Ninety plus years ago Pond’s Extract Company took endorsements to a new level—probably never surpassed!
“Women of royal blood, of noble birth, of high position” endorsed Ponds Cold Cream and Pond’s Vanishing Cream.
We’ll never know the story behind this 1920’s advertising campaign which featured reigning queens, princesses, noblewomen, and society leaders.
Who persuaded those women to lend their names and their images to the promotion of a face-cleansing product? Were they paid? In cash or in kind? How much? Different amounts consistent with their standing in the world? Did they have business agents?
This full page advertisement appeared in McCall’s Magazine, November 1926.
What did they have to say about Pond’s Cold Cream and Pond’s Vanishing Cream?
Her Majesty, the Queen of Romania, granddaughter of Queen Victoria, stateswoman, author, beautiful and stately says: “Beauty can be thoroughly guarded by the daily use of Pond’s Two Creams.”
Her Majesty, the Queen of Spain had actually nothing to say about the product but she “signified her pleasure in Pond’s Two Creams.” Apparently she was “the embodiment of queenly majesty and beauty—tall, fair, distinguished in dress and bearing.”
The Duchess De Richelieu of a prominent Baltimore family and wife of one of the noblest old houses in France says: “Pond’s Creams keep the skin exquisitely soft and lovely.”
And what does Mrs. Nicholas Longworth have to say about Ponds Two Creams? She was the wife of the speaker of the United States House of Representatives and daughter of the late President Roosevelt. She declared: “A clear skin may be surely had by the use of Pond’s.”
Look now to the younger set. Miss Elinor Patterson, debutante daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Medill Patterson of Chicago, who created a furore [sic] as “The Nun” in “The Miracle,” says: “Ponds Two Creams are so fragrant and pleasant of texture, so sure in fulfillment.”
Miss Marjorie Olrichs, New York debutante, connected with several of New York’s oldest families, and a chic and charming person, says: “Pond’s is the method I follow.”
Her Majesty, Marie, Queen of Romania
was featured in this advertisement
Queen Marie, also known as Marie of Edinburgh, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria, was the last Queen of Romania as the wife of King Ferdinand I.
Even before becoming Queen, Marie had succeeded in establishing her public image as that of “one of the best-looking and richest princesses in Europe.”
She was known primarily for her talent in horse-riding, writing, painting, sculpting and dancing, as well as for her beauty.
The information below the painting reads:
No royal guest who has ever visited America has been so widely acclaimed as Queen Marie.
Youth is hers—and great vitality, in spite of years crowded with strenuous activity. She has beautiful skin—unlined, firm fresh, with lovely natural colour! A skin which speaks for itself of the wise care Her Majesty has always given it.
Over two year ago, Her Majesty, writing from Bucharest, was pleased to permit Pond’s Extract Company to quote her words expressing her faith in the efficacy of Pond’s Two Creams.
A subsequent letter, written in February, 1925, says: “Her Majesty wishes me to repeat, as to Pond’s Cream, it gives her daily greater satisfaction.”
This full page advertisement appeared in
McCall’s Magazine, January, 1927
Here is a second portrait of Queen Marie painted in 1936 by Philip Alexius de László
The portrait painter of Queen Marie in the advertisement above was Philip Alexius de László, an Anglo-Hungarian painter known particularly for his portraits of royal and aristocratic personages (the list is too long to publish here).
In 1900, László married Lucy Madeleine Guinness of Stillorgan, County Dublin, a member of the banking branch of the Guinness family and a sister of Henry Guinness.
Oh, the toll the Social Calendar takes on beauty. Ponds two creams to the rescue.
You won’t believe this.
The Social Calendar scribbled full! The shining hours of every day fitted together like gay mosaics in a brilliant pattern of pleasure. Dashing from shops to luncheon; on to tea; a reception; then dinner and the opera without an instant’s rest. After the opera, supper and a dance.
It takes its toll of beauty—this life without rest from morning to midnight! Smooth round cheeks begin to droop, little lines of weariness appear, unless exactly the right care is given the skin—preventing efficacious, protection swift and sure.
Certain of the people of the Social World have learned it, however—how to keep dazzlingly fresh and unwearied despite this merry round.
Where you see them you marvel at their clear smooth cheeks, snow-white shoulders, firm round throats. They give their complexions daily care with just Two fragrant Creams.
This full page advertisement appeared in
McCall’s Magazine, December, 1926
Two new society leaders are featured in this advertisement: Mrs. Reginald Vanderbilt “whose dark beauty and creamy skin have an exquisite setting in this white taffeta Lanvin robe de style, is as prominent in exclusive circles abroad as at home. She says: “Pond’s Two Creams are wonderful.”
Mrs William E. Borah wife of the United States Senator from Idaho, and a leader in Washington society, “is an enthusiastic user of Pond’s. She may be seen receiving friends in her charming Washington apartment.”
And you won’t believe this either
This is how they do it. Before dressing for the evening and again before retiring, they pat over face, shoulders, throat and hands, Pond’s Cold Cream. They let it stay on until its fine oils sink down into the skins deep cell and bring to the surface all dust and powder. With a soft cloth they wipe off cream and pore-deep dirt—and repeat, finishing with a dash of cold water or a brisk rub with ice. If their skin is dry, at night they apply more Pond’s Cold Cream and leave until morning. It brings them fresh and unlined to a new day’s gay activities.
After every cleansing with Pond’s Cold Cream, except the bedtime one, they smooth on a little Pond’s Vanishing Cream. This gives their shoulders, throats and cheeks a lovely even finish, a soft glowing tone. And how white it keeps their hands. Powder and rouge blend so beautifully and last so long over this Cream as a foundation, that you rarely see these elegant women using their vanity cases in public. Pond’s Vanishing Cream also protects their skins perfectly from city soot and dust, winter winds and the fatigue and strain of long, late hours.
That was a literary adventure. Thanks to Pond’s Cold Cream and Pond’s Vanishing Cream for giving us this glance into the 1926⁄27 world of high society.
There’s a coupon at the bottom of each advertisement which could get the reader free sample tubes of both products to permit testing of the products by “common people.”