This is probably what the oldest lipstick in the world looked like. Archaeologists discovered it in Iran.

The composition and color of the oldest lipstick found by archaeologists are known. Interestingly, according to the researchers, the lipstick didn’t differ much from modern products.

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Different beauty standards prevail in various parts of the world. This diversity has persisted for thousands of years. The question is: how was beauty maintained before our era? It turns out that ancient cosmetics may not have been much different from modern ones. At least that’s what one of the latest discoveries by archaeologists working in Iran suggests.

What color was the oldest lipstick?

The research team claims to have found lipstick from the Bronze Age in a deep red color. This suggests that ancient Iranians emphasized lip color as early as the second millennium BCE. Probably the oldest lipstick in the world (and certainly the oldest known) was housed in a small, richly decorated vial made of chlorite.

Remnants in the vial resemble fine purple powder. Chemical analysis revealed that it was primarily hematite. This mineral is known for its intense red color. Additionally, manganeseite and braunite were added to the lipstick composition to darken it. Other detected organic substances include galena and ground mica. Ancient cosmetic mixtures also contained plant fibers, likely due to their aromatic properties.

Color is there, scent too. The only thing missing is shine. This was likely provided by particles of quartz and crystals. However, researchers do not exclude the possibility that the identified quartz in the analysis could have simply chipped off from the vial.

Iran as the cradle of cosmetology

The artifact was found in 2001, but its age and use were not immediately determined…

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