Tuesday, June 28, 2016

66. LUX LADIES OF THE 1960s-75

LUX LADY. Marlene Daudén (b. 1941 in Philippines) is a top dramatic actress 
known for Gumuhong Bantayog (1960), Salamisim (1968) and Milarosa (1965). 
This  St. Scholastica graduate is married to Ernesto Hernaez. Print Ad, 1965.

LUX Beauty Soap was introduced way back in 1925,  a luxury soap made with costly French perfume that was behind the beauty of some of the glamorous stars of Hollywood—including Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe. 

Susan Hayward, 1953
Advertising showed ordinary looking women with direct references to lovely leading ladies from the era. It was the Philippine Refining Company (est. 1916, now Unilever Philippines), maker of familiar household items like Camia Cooking Oil, Ever  Fragrant Soap and Lifebuoy Health soap,  that launched the local Lux to the Philippine market in the early 50s.  By the mid 50s, Lux was a rising brand, a worthy competitor to Procter & Gamble PMC’s, Camay.

The first 50s black and white print ads featured both local and international movie stars. But in the 1960s, with J. Walter Thompson as the agency of Lux, advertising became more fresh and sophisticated, aligned with the U.S. campaign. Using Filipina movie stars as role models, Lux’s strategy was to build relevance by looking at beauty through the consumer’s eyes.  The print series that ran from the 60s to 70s featured these lovely celebrities who were then looked up as epitomes of beauty and elegance. 


Josephine Estrada (b.) was the Philippine representative to the 1962 Miss Universe Beauty Contest in Long Beach, California. She had also been  Miss Luzon (first runner-up) to Edita Vital in 1960 and was Miss Aviation of 1961. She became an actress and appeared in Apat na Kagandahan (1965), Gintong Recuerdo (1965) and Holiday in Bali (1962). 


Daisy Romualdez (b. 1938) is a Filipino-Spanish actress who  starred in many Sampaguita Pictures productions including Silveria (1958), Si Darna at ang Impakta (1963), Show of Shows (1964)and Hinango kita sa Lusak (1967). Married to basketball player Manny Paner, she has two showbiz  daughters,Kristina and Danita Paner. Her sister , Blanca Gomez, was a well-known 60s star.

Lux Lady, MAGGIE DELA RIVA, 1966

Maggie de la Riva (b.1942) is a Filipino movie actress, who has appeared in about 40 films. She was also a former Miss Caltex candidate and also dabbled in commercial modeling.  She is best remembered for the sensational rape case in 1967 involving sons of affluent families who were eventually convicted and executed. 


Liberty Ilagan (b. 1943) comes from a Philippine showbiz family which counts such luminaries as Director Gerardo de León (father), Robert Arevalo, Jay Ilagan (cousins), Tito Arévalo, Ángel Esmeralda, Eddie Ilagan (uncles). She was first married to Rod Ongpauco, a restaurateur, then to Carlos Lardizabal, a lawyer from Los Angeles, California.

Lux Lady, ROSEMARIE, 1968

Rosemarie Sonora (b. 1948) was a member of Sampaguita Pictures Stars ’66, a group of young love teams who appeared together in movies as Mga Bata ng Lagim (1963) and Jamboree 66. She was often paired with Pepito Rodriguez and Ricky Belmonte, whom she later married. Their children are: Sheryl, Renzo and Patrick Sonora.

Lux Lady, SUSAN ROCES, 1966

Susan Roces or  Jesusa Sonora (b.1941) is a superstar actress from the 60s. Bacolod-born Susan was known by several names—Manang Inday, Queenof the Philippine Movies, The Face that Refreshes.  She is the widow of action Fernando Poe, Jr. and mother of senator and presidential candidate,  Grace Poe. A sibling, Rosemarie, was also a 60s actress. She appeared in hit movies such as Amy, Susie and Tessie, Cover Girls (with rival Amalia Fuentes), and Patayin mo sa Sindak si Barbara. 

Lux Lady, AMALIA FUENTES, 1969

Amalia Fuentes (b. 1940), in her heyday, was the premiere star of Philippine cinema and was known as the local answer to Elizabeth Taylor.  She appeared in popular movies like Movie Fan (1956), Hahabol-Habol, (1957) and Ang Senyorito at ang Atsay (1963) She married her love team partner, Romeo Vasquez, with whom she had a daughter (+) Liezl, and later Joey Stevens, the father of her son Geric. A Muhlach, she is the aunt of actors Aga and Niño Muhlach.

Lux Lady, VILMA SANTOS, 1970

Vilma Santos (b. 1953), or Ate Vi, is a Filipino actress and politician. Launched in the 1963 movie “Trudis Liit” for which she won a FAMAS Best Child Performer Award, Santos was also known as Star for All Seasons,  Grand Slam Queen, and as the longest reigning Box Office queen of Philippine cinema. Santos is married to senator Ralph Recto and served as governor of Batangas, mayor of Lipa and now, Representative of the Lone District of Lipa. Her children  include Luis (with Edu Manzano) and Christian. 

