Applying kohl make-up around the eyes in Africa and Asia is inextricably connected with physical and magical protection of the wearer. The kohl will keep the eye clean, ward off flies and serve as sunglasses in the extreme climate of the desert. On the other hand, applying kohl will also magically protect the wearer against evil. For that quality newborn babies are almost immediately adorned with kohl. In ancient Egypt, as well as in modern Egypt, artefacts associated with kohl are highly valued and considered a crucial part of the domain of women.
The last few centuries, the tube-shaped containers of kohl in Egypt and Palestine were often incorporated in small textile pillows decorated with embroidery and beads. These pillows can be regarded as amulets themselves, sometimes containing fake containers, to avert malevolent influences on the kohl. The beadwork decorating the surface is often built up of netted beadwork or a tight fabric of brick stitched or woven pattern. The patterns show lozenge shapes or triangles. More information can be found on the Wearable Heritage website.
Also, information and examples of kohl containers can be found on the Pitt Rivers Website as well as on the British Museum Website.