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Beauty Classics: Nivea Creme (and some surprising tricks/uses for this gem!)

Everybody knows and probably has owned one tub/tin of this creme in their lifetime. To me it’s synonymous with Europe and my mum 🙂 The creme reminds me of my childhood as it was a staple in our home. My mum used to use it back in Poland when she was young and there were a million different and surprising uses for the cream – one of which is mentioned below.



So where did it all begin seeing as the cream (and the brand Nivea) is older than any of us? 😛 Nivea comes from the latin word/s (niveus/nivea/niveum) meaning ‘snow white’. Nice huh? The company was founded by Carl Paul Beiersdorf, a German pharmacist. The original Nivea creme that has become Nivea’s trademark product was actually developed by Oskar Troplowitz who took over the company in 1900. He came up with a water in oil emulsion that wouldn’t ‘separate’ and remained stable, unlike most other creams of the time. He also added Eucerit (basically lanolin oil). The formula of the Creme is so good, it hasn’t changed since it was first produced. Oh – and I can’t forget to mention that he was Polish (as many leading pharmacists and cosmetic entrepreneurs were)! In the 1930s they started producing other products like tanning oils, shaving cream and even toothpaste! The company is now owned by German Beiserdorf.

I love these vintage ads and old packaging!



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The ad above uses the slogan ‘Strengthen your skin! Then no house work will leave a nasty trace on your skin.’


‘Congratulations! I’m admiring Madams/Mademoiselle’s game, but even more so your healthy, sporty and robust appearance!’ I’ve noticed Nivea liked to use ‘sport’ themes in their ads (a lot) back in the day.

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‘As a canvas under powder – also Nivea!’

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‘The word creme tells you nothing – the word Nivea tells you everything!’

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‘Now without fear…’


‘At home and in sport… Creme Nivea takes care of your skin’


‘There’s no other creme like Nivea to take care of your skin – both for adults and children. Protects your skin from unkind atmosphere, provides your skin with elasticity, strengthens and strengthens the tanning effects of the sun’ LOL – Europeans and tanning huh… even back in the day!

Nivea Creme

This packaging must be of the first Nivea ever came up with…




‘Strengthens skin!’

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“Despite housework – hands which have been taken care of!’


‘Take advantage of all the good from the suns rays!’


‘Spring makes the heart young – Nivea makes skin young!’

That Nivea man is a bit of a know it all huh… As I said earlier, I’m not surprised that it was used as a multi purpose product. Thanks to the lanolin and it’s thick consistency, it does re-enforce the skins barrier, keeping it from drying out, especially in harsh environmental conditions. There was an interesting article in the Daily Mail – a lady used Nivea Creme on half of her face, while on the other she used La Mer’s fancy and VERY expensive moisturiser. The result? A month later, a Dermatologist stated that the side which had been moisturised with the Nivea Creme was most hydrated and hence fine lines and wrinkles became less pronounced.


Read more about the Daily Mails experiment here.

I’m not that surprised at the results. Mostly because the lady states that her skin is extremely dry and was dehydrated. We should use skin care tailored to our needs and concerns, so obviously the more moisturising product is going to work the best. It does prove that expensive products aren’t always necessary. Hydration and re-enforcing our skins barrier function should be the number one concern for our skin. Not everyone is going to need such heavy duty moisturiser, so it’s not going to be a miracle product for all. I would also recommend using a different moisturiser in the morning and a different one for night time. But i will do a separate post on that soon 🙂

So what other can this nifty product be used for? Putting moisture back into leather! This was a trick my mum used back in the day in Poland. I found a vintage Oroton handbag in her closet, except that the leather is dry and after a while even the best leather polish seems to disappear, becoming dry again very soon. Does it work? Sure does! I tried taking a before and after shot, but the difference isn’t very visible thanks to the poor lighting. It works a treat though and the difference in person is very noticeable. It’s great if you don’t want to use a separate product/or if you don’t have any on hand! Surprisingly you don’t need a lot either. Just scoop out a little Nivea creme and put it on a soft cloth (a little goes a long way which you will notice for yourself anyways) and rub it into your leather goods. The colour of my handbag deepened a little and it looked glossy and revived.



Above: Before some love and care. The colour of the leather looked pale, dry and cracked and in some places.


Above: After some love and care – Glossy and a deeper colour. Any damage looks less visible.

Oh and here’s a funny tale for you – my mum along with other Polish people think that the Creme is different if it is manufactured outside of Europe, so she buys it only from the Polish deli lol I don’t think this is true, but it’s funny how suss they can be! Supposedly you can only buy the creme in its original packaging (as in a ‘tin’) in Germany, but I’m sure I have seen tins of the creme in Poland to (maybe some of them do get exported or something).

I hope you found this post interesting and maybe learned something new 🙂 Do you love Nivea Creme? What does it remind you of? Maybe you have some special tricks/uses for this old gem?

Don’t forget to join me on Facebook beauty bees! I will probably do a series of posts about ‘beauty classics’ so you don’t want to miss a beat!

Catch ya next time,

Beauty Bee~

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#Skincare #leatherpolish #Eucerit #Vintageads #classic #lanolin #Nivea #beautyclassics #marketing #NiveaCreme #Hydration

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