ON THE RELATION OF HORMONES TO COSMETICS* By O. S. G•BBs, M.D. kI•hitehaven, Tenn. THIS PAPER cannot be nearly as complete nor erudite as I would wish, nor indeed as you deserve unfortunately circumstances were such that my notice was too short for its adequate preparation. One may derive a shadow of comfort from the fact that the potential field of discussion, namely, hor- mones in cosmetics, even in its primitive state of today is already so complex that only a small fraction could be handled in a short paper, and even that in a cursory fashion. Some years ago I gave a paper entitled "The Biology of Adver- tising." In this work I showed that advertising was a functional activity of living tissue ranking second only to the assimilation of food. Using a similar term to avoid the local connotation that has become associated with the word advertising, namely, "calling attention to--" one was able to show that Nature cannot distribute her products without calling attention to them. At least apparently she never does even after a hundred *Presented at the December 8, 1948, Meeting of The Society of Cosmetic Chem- ists in New York City. million years or so of practical experience. There are many im- portant and some quite amusing conclusions to be drawn from this study which served to arouse my increasing interest in the practical study of cosmetics. Rather natu- rally my angle of approach was that of a pharmacologist who, today, must be regarded as one who learns to master the normal chemical controls of the body and then by means of his drugs, synthetics, hor- mones, call them what you will, puts them under scientific exploitation. The age-old use of cosmetics was an empirical attempt of the human to do the same sort of thing, namely, increase her or his-biological func- tion of "calling attention to," or advertising her or his person. The greater bulk of these efforts even to the present time has been the surface application of various pig- ments and perfumes, which inci- dentally is a recognition that both play a normal role in the advertising function. However, fi'om the dim past come tales of other less successful but highly significant attempts to effect 215
216 JOURNAL OF THE SOCIETY OF COSMETIC CHEMISTS a further control by the internal use of so-called Love Philtre's. Some of these mixtures were some- what horrible to contemplate and probably many were effective only by some autohypnotic or suggestive process, if effective at all, but from these primitive experiments there is a gleam of sanity shining through the nightmare of dark horrors, namely, a dim recognition that a something existed inside the body that made it externally attractive. Today with our available knowledge that almost certainly all functions are subject to chemical controls, although we have not yet discov- ered all of them, we are aware that the manifold variations of the ad- vertising function largely come un- der the domination of the sterolic type of hormones, either directly or indirectly. However, it is also true that other chemical controls play a part in the total picture, among which must be added the general metabolic stimulator, thy- roid, and the pattern maker or, as Cushing termed it, the orchestra leader, pituitary. Moreover, we also know that differences of reaction in tissue derived from the same primitive layer to a single drug are largely quantitative in nature. Thus it follows that a drug, such as those very loosely called sex hormones, which normally produce marked changes in quite*widely distributed tissues, also can produce under favorable conditions, changes in the same general type of tissue almost anywhere. Now the most obvious features of the advertising function are to be associated with its external appear- ance, and as my time is most limited, I shall confine my few re- marks to these, with, however, the clear understanding that notable changes may be duplicated or even exaggerated in internal tissues de- prived from similar primitive layers. Moreover, that these changes are by no means confined to the repro- ductive tissues. Taking the known external or obvious changes that can be caused by the sterolic drugs, we find they fall into two major types: those associated with changes in the caliber of blood-vessels, usually associated with increased dilator activity and those associated with the growth stimulus of epithelial tissue, with its associated functions. One of these is of peculiar interest to t•s at this time, namely, the pig- mentation of the superficial areas. We must not forget that there are other important changes caused by appropriatehormonalstimulus. One of these of cosmetic interest is the curious thickening and binding down of the female skin leading to a more attractive type of rounded molding, especially of the arms and legs. Another is the specialized de- posits of fatty tissue also appar- ently designed largely to increase general attractiveness, although they may also function fbr shock- absorbing purposes. Such deposits fall under the domination in part of the pituitary gland, but whether directly or by way of some secondary
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