Russian women from ancient times were known for their beauty. From the East and the West many wealthy rulers came to Russia in search of wives and concubines.
Standards of Beauty in Ancient Times
Previously, the main criterion of female beauty was her health and a woman’s ability to give birth and bring up a healthy child, and not just one. That is why men valued wide hips and big breasts. The skin of a bride had to be white, eyebrows and eyelashes – dark, her lips – scarlet and teeth – strong and white. The image of a Russian beauty was not complete without a blond braid to her waist. These are the descriptions of female beauty that can be found in Russian epics and fairy tales.
Useful Ancient Recipes to Preserve Beauty
To maintain youth Russian women skillfully used gifts of nature. Bread with milk gave splendor to a body. Women in ancient times also knew how to bleach the face using cucumber and parsley infusion.
The food at the time was simple. Processing of products was singular – meat and vegetables were cooked in the oven or stewed. Traditional Russian shchi soup and porridge were the main secret of maintaining health and beautiful skin.
Infusions and broths of dried fruit were a source of vitamins and minerals. They made the skin supple and healthy.
To preserve the freshness of the skin in the summer women washed with mildew, and in the winter – wiped their faces with snow and rinsed with ice melt water from a silver jar.
But the most helpful for health was a weekly Russian steam room. Birch and oak brooms, tincture of herbs, Russian kvass healed the body from the inside and made skin beautiful.
Beauty and Youth Secrets of the Empress Catherine II
There are secrets that Catherine II used to stay young for a long time. Here they are:
- Catherine II loved Russian steam rooms; after it she dipped in a cold pool and rubbed her body with a mixture of milk with oats.
- It was Catherine II who introduced to Russia a trend of fruit facial masks. She loved the mask of apples and, moreover, every day ate several sour apples as well.
- To get rid of puffiness under the eyes she used raw potatoes.
- Catherine II invented the perfect rejuvenating mixture – a decoction of chamomile, horsetail, sage and linden blossoms, taken in equal proportions.
Dangerous Misconceptions of Russian Beauties
In the 19th century in Russia it became trendy to use care products from Europe. At that time there were some very strange and horrible beauty recipes:
- To give a special sparkle to your eyes, the roundness to the body and glow to the face women drank arsenic, which is a very strong poison. Moreover, it had to be taken during a growing moon, and to keep doing it until the end of life, or else you would die. Often women died of that poison.
- They used extract of belladonna as eye drops in order to achieve the effect of bright eyes with dilated pupils. But such procedures led to loss of vision.
Fortunately, the fashion for these unhealthy and strange “beauty” products has quickly passed.
Original ancient Russian methods of preserving youth and beauty are effective and safe.
To discover Russia with Alexey Gureev
pic: Kustodiev – Russian Venera