Nature is the greatest teacher, and humans have been excellent students. It shows us things that we could never imagine and inspires us to create. Inventions like water-repellent glass, nanofibres, and even mirrors are some examples of our brilliant and successful attempts at mimicking nature. For ages, humans have been manifesting inspiration into useful products.
Here we are going to talk about vanity mirrors. Yet, before we start, it seems fitting to dig into the history of mirrors. The looking glass is a thing worth discussion for the fact that it has a lot to do with the way we see things and ourselves now.
The History of Mirrors
Sometimes ages after the big bang, during early human existence, someone saw a reflection in the waters of a tranquil lake. Back then, this human (along with others from the clan) must have mistaken the refection for God or Satan. Or maybe a friend who only visits at the lake!
Thanks to the power of contemplation and intellect, humans were able to figure out that the reflections in water belonged to them. Soon, people began to carve mirrors out of polished obsidian. Later, during the middle-age mirrors made in bronze, copper, silver, and gold began to gain popularity among the royals.
The mirrors at that point of time were mostly eight to ten inches in diameter, for more giant mirrors were bulky. Among the few places that exhibited giant mirrors was Pharos of Alexandria, Egypt. In the year 1835, Justus Von Liebig, a German Chemist, developed the process of coating glass with a layer of silver to make the first silver-polished mirror.
Reflections of New Beginnings
The advent of contemporary mirrors changed society in many ways. The significant impact of mirrors on people was a newfound sense of individuality. For the first time in forever, people could see clear self refections, they could notice the difference in appearances and body features. People could see themselves better and connect to the self.
It was time that new art forms emerged, and so they did. Self-portraits became a popular art form, and first-person novels became a thing. In the year 1712, mirrors made their way into optical devices when James Bradley invented the first reflective telescope.
The Vanity Mirror
Everything that exists, affects us in vivid ways that are sometimes above and beyond our understanding. The fact that a mirror is a useful thing could, yet, not assimilate in a few obnoxious minds. There were and still are some societies, groups, and individuals that oppose the use of mirrors.
The arguments suggested that mirrors promote vanity and narcissism. Some hyper-imaginative humans also claim that we can apprehend the Bloody Marry (or an even scarier spirit) by calling on it three times while standing in front of a mirror. Seriously?
Before the mirror, people knew little about their looks. Clear reflections of self have been helping humankind by allowing us to see the details of our existence and become more self-aware. For those who face social anxieties, being able to see a clear reflection of self is the first step towards becoming less socially awkward.
Consider that you had one, two … many shots at the club the other day. (Imagine, even if you don’t drink, Please!) Everything around you seems blurry, that’s when you realize that it’s time to head home. Before leaving, you enter the bathroom to make a final check.
You look at the mirror and think, “I look fine, awesome! Let’s go!”
See, that’s the mirror effect. It ensures that you feel that everything’s okay!
What good change did the invention of a mirror bring to the world may sound trivial to some, yet it is essential. Mirrors help people put on perfect makeup and dress better. People find it easy to overcome social anxieties by accepting and admiring the reflection.
‘A Mirror Never Lies.’ Or Does it?
Humans are amazing, for we continue innovating the stuff that exists! The mirror has gone through a lot of changes over the years. From silver to tin and aluminum, mirror makers now use cost-effective materials as reflective layers in modern mirrors. There is a plethora of designs and styles of mirrors available in the market. From ornamental mirrors to large gym mirrors, we have figured out a million ways to use the mirror.
Every household has at least one mirror. You sit in front of the mirror to get ready for the day, and you do it every day. Until one day when you have to clean the mirror, duh! You forget about the world and dedicate an hour to wipe the mirror clean, regardless, it’s not your favorite thing to do.
Then some noticed the frustration that comes with dirty, water-stained mirrors. People realized that no matter how beautiful a mirror is, it won’t render crisp reflections under poor lighting. Makeup enthusiasts started installing light bulbs on the periphery of their mirror’s frame. Well-lit mirrors helped them see even better.
The fallacy that mirrors to induce vanity went into gutters with the inception of vanity mirrors. Present-day vanity mirrors come with LED light fixtures. They are better than the traditional mirrors, as they help render more crisp reflections. No wonder these mirrors are now available at reasonable prices, unlike the first mirrors that only the royals could access. Or the vanity mirrors that were a hype among celebrities. Anyone who understands the importance of lighting knows that better lights help render true reflections with accurate colors!
The Mirror isn’t on the Wall
From river to LED vanity mirrors, we have come a long way since we first saw our reflections. Today, there are several kinds of mirrors that you can choose from various areas of your home. Some mirrors decorate a space while others do what a simple mirror does; they reflect!
Mirrors are everywhere, in the washrooms, in the makeup room, at receptions, women handbags, and even in space. Don’t get taken aback by surprise if you hear that there’s a mirror that helps you stay fit and active, for it does! The mirror may not be on the wall; nonetheless, it will speak to you, in case you wish!