The science of beauty was well-known in ancient Greece and Rome. In the first beauty manual written by the Roman poet Ovid, the science of makeup was known. In ancient Greece, upper-class women would tint gray hair and smear wax on wrinkled skin. Some even had their eyebrows replaced with fur to look more beautiful. This practice continued even in the early Christian era, when women sought to imitate the appearance of their religious leaders.
Ancient treatments of beauty pay homage to the pleasures of beauty by describing the enjoyment of beauty in ecstatic terms. In the writings of Plotinus, the term beauty was accompanied by the words “wonderful trouble,” “love,” and “trembling.” In other words, Plotinus’ definition of beauty was characterized by its value, function, and loving attitude. All of these qualities make an object beautiful.
Today, beauty standards are complicated social constructs and are perpetuated through various forms of social status. Some scientists claim that beauty standards have arisen from evolution, but we can’t exclude the role of racism, capitalism, and the media in shaping the ideal of appearance. Advertising for beauty products has made beauty an individualistic concept that only benefits those with social power and capital. Thus, it is hardly surprising that beauty standards are so pervasive in modern society.
Plato and Aristotle differed in their definition of beauty. For them, beauty is a form of harmony that expresses mathematical ratios and is considered to be beautiful. Sculptures such as ‘The Canon’ by Polykleitos are also considered to be beautiful. However, it is important to note that beauty is subjective and can be interpreted in different ways. Ultimately, the beauty of an object depends on the individual’s own taste and aesthetics.