A century of glorious colour Sep 2, 2021

A century of glorious colour

A century of glorious colour

Can you imagine Avon without lipstick? It seems unthinkable now, but Avon only began selling lipstick in 1919.

The original offering was only two shades—light and dark—and the product was often applied in the fashionable “Cupid’s Bow” style of the times, intended to emphasise the two peaks of the upper lips.

Avon’s lipstick range grew, and by the 1930s we carried five hues: Dark, Medium, Vivid, Betsy Ross and Ripe Cherry. Customers unsure of which shade to choose could sample them using the Avon Lipstick Sample Card, created in 1938. The card offered one shade in a miniature tube and shared some of the lipstick’s most enticing features (“high quality” and “amazingly indelible”).

Inspired by silver screen sirens, women in the 1940s and 1950s looked for brighter, more vivid shades – and Avon upped our offering, selling colours like Double Dare Red, Ruby Red and Crimson. Demand kept coming, and soon Avon would have one of the fastest assembly lipstick lines, producing over 250 lipsticks in one minute and often 300,000 lipsticks in a single day.

As fashions changed in the 1970s and 1980s, customers embraced the general spirit of rebelliousness and looked for bold colours such as orange, coral and fuchsia.

At the end of the second millennium, Avon went even further, announcing that “colour is power”.

Today, we sell 3 lipsticks every second. Colour is a powerful mood and confidence booster, so lipstick feels especially important in these difficult times. That’s why we’re bringing lipstick back after over a year of hiding our smiles away behind masks. We’ve listened to consumers’ needs to deliver something more – new reasons to smile, feel more confident and empowered.

Our Ultra Lipstick range has long been a firm beauty favourite, with one sold every second globally. In 2021, we reinvented our number one lipstick for richer colour and creamier comfort, across 60 best-selling shades. The upgraded formula boasts an exclusive blend of nourishing oils including avocado oil, to ensure ultra moisturisation – giving you all the colour and none of the dryness.

After over a year spent at home, customers are looking for a rich sensorial experience as well as a strong colour. That’s why the Ultra Lipstick also includes a mouth-watering new fragrance, mocha crème, for a deliciously comforting scent.

What’s your favourite lipstick? Celebrate your generation—and a century of loving lipstick—by wearing it next time you step out of your front door.