Related Searches


Max Factor

Max Factor & Company is an international cosmetics firm, founded in 1909 by Max Factor, a make-up artist for the Russian royal ballet. Presently, the Max Factor name is a popular brand of Procter & Gamble Co., which purchased the company in 1991.


In the 1920s and 1930s, the "golden years" of Hollywood, Max Factor became intimately associated with the world of movie make-up. He created the lip gloss for the movies in 1914, and coined the term "makeup", based on the verb, "to make up" (one's face).

Jean Harlow, Claudette Colbert, Bette Davis, Norma Shearer, Joan Crawford, Judy Garland, and virtually all of the major movie actresses were regular customers of the Max Factor beauty salon, located near Hollywood Boulevard. Max Factor's name appeared on many movie credits, and Factor himself appeared in some cameos. He created many looks to establish these actresses, such as Clara Bow's heart-shaped/pierrot lips. Years later, he exaggerated Joan Crawford's naturally full lips to distinguish her from the myriad of would-be stars copying the Clara Bow look he created. He also created shades specifically for them: Platinum (for Jean Harlow), Special Medium (for Joan Crawford), and Dark (for Claudette Colbert).

Max Factor & Company was a two-family, multi-generational, international cosmetics company before its sale in 1973 for $500 million dollars. Many of Max Factor's celebrity clients appeared, at no cost, in beautiful full page, color magazine ads to promote Max Factor cosmetics, so the brand "Max Factor" soon became world-renowned.

Max Factor is credited with many cosmetic innovations. Some of his innovations were the first motion picture makeup in 1914, Lip Gloss in 1930, Pan-Cake Makeup, forerunner of all modern cake makeups in 1937, Pan-Stik Makeup in 1948, Erace, the original cover-up cosmetic in 1954, and the first "waterproof" makeup in 1971.

1914: Created the first makeup made specifically for motion pictures, a thinner greasepaint made in 12 shades. It was in cream form and packaged in jars, as opposed to the thicker stick greasepaints used for theatre.

1920: Developed the "Color Harmony" principles of makeup, which held that "certain combinations of a woman's complexion, hair and eye coloring were most effectively complemented by specific makeup shades".

1925: Introduces "Max Factor's Supreme Nail Polish", a metal pot of beige-colored powder that is sprinkled on the nails and buffed with a chamois buffer. It gives nails shine and some tint.

1927: Creates "Society Nail Tint", a small porcelain pot containing rose colored cream. Applied to the nail and buffed, it gives a natural rose color. "Society Nail White" also hits the market. It is a tube of chalky white liquid that is applied under nail tips and left to dry. The end result resembles the modern French manicure.

1928: Developed makeup, made specifically for use in black-and-white films. Max Sr. was awarded an Oscar for this innovation.

1930: Invented Lip Gloss

1932: Developed a line of "Television Makeup", specifically to meet the needs of television.

1934: Introduces Liquid Nail Enamel, forerunner of today's nail enamels.

1935: Opened the unique Max Factor Makeup Salon in Los Angeles.

1937: Created PanCake, forerunner of modern cake makeup, originally developed for color films.

1938: Max Factor died at age 59. Max Factor Jr. expands the family run business internationally.

1940: Created Tru Color Lipstick, the first smear-proof lipstick.

1948: Developed PanStik makeup.

1954: Created Erace, the original concealer, and developed a line of cosmetics specifically for color television's needs. (This line remains the standard for TV makeup).

1971: Invented the first "waterproof" makeup.

After Factor's death

After Max Factor's death in 1938, Frank Factor (Max Factor Jr) expanded the private cosmetics firm, along with members of the immediate family including Sidney Factor, Louis Factor, Davis Factor and Max Firestein. By the 1960s Max Factor Jr, Max Firestein and grandsons Donald Factor, Alfred Jay Firestein and Chester Lee Firestein were still involved. Under his leadership, in 1965 Max Factor Jr established "Geminesse", a line of makeup, skincare and perfume products that were sold only by uniformed clerks in department stores. The packaging and products were different; many of the containers were designed to resemble Grecian sculptures.

