Few items of packaging can be quite so famous as that for the humble Brillo Pad (and if you need to ask why I guess you’re probably on the wrong site!). And there are few better examples of ‘adding value’ to a basic product than Brillo – which after all is just wire wool impregnated with pink soap. When it was first launched in 1913 they didn’t even bother to do that, the bar of soap was separate inside the box!
This packet looks to date from the late 1960s, but still has echoes of older designs – particularly in the illustration of the woman scouring pans in a sink on the back. The colours overall are more primary than earlier boxes, while the hand lettered ‘at least 5D off’ is typical of a lot of the fierce price war initiatives being waged by makers of cleaning products at the time.
The cleaner was still being made in Maidenhead, Berkshire at the time by the grandly named Brillo Manufacturing Company Of Great Britain (they were bought out by Johnsons in 1986 who now make the product in Sussex).
Curiously although the Brillo packaging has been given a garish redesign make over lately by their American producers (which may follow here), this late 60s version of the logo still survives on the more basic catering packs sold to hotels and the like.
I’ve not seen a contemporary advert for this box design but the one below is only slightly older. I do have more Brillo boxes so will get round to posting them anon.