BATH; SULPHUR-BATH, ARTIFICIAL.
BEARD.—The hair on the cheeks, chin, and upper lip (moustache). The growth of the beard,.as well as that of hair in other parts, depends on the development of these structures from the hair-follicles, which also determine the general character and colour of the Form, distribution, length, the softness, curliness, and thickness, vary in races or families, just as does the colour. The appearance of the hirsute growth on the chin, lips, and cheeks is an accompaniment of complete sexual development in man. In women this condition must be looked upon as a deviation from the feminine type. Although considered an ornament in men, it is deemed an ugly feature in women. It must be evident that a full beard, unless it is extremely well taken care of, interferes with perfect cleanliness and a person who insists upon retaining this growth as an adornment ought to realise that it demands his especial care in this respect. The care of the beard includes frequent washing with soap (preferably that known as lanoline soap), thorough dry ing, and the application of a moderate amount of some simple pomade which does not decompose. The ordinary pomades which have lard or beef-fat as their basis should he avoided, as they readily become rancid and give rise to irritating, fatty acids. Those prepared with a lanoline or vaseline base are preferable.
Excess as well as deficiency of fat interferes with the growth of the hair and beard, and moderation in the application of these toilet accessories should be exercised. Alcoholic hair-lotions, which may be applied about twice a week, serve to remove the fatty materials which have accumulated, and also to cleanse the underlying skin. One of the best preparations for this purpose is the well-known eau-de-Cologne, which is to he applied with a linen rag, the skin afterwards to be rubbed with a dry cloth until evaporation is complete. Frequent combing has a cleansing effect, and, by acting as a massage, it stimulates the growth of the hair. One of the best hair tonics is a very thin alcoholic or fatty solution of wax. The various adhesive preparations which have been recommended are to be zealously avoided, as the rubber which they usually contain readily disintegrates, thus affording a good culture medium for bacteria. Frequent singeing of
the hair is harmful unless the hair has first been thoroughly greased. Other wise it tends to make the hair brittle, dry, and liable to split at the ends. Whenever the latter condition occurs it is safe to say that the hair is too long, and it should be kept cut sufficiently short to prevent this taking place. There is no doubt that frequent cutting or shaving will cause the hair to grow more thickly, but it does not promote a long growth. he heard should be trimmed in such a manner that the lips are left free, and straggling hairs should be brought back into place by the aid of the curling-iron. Disinfecting remedies containing carbolic acid or corrosive sublimate sly mid never be used, as they cause the hair to break off. Of all the additions to pomades, tannic acid in halt per cent. solution is the best.
A perfectly satisfactory remedy for removing a heard from the face of a woman, without producing scars, is not available. It is possible to bring about a falling-out of the hair-shafts by the application of mixtures containing chloride of lime. or sulphide of arsenic, but this does not inhibit future growth from the unaffected follicle. These radical cures must, therefore, be constantly repeated. Moreover, they should be resorted to only under medical supervision ; otherwise the. cauterising process may extend and form deep ulcers. Regular shaving merely stimulates renewed growth, and does not prevent the discoloration produced by the ends of the hair-shafts remaining in the skin. The systematic extraction of the hair with an epilation-forceps is the only reliable, though somewhat painful, remedy. Certain physicians have recommended destroying each individual hair-follicle by means of a fine platinum wire, which is rendered red-hot by the electric current and then plunged into the follicle. The resulting scars are too small to be very much in evidence. This method must be employed in obstinate cases. Whether the destruction of the hair-follicles by means of the X-rays, as observed under other circumstances, can be made of practical value, has not vet been made the subj ect of practical tests.