Inventor of Frownies
Frownies were created in 1889 after Margaret Kroesen discovered that her daughter Alice, a concert pianist, had developed unsightly wrinkles and frown lines. With a desire to maintain her youthful beauty and stage presence, Mrs. Kroesen created Wrinkle Eradicators (as they were first called) by employing the basic principle of fitness to the muscles of the face. At the time, there was no thought of producing them for anyone else but herself and her granddaughter. But Alice, after using her mother's amazing invention, was a living testimony, and it became clear that women and men everywhere could benefit from these Wrinkle Eradicators.
Several years later, Mrs. Kroesen's husband's death made it necessary for her to enter the business world; she joined B & P Company (Beauty and Personality) as Managing Director. At the time, B & P specialized in barber supplies such as straight razors, razor straps and pomades. With the advent of the safety razor, sales lagged and profits dwindled, making the bankers who owned the company happy to accept Mrs. Kroesen's offer to buy them out.
As owner, she gradually dropped the barber supplies, and offered only her Wrinkle Eradicators and skin treatments. A few small ads were placed to help get the word out about her amazing invention, and these soon paid off in increased sales. During World War II a luxury tax was placed on cosmetic products forcing Mrs. Kroesen to drop all lines except the facial pads.
Every month makeup artist Perc Westmore (founder of The House of Westmore) sent a box of mail from women and men requesting help in eliminating wrinkle and frown lines. Westmore was instrumental in promoting Frowines to the entertainment industry and those influenced by it. Mrs. Kroesen and her granddaughter Margaret personally answered the hundreds of letters they received from all over the world.
The November 15, 1937 issue of LIFE Magazine highlighted Frownies being used by Hollywood actresses in the article “Young Starlets Learn to Act at Fox Drama School.” The following, an excerpt:
“Miss [Dixie] Dunbar, a Twentieth Century-Fox featured player, was recently sent back to Miss [Florence] Enright's school to get rid of a frown. The picture shows Miss Dunbar with a frown; in the centre, the anti-frowner [Frownie]...is applied to the forehead; at right, she talks without frowning.”
Alice Laumer, Mrs. Kroesen's daughter, joined the business to help with the growing sales. After Alice's death, Mrs. Kroesen remained at the helm of the company until her own passing in 1962.
Continuing the Legacy
Following her mother and grandmother in business, Margaret Wright (named after her grandmother) redesigned and updated the packaging for Frownies, never altering the formula which had proven so effective.
Frownies remained, at the time, a relatively well-kept beauty secret between Broadway and Hollywood stars and makeup artists. Olivia de Havilland ordered Frownies, and had them sent to her at hotels all over the world. Gloria Swanson wore them in Sunset Boulevard, one of the greatest movies about Hollywood ever made. And the infamous Kennedy women wrote letters to B & P Company ordering Frownies.
Now, more than a century since they were created, Mrs. Wright still oversees the operations of the company, but her daughter-in-law, Kathy Wright, is now taking her turn as the fourth generation woman helping preserve the faces of women and men everywhere.
Kathy Wright and Frownies Today
From Super Mom to CEO
Kathy Wright is in her fourth year as CEO/General Manager of B & P Company. Again, the Frownies box has changed, but the 115 year-old formula remains in tact, and Kathy brings a bright new direction to the company.
Kathy has raised five children and run her own business teaching and supporting women in the areas of spirituality, childbirth, health, wellness and beauty. Kathy has been involved with YMCA swim teams for 12 years, and home-schooled her children for 8 years. She considers herself a life coach to the many men, women and children she has had the opportunity to consult, coach and teach.
Kathy has studied health and wellness for twenty-five years and has adopted a lifestyle of health and responsibility. She is committed to principles that produce freedom from disease or premature aging. She understands from her research that what you use on your body is absorbed into your system, and your body has to cope with it. So for twenty-something years, Kathy has not used anything chemical on her skin. And twenty years ago, there weren't many products on the market that did not have chemicals, so she made a lot of her own skin care products from natural ingredients in the kitchen.
Her lifestyle, prior to her involvement with B & P Company, has prepared her for the demanding role of managing a growing anti-aging company.
Frownies Facial Pads reshape the muscle using nothing chemical, nothing toxic. Frownies are strictly mechanical, says Kathy. And now, she has joined forces with some of the most renowned and sought after experts in the areas of product development and skin cancer research for one very specific purpose - to create the first products that you can trust to work with your skin, giving you healthy, younger looking skin. Healthy, younger-looking skin starts with the immune system.
Frownies has added Immune Perféct and Immune Shield to its Skin Treatment line. Immune Perféct and Immune Shield unite science and beauty in advanced product systems that contain the newest technology to help prevent skin wrinkling and fight the conditions leading to skin cancer.
B & P Company and Kathy Wright bring you science made beautiful. Over a century since Frownies were first created, B & P continues its excellence in the skin care industry, four generations of women in the business of reducing the visible signs of aging.
Kathy promises to “continue to update the skin care line with the first products to boost the health of the skin for a total beauty treatment.”