A wander down memory lane...

A wander down memory lane...


Happy Remembrance Sunday ❤️

I always feel full of gratitude, admiration, and reflection on this day. And speaking of reflection, I fell down a rabbit hole earlier this week whilst researching the World Wars. I was wondering the type of products that were available back then and somehow manged to trace skincare back to the Ancient Egyptians!

I was truly fascinated by how it all began, what tricks have stood the test of time and the bits that have (thankfully!) evolved along the way! So, as many of you are as nerdy about skincare as I am, I thought we could take this wander down memory lane together...

Why Queen Cleopatra was way ahead of her time…

As mentioned above, the first recorded proof of skincare routines were found in Egypt…3000 BC!! As you would expect, they used natural ingredients only and utilised other readily available substances such as sand. Perhaps what they are most renowned for though, is their sour milk baths.

Made famous by the timeless beauty, Queen Cleopatra herself, these basic-sounding soaks were actually way ahead of their time! Egyptians found that the sour milk left their skin silky smooth, soft and youthful which is no surprise given the fact we now know sour milk contains the wonderful AHA, Lactic Acid. It buffs away dead skin cells in seconds to unveil the new healthy ones beneath.

Fortunately, you no longer have to linger in a tub of slightly smelly, sour milk to achieve these glowing results. Science and technology have advanced hugely so that Lactic Acid can now be extracted and used effortlessly in serum form. In fact, we use a vegan version in our Exfoliating Cell Renewal Serum, so just a few drops applied before bed, will give you skin as smooth and radiant as Cleopatra herself.

The Ancient Greek skincare secret we still use today…

The Ancient Greeks put their much-appreciated stamp on skincare history with the use of oils. They were surrounded by an abundance of olive oil in particular, which they used as both a moisturiser and hair treatment.

Now as you can imagine, olive oil has a wonderful texture for strengthening your skin barrier and protecting your complexion from the external environment. But the reason the ancient Greeks famously had such beautiful, glowing skin is because olive oil is naturally packed with vitamins D, A, K and E, and a perfect blend of antioxidants too.

This powerful cocktail reduced skin damage, puffiness, inflammation and ageing. In fact, olive oil has so many extraordinary benefits, that despite the massive advances in product development, it’s still a key ingredient in the Ultimate Moisturiser today.

One thing the Ancient Greeks and I don’t see eye to eye on though is the use of the discarded olive stones…They used to bash them up into a fine rubble and then use it as a face scrub. I know we are all well aware of my dislike for scrubs at this point, however even I must give them some brownie points for the ingenuity here. Top marks for effort, originality and a ‘no waste’ philosophy!

How heroic wartime women maintained their routines…

It may seem frivolous to discuss beauty during the wars, however, feeling presentable and confident was many women’s way of literally putting on a brave face and fighting for their country.

Despite the fact that skincare and makeup were products you bought rather than made at this point, when rationing was extremely tight, women had to go back to basics to maintain their routines. Vegetables such as beetroot were turned into lip stains, shoe polish was used as mascara and when tights were difficult to get hold of, women were known to mix a touch of eyeliner with Bisto gravy granules and massage it into their legs for a fake tan effect.

The one piece of history that truly blew my mind this week though, was the discovery of what may be the original ‘Kit’, created by Elizabeth Arden. Designed and given specifically to service women during the War, the Kit contained a capsule cosmetic wardrobe just like our modern-day version.

Inside the neatly packed leather case was a cleansing cream, moisturiser, lipstick, foundation, powder, comb, and a mirror. It gave these true wonder women a little self-care during unimaginable times and fitted neatly into their military coat pockets.

Unfortunately, the Elizabeth Arden Kit went out of production in 1956, but the BASE Proactive Age Kit is on its way back to you alongside the Hot Cloth Cleanser this Tuesday 🎉🥰

I can’t thank you enough for your patience as we’ve waited on the stock and hope when you get your hands on it, it makes you feel as empowered as those incredible service women, all those years ago.

Thank you will never be enough to justify their sacrifice, but we’ll continue to remember and celebrate them, forever.

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead,
Amy x

Amy x

Amy is a qualified skin expert and founder of BASE. When she’s not writing about skincare, you’ll find her applying it, developing it or daydreaming about it instead!