for his arrival. Every bible has a different wording for each passage, but decking or adorning or attiring her head could have meant doing her hair.

    Vernor’s Encyclopedia lists Jezebel under antimony, a cosmetic that dates back thousands of years as a beauty aid in many cultures, as well as for protection from the glaring sun:

    “As large black eyes were thought the finest, persons of both sexes, who were careful of their beauty, rubbed their eyes, eyelids, and round the eyes with a needle dipped in a box of paint made of antimony, with a design of blackening them.”

    “The ancient practice of using antimony as a pigment is still kept up by the men of Syria, Arabia, and Babylonia… who anoint and blacken themselves about the eyes; and both men and women put black upon their eyes in the desert, to preserve them from the heat of the sun.”

    Wang’s History of Antimony refers to it as an “eye expander” which was historically called kohl, alcool, and alkohol.

    A Supplement to the Pharmacopoeia adds that antimony was also used as a medicinal, as well as to purify gold and by the ladies “to paint their eyebrows and eyelashes black.”

    However, the ancients went far and beyond just lining their eyes and painting their eye lashes with antimony — they clipped split ends off their eyelashes to promote longer, fuller growth.

    The Toilette of Health, Beauty, and Fashion gives detailed advice on how to have longer, fuller lashes. A mother in Georgia, Circassia, Persia, and Hindostan would take great care “to promote the growth of children’s eye-lashes.” Apparently they believed that eyelashes became afflicted with split ends just like the hair on your head, which prevented the lashes from growing longer.

    In order to promote longer lashes, the Circassians clipped off the “forked and gossamer-like points (not more) of the eye-lashes” with a pair of scissors. The eyelashes would grow long, be finely curved, and take on a silky gloss. This “tipping” of the eye lashes was done every four to six weeks, on children and even infants, usually while they were asleep.

    All sorts of concoctions were used in the days of yore to “blacken the eye-lashes and eye-brows.” One ointment consisted of the juice of elderberries, burnt cork, or cloves burnt at the candle. Sometimes black of frankincense, resin, and mastic were used. This mixture allegedly did not come off with perspiration.

    Yet another was an ounce each of pitch, resin, frankincense, and mastic: “Throw them upon live charcoal, over which lay a plate to receive the smoke. A black soot will adhere to the plate, and with this soot, impregnate the eye-lashes and eye-brows, by rubbing them very delicately. This operation, if occasionally repeated, will preserve them perfectly black.”

    Antimony was used by the Oriental beauties as an eye liner, and to darken the eye lashes. They applied it to both the eyelash hairs, and the skin next to the roots, with a small streak extending outward from the exterior angle of each eye. In other words, they created a “tail” like you see in ancient Egyptian murals. When done artfully, you could make “even the plainest little grey eyes appear full-orbed and piercingly dark.”

    Toilette goes on to say that the brilliancy of the eye, and its appearance of fullness, depend to some degree on its form, and on the “magnitude of the eye-ball,” but more importantly, it is the closeness and amplitude of the eye-lashes, and the diameter of the pupil, that gives us the greatest beauty.

    We have little control over the pupil of the eye, but we do have the power to enhance our eyelashes, to “bring them to the highest perfection of gloss and thickness.”

    The Greeks and Romans held very different opinions on beauty. The Greeks preferred the eyebrows to be farther apart, with a well-proportioned forehead, and big eyes. The Romans, however, wanted the eyebrows to meet as if one unbroken line, under a small forehead, with medium-sized eyes. 19th century stage make-up books offered specific tips for a passionate look, a villainous look, and so forth, and the ancient Roman beauties would surely have been taken for villains today.

    In the early days of theater and stage, eye lashes were rarely mentioned in the make-up instructions, though it was in these texts that we start to hear about “mascaro” — a substance that was used on seemingly every hair possible except for eyelashes.

    Hageman’s Make-up Book tells us that the theatrical make-up kit in the early 1900s included a variety of grease paints, mustache paste, complexion powder, hair powder, nose putty, black wax, lip rouge, clown white, eyebrow pencils, crayons, India ink, orange wood lining stick, gums, oils, creams, tools, and curiously — mascaro.

