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Camay Soap History

Updated March 23, 2017

On October 31, 1837, William Procter from England and James Gamble from Ireland, founded Procter & Gamble in Cincinnati, Ohio. Procter was a candle maker and Gamble was a soap maker. They had married two sisters, Olivia and Elizabeth Norris, whose father persuaded them to become business partners. When they launched their sales of candles and soap in 1837, they had 14 marketplace competitors. But by 1859, Procter & Gamble achieved £0.6 million in sales. Camay Soap was one among a long line of products made by Procter & Gamble, and one of more than 30 different types of soap.

Camay Soap Launched

In 1924, Procter & Gamble established a market research department to study consumer trends. At the time, there was growing demand for perfumed soap. The company introduced Camay Soap in 1926. Camay was the company's response to consumer demand.

Brand Management

In 1931, a Procter & Gamble executive named Neil McElroy had been assigned to handle advertising for Camay Soap. McElroy wrote a memorandum outlining the need for what became brand management, whereby individual Procter & Gamble products would be distinguished from one another for marketing purposes. At the time, Ivory Soap was the company's flagship brand.

Advertising

Over the years, Camay Soap was the subject of numerous print ads and also had several famous advertising slogans, two of which were "You are in a beauty contest every day of your life" and "You'll be lovelier each day, with fabulous pink Camay."

Camay Brides

Camay Soap was promoted through advertisements featuring real-life brides called "Camay Brides." The ads showed the brides in their wedding gowns. The point of the ads was to suggest that Camay Soap made them "lovelier every day." A 1938 bride named Jeanne Hines recalled receiving 60p and a box of Camay Soap in payment for her endorsement.

Global Success Story

Camay Soap became a global success for Procter & Gamble, selling in more than 60 countries throughout the world. Camay Soap was launched in the United Kingdom in 1958 and was the first brand launched by Procter & Gamble Egypt in 1986.

Online Sales

In the United States, both the pink and white versions of Camay Soap may be purchased through online stores.

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About the Author

Based in Northern California, Maureen Katemopoulos has been a freelance writer for more than 25 years. Her articles on travel, the arts, cuisine and history have appeared in publications such as "Stanislaus Magazine," "Orientations," "The Asia Magazine" and "The Peninsula Group Magazine." She holds a Baccalaureate degree in journalism from Stanford University.