Beauty Products That Changed The World

The average beauty routine is pretty … well, routine. We cleanse our skin, apply makeup, do our hair, spritz on perfume and we’re out the door. Not much to really think about, right? But did you know some of the products you use in your everyday routine carry real, historic significance and may have even revolutionized the world of beauty?

Read on to learn how some of the classic beauty products you probably use every day changed the world.


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Clinique Three-Step Skin Care System

The average modern skin care routine is necessarily complex and accompanied by various steps. It wasn’t always that way, though. Washing one’s face used to be considered the only real necessity. That is until Clinique’s multi-step skin care system was first presented to the world in 1968 via an article in Vogue magazine. The three-parter was the first of its kind to go above and beyond the average skin care routine of simply washing one’s face. Clinique’s revolutionary package utilized multiple steps: exfoliating, cleansing and moisturizing to ensure the best complexion possible. In 1978, the company extended its marketing to men, revealing a skin care line for men. Business is booming more than ever, with Clinique stores currently operating in a staggering 138 nations across the globe.

L’Oreal Elnett Hairspray

In the old days, hairspray was as tough as nails. It was well-known for being thick and impossible to comb through until L’Oreal unveiled its Elnett Hairspray in 1960. This was the first hairspray of its kind made to brush out effortlessly. Swiftly becoming a beauty product mainstay, the legendary gold coloring of the Elnett’s spray can was introduced in 1963, and the iconic female face on the can was introduced in 1964. Both classics remain to this day. Hairdressers used to have to travel to Europe to buy this revolutionary hairspray in bulk until 2010, when it finally became commercially available outside of the European region.

Chanel No. 5

Ah, the timeless scent of Chanel No. 5. This powerhouse perfume, which is arguably the most famous product to ever come out of the historic Chanel brand, had very humble beginnings. It was created in 1921, early in the company’s history, by Coco Chanel herself. She invited a few of her friends to a restaurant and sprayed them with the newly cultivated scent. Passersby who caught a whiff asked Chanel where they could purchase the perfume, and she told them the name and where to buy it. The scent eventually became so popular that famous pop artist Andy Warhol was commissioned to create a series of screen prints of the famous perfume bottle in the 1960s.

Maybelline Great Lash Mascara

It seems that every woman in America has a tube of this popular mascara in her makeup bag. It’s funny to think, then, that it was only introduced in 1971 and was the first mascara to be sold in its own tube with a brush included. Maybelline’s historic product was also, interestingly, one of the first water-based mascaras, making it much easier to remove than its clingy competitors. Still sold in its original pink tube and green cap, Maybelline Great Lash Mascara is still, to this day, the best-selling mascara on the market.

Dove Beauty Bar

The Dove Beauty Bar is an essential item when it comes to skin care. Originally referred to as Product X, it was first created in 1953. This unique beauty bar offered a revolutionary formula of one-fourth cleansing cream, ensuring it wouldn’t dry out skin or cause irritation like regular soap. Dove has also always been progressive with its ad campaigns, using testimonials of real women for its products’ ads, and it maintains this focus on real women and real beauty to this day.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream

This incredibly popular cream was created by Elizabeth Arden in 1930 and was the first cosmetic product to bear Arden’s name. Its self-explanatory title is said to have come from a customer of Arden’s who claimed the cream helped completely heal her son’s knee in a mere eight hours. This urban legend lends credence to the fact that Arden’s product is often referred to as a “miracle cream”. Over the years, it has accumulated a near cult-like following, with many customers purchasing it in bulk.

Noxzema Cleansing Cream

Teens of the 1990s will probably remember those famous Noxzema commercials that seemed to air on television every other minute. The product’s popularity is practically a cultural touchstone at this point, but little do people know that it was originally created all the way back in 1914 and initially marketed as a sunburn remedy. It was also marketed as a remedy for eczema, which is where its name is derived from, and was once branded under the slogan, “The Miracle Cream of Baltimore.” The cleansing cream’s popularity grew immensely in the 1940s due to radio advertising. It was especially a hit with teenagers and, of course, still is today.


About the Author

Jeff Chiarelli
Jeff Chiarelli is the Head of Marketing for Ogle School. His responsibilities include leading Ogle School's marketing and branding strategy to amplify Ogle School's passion for helping create future beauty professionals in the communities Ogle School serves.