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2005 Wk 1 quote

Already, I fall behind on the 'quote from desk diary' lark. This is due to stupid workloads. However, here is Wk 1 (3rd-9th January).

"Some women won't buy anything unless they can pay a lot."
Helena Rubenstein, 1870-1965. Cosmetics tycoon.

I cannot come up with three mental card files for Rubenstein, so I shall just have to rely on google and my collection of vintage make-up adverts.

Rubenstein is the sort of make-up name which makes me think of Coco Chanel, post-war glam and the smell of mothers. Rather like Rimmel, until its make-over as Rimmel London, or Elizabeth Arden, HR conjures up adult make-up: all 1950s red lipstick and spat on mascara. Seems I'm not far off in that the women who founded and ran these companies were stern matriarchs engaged in wars over the look of women.

Obviously, these days its all the usual science nonsense at the house of HR.

But what of the quote? Well, it's odd how it contrasts with an example of her advertising (via Blue Angel) which promises that the cosmetics cost only a few pence a day. And the second example would never get past the ASA now: "your skin is actually young once more".

HR 7 beauty problems

HR advertising copy

The quote comes down to the idea that your monetary status is displayed via your goods. Why pay X for a good product when you can pay X2 for a product with the right logo? HR made much of her European aristo roots, so that the American women buying into her beauty ideas were buying into the cultural value of 'old money'. It's a facile quote, really, although it demonstrates the canny business perceptions of HR. I'm not entirely sure why it's in my diary though.

Posted @ 12:02 am on Monday, January 10, 2005
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