The History of Avon  


From Avons History to Avon today

Avon was established in the USA over 120 years ago by a 28 year old door-to-door bookseller, David McConnell. He discovered that the perfumes he was giving away as an added customer incentive were the very reason women were buying his books.


The California Perfume Company was founded, with a line of five floral fragrances, and a range of everyday essential items. All items were backed by an unconditional, money back guarantee – something still upheld by Avon. In the early days, products were sold by showing customers a sample case. As the range of products grew the company published its first brochure after about ten years.


The world's first " Avon Lady" Mrs P.F.E. Albee of Winchester, New Hampshire, was hired by David McConnell in 1886. Mrs Albee sold products and recruited other women as depot agents, becoming the role model for the Avon Representative of today. 

Avon Calling

During a visit to England, David McConnell was struck by the beauty of the countryside surrounding Stratford-on-Avon, and introduced a product line called Avon comprising a toothbrush, talcum powder, and vanity set. In 1939, the company’s name was changed to Avon Products Inc. 

Avon Shopping 

With the 1950s becoming the age of television, the famous ‘ding dong – Avon calling’ fanfare was first heard on US television in 1954. Further global expansion accelerated in the latter part of the decade, paving the way for entry into Europe. 


Today Avon is the world's leading direct seller of beauty products and other accessories, with a global annual turnover of $10 billion. Avon markets to women and men in over 100 countries with over 6.2 million Independent Sales Representatives of which 170,000 are UK Avon Sales Representatives by using the Avon UK Brochure to spread the word. 


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