Hair care products fall in and out of vogue. A commonality among vintage shampoos is that they featured the most popular stars at the time in order to make a mark in the beauty products industry. In some cases, the success of the shampoo corresponds with the popularity of the celebrity currently endorsing it. Some shampoos of yesteryear fade into the background and become discontinued -- others remain in production long after their original debut. The nostalgia tied to these shampoos can sometimes be enough to keep the product selling.
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John Breck sought to solve hair problems in 1898, setting to work on creating a formula that could easily rinse out of hair. The website The Gloss notes that part of Breck's enthusiasm on this particular subject lied within the fact that he was 21 years old and already balding. He could not save his own hair, but he did manage to create Breck Shampoo. Breck was the first pH-balanced shampoo in addition to the first shampoo to have formulas for oily and dry hair. Breck became a popular hair care product, with marketing revolving around beautiful women with appealing hair known as Breck Girls. The campaign used faces such as Roma Whitney in 1937, to Brooke Shields. Breck remains in production as of 2010, where it can be found in Dollar Tree stores.
In 1947, consumer goods manufacturer Procter & Gamble Company developed Prell. Prell shampoo was a bright green colour and came in a tube. When first released, according to the "New York Times," Procter & Gamble marketed Prell as the first shampoo with surfactants meant to remove dirt and oil from hair. Prell sold well and remains in the top 25 shampoos sold in North America. In the 1980s, Procter & Gamble ran advertisements for Prell featuring Christie Brinkley. Procter & Gamble sold Prell to Prestige Brands, who then sold Prell to Ultimark Products. Ultimark continues production of Prell as of 2010. In 2010, it was announced that Brinkley's daughter Alexa Ray Joel would be featured as the new face of Prell shampoo.
Lustre Crème hit American markets in the mid-1940s. Colgate-Palmolive Company developed the shampoo and filed a trademark for it on March 8, 1945. The shampoo was quickly embraced by a large number of movie screen sirens. Women such as Marilyn Monroe, Natalie Wood and Betty Grable represented Lustre Crème. The formula, according to Retro Hairstyles, contained lanolin to keep hair shiny and well-moisturised. The shampoo became popular thanks to the famous faces paired with the brand. However, in 2004, Lustre Crème was discontinued.
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- The Gloss: The History of Breck Shampoo
- Smithsonian: Breck Girls
- The New York Times: Procter & Gamble Considers Selling Its Prell Brand
- New York Daily News: Alexa Ray Joel fills mom Christie Brinkley's shoes in new Prell shampoo commercial
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- Trademarkia: Lustre Creme