Stories from the history and science of cosmetics, skin-care and early Beauty Culture.

Recent Stories

Powder Creams


Face creams coloured with powdered pigments could help even out a complexion while holding face powder in place.

Harriet Hubbard Ayer


Vincent Benjamin Thomas founded Harriet Hubbard Ayer in 1907 after he purchased the name from Harriet’s daughter Margaret.

Harriet Hubbard Ayer (post 1947)


One year after being made the new president of Lever Brothers, Charles Luckman acquired Harriet Hubbard Ayer. This decision, combined with others, would lead to conflict with Lever Brothers’ parent company, Unilever.



Concealers developed from camouflage make-up, both of which had their origins in the 1930s.

Cover Girl


In 1961, the Noxzema Chemical Company started its Cover Girl line with just two products, a liquid foundation and a pressed powder.

Revlon (post-1960)


Revlon had bested its two main rivals in the lipstick wars of the 1950s but the 1960s introduced new competitors for Charles Revson to worry about.

Max Factor (post-1945)


In the years that followed the Second World War the Max Factor company expanded its global reach.

Prince Matchabelli


In 1926, Prince Georges Matchabelli borrowed four thousand dollars and together with Princess Norina established the Prince Matchabelli Perfumery Company.


Booklet Updates

A Woman’s Secrets

Added: 17th April 2016

Story Updates

Pan-Cake Make-up

Updated: 14th April 2016

Cosmetics Timeline

Updated: 8th April 2016

Company Timeline

Updated: 8th April 2016


Updated: 17th March 2016


Updated: 1st March 2016


Updated: 9th February 2016 [Major]

Iontophoresis and Desincrustation

Updated: 29th January 2016

X-rays and Hair Removal

Updated: 12th January 2016 [Major]


Popular Stories

  1. Iontophoresis and Desincrustation
  2. Pan-Cake Make-up
  3. Vanishing Creams
  4. Cold Creams
  5. High Frequency
  6. Max and the tube
  7. What is a cosmetic?
  8. Hazeline Snow
  9. Straps, Bandages and Tapes
  10. Petrolatum/Petroleum Jelly


Books, journals, websites and other sources.

Contact Me

I am based in Perth, Western Australia. You can contact me by Email or follow me on Twitter to receive information about new stories and updates. I am always keen to hear from others interested in this area. Thanks to everyone who has already been in touch.