Lux Lady, GLOIA DIAZ, 1975.

Gloria Diaz (b. 1951) is the country’s first Miss Universe, atitle she won in 1969. Adfter her reign, she became a movie star, appearing in “Ang Pinakamagandang Hayop sa Balat ng Lupa” (1975) and popularizing the so-called “wet scenes”. She has since proven herself to be an excellent actress, with major acting awards to her name.

Friday, June 17, 2016

65. For a lot of charming--manicura! CARONIA NAIL POLISH

The early years of the Philippines’ most widely-known nail polish brand in the 60s are rather obscure. A quick check on the CARONIA website reveals that it was in 1968 that Don Vicente Ang and wife Belen, founders of Vibelle Manufacturing Corporation, launched the first locally produced nail polish brand in the country called, CARONIA. CARONIA was supposedly named after  the luxury ship, RMS Caronia.

However, print ads of CARONIA have been appearing in magazines since the late 1950s, featuring hand drawn illustrations of the product.

The CARONIA ads and the product labels, however, did not include the name of the manufacturer—but the familiar CARONIA font is consistent with ads from the 1970s. In 1961, CARONIA produced its first full-color print ads.

The first CARONIA TV ad I remember featured Japanese-looking mod models  in Twiggy haircuts and micro-minis dancing to a catchy Japanese-sounding jingle with nonsensical lyrics—sung by a clearly non-English speaking singer. The lyrics were all muddled up and to my ears, the words sounded vaguely like this:

CARONIA, CARONIA…ika bufini—manicura!
For a lot of charming—manicura!
Confucius say, it’s CARONIA!

For many years, I thought that CARONIA was made in Japan, as the look of the TVC had a trademark Japanese look! The company website tells us that the TVC came out in 1968 on black and white TV. The copy of that memorable first CARONIA is long gone, but a local TVC version using the same jingle was produced in the very early 80s with star-for-all-seasons Vilma Santos now doing the dancing.

It was rehashed again in the mid-1990s, and the new commercial--choreographed by Douglas Nierras and directed by Fritz Infante—sought to replicate the success of the first commercial with Filipino dancers doing similar dance steps in front of a giant product mock-up of a CARONIA bottle. The jingle was reworded with a more sensible lyrics set to a livelier arrangement.


CARONIA was beset with more competition in the next decade, but it chose to present its products judiciously outside of advertising. But in 2008, an all-new CARONIA commercial was seen on TV starring the band Imago. Along with the contemporary hip-hop dance moves and special effects was a new CARONIA jingle commissioned from the band.


The completely new jingle was fresh and sophisticated alright, but there’s nothing as original as the first CARONIA jingle—nonsensical lyrics and all!

Vilma Santos Caronia Ad, uploaded by STARSTAR
Caronia youtube videos: from Caronia Philippines

Sunday, June 12, 2016



As a new schoolyear begins, the hunt is on for new school supplies needed by students to get through another year of learning, experimenting, solving problems and making reports. In the 50s, there were already established stores that carried school supplies from leading distributors and manufacturers. H. G. Henares & Sons, Inc. was one such enterprise, established by Hilarion Henares Sr. back in 1939. By 1961, it operated an industrial complex that manufactured  crayons, school chalks, water color, erasers, paste and other school supplies. It held the exclusive license to manufacture the famous Gold Medal Crayola brand of crayons (1953), Old Town Carbon Paper and Typewriter Ribbons (1955) and Parker Quink Ink (1956).

CORONA SUPPLY, Print Ad, 1955

Meanwhile, student so mathematics, geometry and engineering can get their compasses, protractors, rulers and triangles from Corona Supply Co., established way back in 1920. It was known for its imported school and office supplies carrying name brands like Staetler and Faber Castell.


 The best-selling product among students of engineering were the Castell Slide Rules--used for trigonometric functions mostly---and now an extinct educational tool replaced by new and powerful calculators.

VASQUEZ BROS.&CO. INC. Print Ad, 1955

Aside from Corona, Vasquez Bros. was another happy hunting ground for school supplies and educational materials. It had branches in Recto, Sta. Cruz and Quiapo and was just as well-known as Goodwill and National Book Store in those days.

MONGOL PENCIL, Print Ad, 1964

No one got through school without a pencil--the basic instrument for writing. And when one mentions pencils, the top-of-mind brand is undoubtedly, Mongol. The pencil was an original product of Eberhard Faber, a pencil factory in Germany. As mentioned, Henares & Sons acquired the license to manufacture the world-renowned pencils, until Amalgamated Specialties Corp. took over. Today, Mongol Pencils--the most popular brand patronized by Filipino students--are manufactured in China.


