Wellbeing in our lives
Defining wellbeing brings us to the core of an intimate connection, on the one hand between the individual and their body; and on the other hand, a connection between the individual, their spirit and their relationship to others. Commonly defined as “a pleasant state resulting from the satisfaction of the body’s needs and the tranquillity of the spirit”, wellbeing refers to both biological and social dimensions of human life.
Indeed, there are several facets to the search of wellbeing. The first one is related to the maintenance of our “body heritage”, comprising all aspects of the satisfaction of its needs: hygiene, comfort and health. The second one is linked to the social dimension of human beings. By allowing us to take care of our body and by enhancing our confidence and self-esteem, perfumes, skin care, beauty and toiletry products… fully contribute to our wellbeing.
All civilisations have had washing, perfuming, hair styling, embellishing…rituals. Each era has had its fashion, its codes and recipes. For example, the pre-historical man used « foundation » thanks to rush tubes containing an ochre-coloured paste. And the first texts written on beauty and personal care products date back to Antiquity. According to historian Herodotus, the most ancient beauty recipe is said to date back to around 3,000 B.C, when Egyptian Queen Atsositou applied a paste on her face to relax the skin. Besides, the famous “Boudoir’s Pharmacy” tablets tell us about Queen Cleopatra, who used to bathe in donkey’s milk. Ancient Greece, Rome, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance or even the modern era were the theatre of many other usages that highlight a common practice in Human history: far from being vain, taking care of one’s body and its appearance has been a universal concern, a prerequisite to wellbeing.
This quest is very common in our society. Actually, the WHO itself has recognised that wellbeing is a health factor, as stated in the Preamble of its Constitution, in 1946: “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity ». Our behaviour, our health practices and our own choices have a direct impact on our health, our condition, and our comfort, hence our wellbeing.
The quest for wellbeing is only the natural extension of a story that started at the origin of humanity. The search for balance and harmony between body and mind is more than ever at the heart of our lives.