Trends & research

The famous donkey milk baths

Things can seem different than they really are!

Everyone has an ideal of beauty in mind. It is often said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But there is one famous person who is THE ideal beauty, particularly in the field of cosmetics: Cleopatra, the last queen of ancient Egypt, Pharaoh from 51 BC to 30 BC.

Her perfect beauty image and her dedication to personal care and cosmetics has survived for thousands of years. Her legendary donkey milk baths have even inspired Hollywood. In 1963, the big film star Elisabeth Taylor gave her an enchanting face on the world's film screens. And what is known as her favorite facial recipe is still used today: egg yolk, buttermilk, honey, silica and chamomile tea. Our story of the ideal beauty could end here, and this legend would live on, the myth remaining untouched. Yet a closer look at the history of cosmetics, personal care & co. shows...

…if what you have in mind is following the example of Queen Cleopatra taking donkey milk baths, milked from over 300 donkeys, you should click on one of our other articles about the world of Face Care.

Because if we really look back in time, it could be that this image of perfect beauty was actually something very different. At least in terms of outward appearance. There is no historical evidence that Cleopatra was actually a stunning beauty even if her flawless skin and perfect appearance is still imprinted in our memory.   

We can believe some of the stories told about beauty rituals, though. Yet it was probably not Cleopatra who wanted to preserve her beauty and youth by taking her famous donkey milk baths. More than likely, it was Poppaea Sabina, the second wife of the Roman emperor Nero (approx. 30/32 AD to 65 AD). However, she was not the person to be made known as the trendsetter. Instead, Cleopatra was handed this role.

What is undisputed is the effect Cleopatra had on people. Because of her charisma, intelligence and captivating presence, she made so much more of an impression on people than just being a pretty face - especially on men. She captured their eye and radiated power, perfection and beauty. So, whether there is evidence of how attractive she actually was, whether her face was considered beautiful or perhaps only plain, what is true is that whoever feels beautiful is beautiful. Whoever is self-confident and feels good, radiates beauty. 

P.S. The donkey’s milk baths shouldn’t be dismissed that quickly. Just because Cleopatra never took them doesn’t mean that they aren’t good for our well-being. Both on the outside and inside.