For making duplicates of book reports and theses, Old Town Carbon Paper was indispensable--it made copies fast, without smudges and blurs. Like Mongol, it was manufactured by Amspec,

PARKER QUINK INK, Print Ad, 1957

Time was when the use of fountain pens was limited to students of means and to elite private schools. The ink of choice was the revolutionary Quink made by Parker Pen Company. Unlike other water inks, it was alcohol-based so it dried by absorption, rather than evaporation.  A washable version--perfect for messy students--was introduced in 1957.

 Remember, it really doesn't matter whether your school supplies were bought from Divisoria or from National Book Store. What matters more is acquiring an education so that you become a better version of yourself!

Friday, June 3, 2016

63. Creative Guild's 1989 TV Ad of the Year: SARSI, 'ANGAT SA IBA' TVC 45s

SARSI, ANGAT SA IBA, 1989 Creative Guild TV Ad of the Year

“Big, brown & beautiful…”

The stunning 1989 ad of the year remains an industry classic and epitomized the kind of assignment that every creative person dreams of one day finding in his pigeonhole.”That was a fluke,” declares Nonoy Gallardo, former basic/FCB executive director and now, president of Creative Partners.

“Our clients gave us complete freedom, it was a new situation, and we were experimenting with a new sound. Serendipity talaga. There will never be another account like that again”

The account was Cosmos Bottling Corporation, an old softdrink manufacturer with such an image problem, Gallardo recalls, citing the mountains of research conducted by Basic/FCB in preparation for the five-agency bid, that store owners were actually ashamed to carry the brand. “All they remember was the SARSI with egg. The brand needed a complete overhaul.”

The overhaul began when Cosmos was newly acquired by the Concepcions, who wanted it relaunched in a big way. “Suddenly,” recalls the SARSI copywriter and now Jimenez/DMB&B creative director Teddy Catuira,”there was this brand with a heritage, but with very poor communications that wanted to go against the giants.”

It was decided early on, Catuira says, that music would be the main weapon of choice. “What better way did you have of reaching the youth?” explains Gallardo. “But if we came up with a typical Top 40s song, luma kami sa Coke and Pepsi.

Serendipity proved to be the savior because, at the same time, Katha, the organization of songwriters of which Gallardo is an active member, had been toying around with the concept of genuinely Filipino music, searching for an amalgam of influences and northern and southern  rhythms that could be considered distinctively Pinoy. They called it “Brown Music,” and Gallardo and his collaborator, composer Ryan Cayabyab, suddenly found themselves with a perfect venue for experimentation. “We took Ryan and his keyboard to the presentation.” Gallardo laughs,”and we lectured the client about the lack of dictinctiveness of Filipino music.”

Soon, a series of commercial heralding the advent of the “Bagong Tunog” was in the works, featuring independent ads that gave unique personalities to SARSI, Cheers and Pop Colas as Basic/FCB plunged into a flurry of activity. The Creative Guild chose SARSI’s “Angat sa Iba” 45 seconder as the TV Ad of the Year.

The SARSI material, Catuira says, was written in a flash---as in, about 10 minutes before Cayabyab had to put the words to music. With SARSI being “neither here nor there, east meets west,” as Catuira explains it, it was the angle of versatile superiority that ultimately drove the ad.

WATCH SARSI "Angat sa Iba" TVC here:

Director Jeric Soriano, art director Egay Oliva and the whole creative team “poured on the creativity,” Gallardo recounts, and holed up in a studio to shoot what became a colorful celebration of departure from the norm.

Swimmers and dancers leapt  joyously out of acrowd of carbon copies, while precision dancers and kabuki masks provide the uniform assembly-line backdrop for the welcome upstarts. The proposition was simple  and not too presumptuous: try this product if you’re tired of the obvious two-faced big brand monopoly—just for a change.

“Ganoon nga ba talaga?” the a capella beginning chorus questioned, “pare-pareho na lang ba?” before thumping into a vibrant and triumphant “Mag-SARSI ka para ma-iba!’ It was definitely high-gloss softdrink advertising, with a strong Filipino heart, and the audience could tell the difference immediately.

The timing was also perfect, Catuira recalls, as “there was still this post-EDSA hype about being Filipino.”  This “upsurge of nationalism.” Gallardo adds, filtered out to the rest of the industry, as other agencies and production houses cheered the team on.”Everyone was excited and everybody saw it as an industry accomplishment. They wanted to show the Hong Kong people that we were just as good at production as anybody else.

SARSI skyrocketed back into the national consciousness, reappearing in restaurants and stores. The erstwhile snooty storeowners were begiing dealers for cases of the “Bagong Tunog” softdrinks. And, Gallardo claims, the ad remains a reference for the creative advertising that did its job very well.

ADVERTISER: Cosmos Bottling Corporation
COPYWRITER: Teddy Catuira
PRODUCERS: Mario Sarmiento, Roby Ablen
DIRECTOR: Jeric Soriano
PRODUCTION HOUSE: Production Village

PERFECT 10: A Decade of Creativity in Philippine Advertising, published by the Executive Committee of the Creative Guild of the Philippines, an affiliate of the Association of Accredited Advertising Agencies of the Philippines. Manila, 1995