As a family-run company, we have stood for opportunity and personal expression for over 85 years. We are proud that our formulas are developed right here in the USA, keeping hundreds of Americans in the workforce.
Merle Norman started the “try before you buy” philosophy, which continues to this day, emphasizing our strong stand on customer service. We believe in the free makeover and that the right makeup can change your life.
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Merle Nethercutt Norman
MEET MERLEMerle Nethercutt Norman was one of the first women in cosmetics and a true entrepreneur. It started in the late 1920’s when she began tackling her own skin challenges by testing formulas made right in her kitchen.
These formulas were so effective that she began sharing them with family and friends. She demonstrated the products as a value-added service, believing if she could “get it on their faces” they would become customers. It was from this concept that the famous and much imitated slogan,
“Try Before You Buy” originated.
As demand for her product grew, Merle opened her first Studio in 1931 in Santa Monica, CA, with the help of her nephew, J.B. Nethercutt, who assisted in the development and manufacturing of her products. Decades before working women were the norm, Merle Norman gave hundreds of women the opportunity to achieve business success by owning and operating their own Studios. Her single Studio has evolved into the successful corporation it is today, which remains just miles from the original Ocean Park location. Our Research & Development and manufacturing facilities are still located in Los Angeles, where the products
continue to be made.
Ocean Park, CA 1933
Dedicated to Merle Norman's original vision of superior products, individual service and the "Try Before You Buy" philosophy, and bolstered by a contemporary new design, Merle Norman Cosmetic Studios are positioned for continued expansion and even greater success in the years ahead. Although Merle Norman passed away in 1972 and J.B. Nethercutt in 2004, the company, under the guidance of JB’s son, Jack Nethercutt, remains a family-owned business dedicated to helping women everywhere look
and feel their absolute best.
We are on a mission to make the world a more beautiful place by