Mirrors Archive

Vanity was born when the mirror was discovered. People (and especially women) were condemned for looking in the mirror, and accused of being sinful. But then the mirror altered the way we think about vanity altogether—forever changing the way we look at ourselves.

Those Deadly Little Mirrors

Chicago Tribune | September 8th, 1912

Women constantly walk into danger.

Accidents which are due to women’s passion for looking in mirrors in stores are slight compared with the ones which result from the use of the fascinating little hand mirror.


Little Aids for Vain Women

The Boston Globe  | January 16th, 1898

The portable mirror has come to woman’s aid. The blundering man who thinks that all this distracting loveliness is kept in place by the mere fact of some sort of unknown law of gravitation is mistaken, for, as usual where a woman’s wiles are concerned, it is the tiny, confidential mirror that does the deed.


The Vanity of Men

The Times  | October 15th, 1885

Eight Out of Every Ten Running Around with Mirrors in Their Pockets

“It don’t matter much how they look,” he said; “whether they are apes or Apollos, they want a pocket mirror all the same. They retire every hour or so to some secret place to admire themselves. Talk of the vanity of woman! Indeed! It pales, sire; it fades away into insignificance by comparison with the admiration the majority of men have for their own mugs.”


Spread of the Mania

The Nottinghamshire Guardian | August 10th, 1895

So far, the mirror mania was confined to the mashers only. The ladies had not yet arrived at the stage where such mirrorings can be done with calm superiority. But that period is now past. A glovemaker has to answer for it. He has invented and brought out at Berlin in enormous quantities as silk and cotton glove, into the palm of the left hand of which is worked, with wonderful technical skill, a mirror the size of half a crown. The “mirror-glove” is the sensation of the day in Continental masherdom just now.


Are Rock Island Women Vain?

The Rock Island Argus | May 19th, 1904

Elevator Boy Decides They Are

One of the operators in one of the elevators of this city states that if the women did not stop so frequently to admire themselves before the mirrors, he could make more trips a day and thus give better satisfaction to his patrons.

Not only this but arranging at the floor where they wanted to leave the elevator, they would detain it until they had finished their toilet and would then leave with the. air of independence as if the mirrors were placed in position for their special benefit and the elevators were no more than toilet rooms.


How to Achieve Beauty

The Anaconda Standard | November 19th, 1927

A Mirror in Every Room Is a Good Thing for Beauty

We often hear the complaint that women are too vain, but personally I believe that most women do not look in the mirror often enough. It is a good thing for every woman to be reminded all through the day of just how she looks, for always you have recognition of faults before you have correction.


In Praise of Hand Mirrors

The Wichita Beacon | July 26th, 1919

Contrary to its undeserved reputation as a symbol of vanity––the hand-mirror is, instead, an instrument of humility. The coifure and complexion which appeared so flawless under the flattering electric light beside the full length mirror in the dresser are shown at their true value by a session with the hand mirror in a window’s cold daylight. 


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