Although 1770 is given as the foundation date for the House of Yardley, the firm was actually established by Samuel Cleaver and it would be a new century before a Yardley owned the business.
Pond’s started out in 1846 as a patent medicine company when Theron T. Pond began selling ‘Golden Treasure’, a homeopathic remedy he had developed from witch hazel.
Robert Chesebrough began selling Vaseline Petroleum Jelly in 1870 but stores were largely disinterested in it until he began sending out employees with carts to hand out free samples.
In 1870, Aurelius Stone Hinds went into business for himself and a few years later he developed Hinds’ Honey and Almond Cream.
Richard Hudnut regarded himself as a high-class perfumer rather than a pharmacist or cosmetic chemist and looked to France for inspiration.
In 1886, Harriet Hubbard Ayer founded the Recamier Manufacturing Company. The company’s product range addressed most of the beauty concerns of the day.
In 1895, Jeannette Scalé opened a small beauty business in Chancery Lane, London, using the name Mrs. Pomeroy. The following year, Mrs. Pomeroy Ltd. was founded.
In 1896, Mrs. Frances Hemming opened an establishment in a converted front room of a house at 58 South Molton Street, London, to discretely sell beauty products.
Eleanor Adair was born in Ireland in 1867 and from 1900 opened salons in London, Paris, New York and elsewhere. She also introduced Elizabeth Arden to the beauty business.
In 1901, Fred W. Srecher registered the name Pompeian Massage Cream and Skin Food for a cream he had spent many months formulating. It became the best-selling face cream in the United States.
Marie Earle operated salons in Liverpool and Manchester well before opening L’Institut de Marie Earle in Paris in 1909.
In its heyday there were over 5000 Marinello salons across the United States, bringing Beauty Culture to middle and small town America.
No other cosmetic company is as closely tied to the development of Hollywood as Max Factor. This Hollywood connection might explain why stories of his early life read like a film script.
In 1911, Northam Warren started a sideline to his new brokerage business, a liquid cuticle remover he called Cutex.
The rise of Maybelline from a small mail-order firm to a global cosmetics business is impressive. Its early fortunes were tied with the growing motion picture business in California.
By 1927, the Armand Company was the leading seller of face powder in the United States with an annual income larger than Elizabeth Arden or Helena Rubinstein at the time.
After moving to New York, Dorothy Gray worked for Elizabeth Arden as a treatment girl before opening her first New York salon on Fifty-Seventh Street in 1916.
Around 1920, a group of businessmen from Lowell, Massachusetts approached Helen Woodward about setting up a cosmetic company.
The Covermark line of cosmetics was developed because its founder, Lydia O’Leary, suffered from a large, raspberry-coloured birthmark that covered half of the left-hand side of her face.
Starting from modest beginnings selling nail polish, Revlon would become one of the largest cosmetics companies in the United States with a full range of cosmetics in its product line-up.
Founded in 1948 on a single product, a no-smear lipstick, the company had a meteoric rise in the United States in the 1950s due to extensive television advertising.