Tag Archives: Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery Ancient Egypt

Ancient Egypt: Cosmetic Tools

22 Feb

Last weekend I had the pleasure of visiting the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, a stunning building situated in the west end of Glasgow. The museum is filled with a vast array of fascinating objects, from dinosaur skeletons to Victorian dresses, and is truly a wonderful place to visit.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum (image: edwud.com)

Being a makeup nerd, my favourite part had to be the section dedicated to Ancient Egypt. I entered the room hoping to come across some information on Egyptian cosmetics, but what I found by far exceeded my expectations.

After I’d finished gawping at a bandaged corpse and gigantic stone sarcophagus, I stumbled upon a glass cabinet displaying a range of ancient beauty tools – some of which were over 4000 years old. Awesome.

The collection of dainty artifacts included eyeliner pots, a cosmetic palette and even a hand-held mirror (looks like humanity’s been vain for quite some time).

The display really is a must-see for any makeup fanatic, but for those of you who may not get the chance to visit the museum, here are some snaps!

1. Mirror with papyrus-shaped handle, Middle Kingdom, 2055-1650 BCE, Copper alloy and wood (given By Egyptian Research Students’ Association [Glasgow Branch] 1923).

1. Mirror with papyrus-shaped handle, Middle Kingdom, 2055-1650 BCE, Copper alloy and wood (given By Egyptian Research Students' Association [Glasgow Branch] 1923).

Mirror with papyrus-shaped handle, 2055-1650 BCE (image: Kelvingrove Museum)

2. Eye-paint pot and lid, Middle Kingdom, 2055 – 1650 BCE, travertine (given by the Egypt Exploration Fund, 1899).

Eye-paint Pot and Lid, Middle Kingdom, 2055 - 1650 BCE, Travertine (Given by the Egypt Exploration Fund, 1899).

Eye-paint Pot and Lid, 2055 - 1650 BCE (image: Kelvingrove Museum)

3. Eye-Paint pot held by a girl, New Kingdom, 1550-1069 BCE, steatite (loaned by British Museum) and eye paint stick, Late Period, 747 – 332 BCE, hematite (loaned by Miss J May Buchanan).

Eye-paint pot held by a girl, New Kingdom, 1550-1069 BCE, Steatite, Loaned by British Museum

Eye-Paint Pot held by a Girl, 1550-1069 BCE and Eye Paint Stick, 747 - 332 BCE (image: Kelvingrove Museum)

4. Eye-paint pot held by an ape, 18th dynasty, 1550-1295 BCE, Steatite (given by John Martin 1911).

Eye-paint pot held by an ape, 18th dynasty, 1550-1295 BCE, Steatite, Given by John Martin 1911

Eye-paint pot held by an ape, 1550-1295 BCE (image: Kelvingrove Museum)

5. Eye-paint pot, Third Intermediate Period, 1069-747 BCE, glazed composition. 

Eye-paint Pot, Third Intermediate Period, 1069-747 BCE, Glazed Composition.

Eye-paint pot, 1069-747 BCE, Glazed composition (image: Kelvingrove museum)

6. Cosmetic palette, Roman Period, 30 BCE – 395 CE, Slate (given by the Egypt Exploration Fund).

Cosmetic palette, Roman Period, 30 BCE - 395 CE

Cosmetic palette, 30 BCE - 395 CE (image: Kelvingrove Museum)

Note: Thanks to Kelvingrove Museum for allowing me to take pictures of the collection.

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