By Mark McConville
BRITONS may not always have had Botox but that has not stopped the long-standing love affair with the beauty parlour as revealed in a series of stunning retro pictures from the Swinging Sixties.
The incredible images show women in the 1960s chatting to each other as they have their hair done, wearing cucumber face masks and have a full body wrap in their quest for beauty.
Other remarkable photos show women taking part experimental treatment including an electric face mask, hot wax being applied to help sweat weight off and ultra-violet treatment.
A beauty parlour is an establishment that deals with cosmetic treatments for both men and women. There is a distinction between a beauty salon and a hair salon and although many small businesses do offer both sets of treatments; beauty salons provide extended services related to skin health, facial aesthetic, foot care, nail manicures, aromatherapy, — even meditation, oxygen therapy, mud baths, and many other services.
In the 1950s, with the advent of colour film, the beauty industry got a colourful make-over with bright rouges all the rage. With men returning from war and the resulting baby boom, all emphasis was on family life. Women came back from work and resigned to life as housewives. With so much time on their hands, they spent a lot of time pampering themselves to look glamorous.
In the Sixties our idea of beauty was transformed by the introduction of the mini-skirt, bikinis, and by style-icons such as Twiggy, who se the standard for later models with her skinny and androgynous look.
These days, massage for the body is a popular beauty treatment, with various techniques offering benefits to the skin (including the application of beauty products) and for increasing mental well-being. Hair removal is offered at some beauty salons through treatments such as waxing and threading.
Some beauty salons style hair instead of going to a separate hair salon, and some also offer sun tanning. Other treatments of the face are known as facials.
Specialised beauty salons known as nail salons offer treatments such as manicures and pedicures for the nails. A manicure is a treatment for the hands, incorporating the fingernails and cuticles and often involving the application of nail polish, while a pedicure involves treatment of the feet, incorporating the toenails and the softening or removal of calluses.
The UK beauty industry is worth £17 billion and employs around one million workers nationwide, making it one of the most lucrative industries in the country.