    This precursor of mascara was a water-based cosmetic used to change the color of mustaches, beards, eyebrows, and hair, and was applied with a small toothbrush. It was especially useful in blending your exposed hairs into the colors of a wig, as it came in red, white, grey, blond, auburn, titian, black, and brown. No mention was made regarding eyelashes, however, in spite of the similarity of names: mascaro to mascara.

    Make-up tips for theater performers suggested that villains should have thick, heavy eyebrows, spaced closely together, with just enough room for the deep, vertical wrinkle to be exposed if one existed. Apparently the Romans valued villainous faces. Elsewhere, theatrical make-up tips suggest that black eyeliner is useful for “passionate lovers and fanatics.”

    The 1890 Century Dictionary lists mascaro as a paint used by actors to color eyebrows and eyelashes, and noted that the Spanish word for mascaro was mascara. By the early 1900s, mascaro was being used with “a wee brush” to “tip the lashes” according to Photoplay.

    An 1802 Spanish-English Dictionary listed both mascara and mascaron, neither depicting great beauty but rather hideousness, as follows:

    • MASCARA is either a mask, or a person whose face is covered with a mask. An entire party of people wearing masks is a masquerade.
    • MASCARON is variously a large, hideous mask, a ridiculously grave and solemn person, or hideous and grotesque forms such as are used to adorn fountains and buildings.

    Mascaro might not have been suggested as a beauty aid to enhance eyelashes in the early theatrical make-up books or dictionaries, but it did earn a flirty mention regarding a brand of dolls known as Shaver Dolls, according to American Cloak and Suit Review.

    “The doll, which is simply a duplicate of the child, offers no fresh point of contact. The lady doll with enormous eyes and mascaro lashes teaches a child to flirt.”

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    Mascara has come a long way since the days of antimony, and old-timey stage makeup such as mascaro. You can have longer, thicker, fuller lashes with special blends such as Younique Mascara — a safe, natural beauty product that uses green tea fibers to add volume and lengthen eye lashes in addition to the mascara. The result is as dramatic as fake eyelashes, without all the muss and fuss. Check out Younique’s 3D Fiber Lashes against regular mascara, talk about the Wow Factor!

    Comparison of Younique Moodstruck fiber lashes against ordinary mascara

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    Ancient Aliens and the Age of Giants; by Lars Bergen and Sharon Delarose; Gityasome Books; 2014.
    The New Encyclopaedia; or, Universal Dictionary of Arts and Sciences, Volume 2; printed for Vernor, Hood, and Sharpe, and Thomas Ostell; printed by R. Morison in London; 1807.
    Antimony: Its History, Chemistry, Mineralogy, Geology, Metallurgy, Uses, Preparations, Analysis, Production, and Valuation; with Complete Bibliographies; by Chung Yu Wang, M.A., B.Sc.; Charles Griffin & Company, Limited; 1909.
    A Supplement to the Pharmacopoeia, and Treatise on Pharmacology in General; including not only the Drugs and Preparations Used by Practitioners of Medicine, but also Most of Those Employed in the Chemical Arts; together with A Collection of the Most Useful Medical Formulae, Veterinary Drugs, Patent Medicines, and Other Compounds ; by Samuel Frederick Gray; Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown, Green, and Longman; Simpkin, Marshall, and Co.; Sherwood, Gilbert, and Piper; Henry Renshaw; John Churchill, & E. Cox; London; 1836.
    The Toilette of Health, Beauty, and Fashion; Allen and Ticknor of Boston; 1833.
    Hageman’s Make-up Book; by Maurice Hageman; published by The Dramatic Publishing Company of Chicago; 1898.
    The Century Dictionary: An Encyclopedic Lexicon of the English Language, Part 13; edited by William Dwight Whitney; 1890.
    Photoplay: The Aristocrat of Motion Picture Magazines, Volume 10; published by Photoplay Magazine Publishing Company; 1916.
    A New Dictionary of the Spanish and English Languages: Spanish and English; compiled by Henry Neuman; printed Vernor and Hood of London; 1802.
    American Cloak and Suit Review, Volume 19, Number 1; published by John M. O’Connor & Co. of New York; 1920.

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