Our 2014 Easter trail for Kensington Palace was inspired by the crazy beauty regimes of Georgian nobility. Six old mirror frames were upcycled to help educate visitors on how they would have been expected to prepare themselves for a visit to the Court of King George II and Queen Caroline.

Make up to die for
How do you look? Three hundred years ago both men and women wore make up to Court. You would wear a base of goose fat and then white lead oxide powder. The powder was poisonous and people became ill and died from using it.  

Not a patch on you
What can you spot? Patches of silk, velvet or fine leather were glued onto your face to hide smallpox scars and other blemishes. Beauty spots could be many shapes - heart, oval, star, half-moon, or even a coach and horse. What shape would you wear?

Hair today, gone tomorrow
Thick eyebrows were fashionable; for those whose own were lacking, mouse fur was used to make a fake pair! The mouse-skin eye-brows
would be pasted on with an ineffective fish-glue. Be careful they don’t fall off in to your hot chocolate!

Ever had a bad hair day?
Courtiers would strap big wigs made from human or horse-hair to their heads. The outlandish wigs, powdered with starch, were difficult to keep clean and became rather itchy - insects were found to live in them!

Who’s your biggest fan?
A fan was an essential, cooling accessory for a lady in a crowded ballroom and could be used to send secret messages to admirers. What message would you send? Fans were also helpful to hide missing and rotting black teeth caused by poor dental hygiene.

Did you get the point?
Where would you wear this sword? Aristocrats would wear a court sword to signify status – no gentleman was dressed without his sword! But duels took place outside the Palace, Hyde Park being a popular dueling ground.

Kensington Palace is open 10-18 daily, entrance fee is £14.50 for adults, £12.00 concessions, kids go free.

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