Factor, Max (1872-1938)

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Factor, Max (1872-1938)

Best known for the cosmetic line that bears his name, Max Factor also pioneered screen makeup for motion pictures. When films were in their infancy, stage makeup was generally used on the actors but it did not photograph well. Factor created a makeup more suitable to film lighting. He also popularized the use of human hair in wigs. He later won a special Oscar in 1928 for his panchromatic makeup. He made what would become his most famous product, Pancake Makeup, when the advent of Technicolor film required a another new type of makeup. His line of skin-toned foundations disguised facial imperfections and was soon marketed for home use to mainstream America. Max Factor cosmetics remained one of the most popular brands of stage and street makeup into the 1990s.

—Jill A. Gregg

Further Reading:

Basten, Fred E. Max Factor's Hollywood: Glamour, Movies, Makeup. California, General Publishing Group, 1995.