Maybelline is an American makeup brand sold everywhere in the world and current subsidiary of L´Oréal Paris. It was founded in 1915 by a 19-year old entrepreneur from Chicago, and it’s one of the world’s leading makeup brands nowadays. Here are seven little-known facts about the cosmetics company!
Number Seven: Name Origins
The French-sounding name is not really French. In fact, it’s not an existing word at all—it’s the combination of “Mabel” and “Vaseline.” Why? The founder caught his sister Mabel applying Vaseline and coal dust as mascara and the name just popped up in his head.
Number Six: Maybelline Invented Mascara
Mascara did not exist as such before T.L. Williams introduced it as part of his Maybelline cosmetics collection. He also coined the term “mascara,” which he borrowed from mascaro—a product used to darken men’s moustaches and eyebrows.
Number Five: Emphasis on Advertising
Maybelline’s product quality wasn’t the only reason behind the brand’s early success. William’s niece said that her “great-uncle wanted to be remembered as the king of advertising.”
Number Four: World’s Best-Selling Foundation
Maybelline’s Dream Matte Mouse has been the world’s best-selling foundation since 2004. It’s also one of the most praised low-budget cosmetic products.
Number Three: Maybelline Changed the Beauty Industry
Back in the early 20th century, eye makeup was only accessible to Hollywood stars. Maybelline changed the way makeup was marketed and consumed by taking it out of the big screen and into the real world. Williams borrowed $500 from his brother Noel and created his Lash-Brow-Ine, which was sold through the mail for 25 cents.
Number Two: Not So Lasting Lipstick
In 2012, a group of women sued Maybelline over false advertising. The women claimed that Maybelline’s Super Stay 10HR Stain Gloss and Super Stay 14HR Lipstick are “misleading, inaccurate and deceptive,” adding that they “wear off and fade after only a few hours of wear.” This already happened in 1986 when a woman sued the cosmetics giant because their waterproof mascara wasn’t really waterproof at all.
Number One: ‘Before and After’ Creators
Maybelline was the precursor of the highly popularized before and after ads. The brand slowly replaced Hollywood celebrities from their marketing campaigns with non-famous models in before and after shots of their products. This was their preferred advertising technique for many years. We hope you enjoyed the article!