How to Be Pretty Though Plain
Distributed for British Library
Presented here in a facsimile edition, How to Be Pretty offers an array of advice, from tips on cosmetics to more wide-ranging suggestions on lifestyle and habits. A suggestion that ladies brush “the eyebrows and eyelashes every morning with a solution of green tea” sits alongside a surprisingly modern take on the benefits of sleep, exercise, and fresh air, while a recipe for myrrh-and-borax tooth powder reminds us that keeping the pearlies white has long been an obsession. As interesting—and amusing—for its social history as for the breezy, common-sense tone of its advice, How to Be Pretty Though Plain is a celebration of the enduring preoccupation with looking one’s best.