The New Kingdom Period was an especially prosperous period of Egypt’s history, and it marked the pinnacle of Egyptian power. Alabaster was a fairly precious and sought-after material, suggesting that this jar had a wealthy owner. A range of alabaster goods were produced during the New Kingdom, cosmetic jars in particular, which served to reflect the relative wealth of the era.
The Egyptian Book of the Dead states in spell 125 that one should not speak unless “clean, dressed in fresh clothes, shod in white sandals, painted with eye-paint, anointed with the finest oil of myrrh”. Cosmetics were a large industry in Ancient Egypt, being produced professionally and sold in the market place. The Egyptians had recipes for many modern day toiletries, including toothpaste, deodorant, sun cream, cosmetics, and perfume. Toothpaste, for instance, was originally a powder into which a wet, wooden brush was dipped.