In 1973, after the untimely death of president Alfred Jay Firestein, Max Factor & Co. merged with Norton Simon Industries. In 1976, president Chester Lee Firestein and Max Factor Jr resigned. They were the last members of Max Factor's immediate family to work for the company. It was under Norton Simon that Max Factor launched "Maxi", a line of makeup aimed at a younger, more savvy consumer. Maxi sold products aimed at adolescent tastes, such as lip gloss, colour rubs and "mood" lipsticks. Maxi was priced to compete with market leaders Bonne Bell and Cover Girl.

Neither Maxi, Geminesse nor Max Factor were able to lift the company's declining profits and market share. However, in 1975 Max Factor launched the successful Halston line of fragrances, which quickly became the second best-selling designer fragrance in the world. (Chanel No.5 was first.)

In 1983 a company called Esmark took over Norton Simon. Esmark then merged with Beatrice Foods, which lumped Max Factor into their Playtex beauty division. In 1986 Ron Perelman of Revlon bought the Playtex beauty division for $500 million. In 1991 Revlon sold Max Factor to Procter & Gamble for $1.5 billion. As of 2007, Procter & Gamble still own the Max Factor brand.

The Max Factor Family continues their tradition of philanthrophy through various charitable organizations, trusts and private foundations. Grandchildren Gerald Factor, Max Factor III and Barbara Factor Bentley are trustees of the Max Factor Family Foundation, which among other things continues to make generous grants for medical research, patient health care, scholarships, human rights, care of the elderly, and assistance to the disabled.

Grandchildren Barbara Factor Bentley and Chester Lee Firestein serve on the Board of Directors of nationally acclaimed Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. The Factor-Firestein families have contributed millions of dollars to CSMC, including construction of the Max Factor Family Tower and Alfred Jay Firestein Diabetes Center.

Michael Allen Firestein is a successful litigation attorney and partner with Proskauer Rose LLP in Los Angeles, CA. Community service is also an important part of Michael's personal life. Most significantly, for 15 years Michael has served as a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee for Concern Foundation for Cancer Research, Inc. and as President of the Board of Directors from 1994-1996. Currently Firestein also serves on the Board of Directors of Bet Tzedek, a Los Angeles based provider of pro bono legal services for the community.

Steven Factor Firestein has served for nearly 14 years as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the American Cancer Fund for Children, Inc. (NY) and Kids Cancer Connection, Inc. (CA) in Los Angeles. Kids Cancer Connection programs and social services are available to patients receiving treatment at children's hospitals across the nation. Firestein has been recognized by members of Congress for his advocacy of patient and family rights.

Gary Steven Firestein, MD is a greatgrandchild through his grandmother Cecilia Factor-Firestein and his father Chester Lee Firestein. He was educated at Harvard and Johns Hopkins and is a leading world authority in Rheumatology. His research contributed to the discovery of ant-cytokine therapy for rheumatoid arthritis. Firestein is currently Professor of Medicine and Dean of Translational Medicine at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. He is married to Linda Lyons Firestein, MD and has two children, David and Catherine.

Greatgrandsons Davis Factor III and Dean Factor founded Smashbox Studios in 1991. The enterprise expanded to include a photo studio, modeling agency, production company, clothing line, and, in 1997, a cosmetics line called Smashbox Cosmetics.

Davis Factor Jr is a retired Eldon Industries executive now serving on the Board of Directors at Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula in Northern California. He established the Davis Factor Jr Fund at the Community Foundation of Monterey County. After her husband's death in 1975, Doris Berman Factor gave the University of California a large gift which made possible the completion of the Louis and Doris Factor Health Sciences Building on the UCLA campus.

Some of Max Factor's greatgrandchildren are less illustrious. Andrew Stuart Luster is a serial rapist who is currently in prison serving a 126-year sentence after being caught in Mexico by Duane "Dog" Chapman, the Bounty Hunter, in 2003. Luster is the son of Max Factor's adopted granddaughter Elizabeth Shore-Luster. David Nazworthy, aka Dave Naz, is the son of Maxine Factor-Nazworthy who is the daughter of Sidney Factor. David is a published art nouveau photographer and the author of L.A. Bondage, Lust Circus, Fresh: Girls of Seduction and several other books.



External links


Search another word or see greatgrandchildrenon Dictionary | Thesaurus |Spanish
Copyright © 2015, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature