The medieval skincare routine according to the formulations of Madgistra Trotula and the Medical School of Salerno and its reflection on cosmetology of the third millennium

The aim of this work was to make a critical comparison between medieval and modern dermo-cosmetics analyzing the works of Trotula de Ruggiero, a female doctor of the 11th-century teaching and working inside the illustrious “Medical School of Salerno,” who devoted particular attention to the promotion of female care, beauty, and well-being. We applied the historical-critical method analyzing the Latin text and the English translation of the standardized corpus of the main Trotula medieval manuscript De Ornatu Mulierum with a multidisciplinary scientific approach ranging from botany to pharmaceutical chemistry and technology, pharmacology and pathology. We identified the medicinal plants, derivatives of animal origin and minerals used in the recipes of Trotula, highlighting their biological properties in the light of current scientific knowledge. A critical comparison between medieval and modern dermo-cosmetics is reported, considering the chemical, pharmaceutical, and technological literature. Beyond the obvious changes in the paradigms of cosmetology and the different beauty canons of the Middle Age with respect to modern times, our results emphasize the attention of Trotula to female care, beauty and well-being, and the extraordinary combination of tradition and modernity in her work.

Authors : Pisanti, S., Mencherini, T., Esposito, T., D’Amato, V., Re, T., Bifulco, M., & Aquino, R. P.
Article: The medieval skincare routine according to the formulations of Madgistra Trotula and the Medical School of Salerno and its reflection on cosmetology of the third millennium. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology. 2022.
Doi: https://doi.org/10.1111/jocd.15234

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