Thursday, March 24, 2011

Silent Film Star Mildred Davis was Maybelline Model in 1922.

            Who's captivating Eyes grace the cover of
                           The Maybelline Story?

Mildred Davis.

After Maybelline's initial advertisement ran in the classifieds of popular magazines in the late 1910's with Mabel Williams illustrated image, Tom Lyle began looking for a film star to represent Maybelline.  In the early 1920's he contracted beautiful Photoplay stars because of the wide audience they brought into theatres all over the country.   One of the most popular actresses of the day was beautiful silent film star Mildred Davis or Mid as Tom Lyle liked to call her.  She was a tiny 5 foot, perky-ingenue with monster-big flashing eyes that captivated the audience and drew them in.

Mildred Davis married Harold Lloyd in 1922.  Harold Lloyd was a comedian in the ranks of Charlie Chaplin and he'd been looking for a leading lady to replace Bebe Daniels. He cast Davis in his comedy short  From Hand to Mouth in 1919.  It would be the first of fifteen films they would star in together.

Harold Lloyd and Mildred Davis.

Soon after "From Hand To Mouth," was released Tom Lyle contacted Mildred to discuss her being the next face of Maybelline. Mildred Davis appealed to sweet young ladies who were just beginning to look in the mirror and compare themselves with the beautiful faces on screen.  Mildred Davis with her huge made-up larger than life eyes on screen an off silently encouraged young ladies to pick up a Photoplay movie magazine and order their first little red box of Maybelline.  Once they tried Maybelline with it's tiny black brush and cake of mascara they were hooked and word of mouth spread from one sweet young lady to the next.

Mildred Davis in early 1920 ad.
Click here to see Harold Lloyd and Mildred Davis' most famous silent film  video.   Swinging Safety Last.

If you watched the video of Mildred Davis you saw what Tom Lyle saw when he sat in that theatre in 1922 and gazed up into those eyes on the silver screen.  He knew what he wanted and he wanted Mildred Davis "the girl next door" to  represent Maybelline.

Read more about Mildred Davis and Tom Lyle in The Maybelline Story and the Spirited Family Dynasty Behind It.

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