By Mary N. DiZazzo

Eyelashes in Retro! A Look Back!

Ciao bella,

The hype today on Brows and Lashes is incredible! However, centuries ago women and men prided themselves with the same hype, only differently. Let’s go back and see!

In Egypt 3500 B.C., Eyelids and Lashes were taken very seriously. Women and men used black and green toned ointments to enhance their eyes. Not only for style, but as a sunscreen and disinfectant. It was also believed to be an aphrodisiac, invoking the image of sun god Ra.

From 753 625 B.C., the women of Ancient Rome used kohl, saffron and burnt cork to make their lashes lustrous and thick. It was a sign of chastity.

From 1533 to 1603, Queen Elizabeth’s gold/red hair was highly regarded. Ladies used dangerous liquids to achieve the color for their eyebrows and lashes!

In 1840, Eugene Rimmel put out one of the first nontoxic mascaras. The word “rimmel” means mascara in more than 5 languages. It’s not my favorite brand of cosmetics!

In 1916, false eyelashes of human hair were woven though gauze. According to a Hollywood legend, the director wanted his star to have lashes that “brushed her cheeks to make her eyes shine larger than life” for a film. Love that!

In 1920, Maybelline mascara was trademarked by Tom Lyle Williams. Named after his sister Maybel, who used petroleum jelly, ash and coal dust to darken her singed lashes after a stove fire!

In 1923, a U.S. Patent for “Artificial Eyelashes” by Germanborn hair stylist Charles Nessler was issued.

In 1923, the first eyelash curler, the Kurlash, was invented. Even though it was difficult to use and costly, it was very popular as it achieved the desired effect.

In 1938, waterproof mascara was patented by Viennese actress Helene Vierthaler. The hot stage lights would make mascara run, so that was a divine call!

In 1958, Revlon invented the roll-on mascara in shades of green, violet and blue. The blue was a favorite of mine!

In 1967, “Twiggy Lashes” by Yardley were the rage, selling more than 20 million pairs in U.S. annually.

In 1971, the famous pink tube was launched by Maybelline for Great Lash Mascara.

In 1988, Max Factor introduced No Color Mascara, making eyelashes look shiny, thick and more natural. Great for girls attending strict Catholic schools, at least in my day!

In 2001, Jennifer Lopez sported red fox fur lashes to the Academy Awards, sparking the brand’s Tokyo Lash Bar at Shu Uemura.

In 2004, Eyelash extensions came swinging into U.S., offering product and training in Lashing soon to follow. Between 2006 and 2008, a host of manufacturers introduced Cosmetic Eyelash Conditioners for diminished lashes due to illness, genes, cancer treatments, poorly trained professionals using inferior product for eyelash extensions, etc.

I grew my lashes back beautifully with Grande Lash in a gold tube.

So here you have Eyelashes and Brows through the Ages. Grow a pair and feel the Beauty!

After a divine summer, here’s wishing my readers, colleagues and friends a Happy and Safe Labor Day weekend!

Buona giornata and God bless the United States of America!

Mary N. DiZazzo-Trumbull

Read prior weeks' "All That Zazz" columns at Mary is a third-generation cosmetologist and a Massachusetts distributor of Kosmea brand rose hip oil products. She may be contacted at (978) 470-8183 or