June 04, 2008

I'm not addicted to drugs, I'm addicted to glamour

Leonard, coiffeur to the Queen knew how to make a hair doo a hit. Marie wore his creations as the forefront of fashion. His materials were horse hair and gauze, decor, pomade and powder. He was absolutely full of himself. I guess I couldn't be too blunt with that. All one had to do to arrange a meeting with Leonard was to tell him that they admired his fine work. He was self proclaimed,
"Academician of coiffures and fashion."
He rarely paid off accounts to other merchants, and if bothered by them would exclaim, "Later, Later!" or send around a boy to deal with them.

A week after Marie had given birth to her first child, Marie-Therese de France, December 18, 1778, she called Leonard, in urgency, because she noticed her hair was falling out! He agreed to help the new mother. Every day he would treat her scalp in effort to restore her hair.

Leonard, panicky, began to go to perfumers to see if there was anything to prevent hair loss. He received several oils that were suppose to have restoration effects.  After 18 months of treatments the situation had not been resolved!


Marie was still losing her hair and to say the least Leonard was
alarmed. In a desperate attempt, Leonard received (by help of the Queens perfumer) a pomade of jasmine, tuberose, citron & jonquil. Amazingly her hair stopped falling out!

But damage had been done, she had lost a good portion of her hair. He delicately suggested that she adapt a new style he created solely for her majesty. The coiffure a l'enfant. The thought of cutting her hair so short horrified the Queen, but she let Leonard do it anyway. And a new fashion was born!


For more information on Marie Antoinette's perfumer check out: A Scented Palace: The Secret History of Marie Antoinette's Perfumer 

3 comments

  1. Oh is that how they began styling the hair out instead of up?

    ReplyDelete
  2. I must figure out how it was spread to England....or by who...

    ReplyDelete