“No more tears.” Wouldn’t that be a wonderful world to live in? It’s an ideal that catapulted Johnson’s Baby products to a huge share of the market in 1953 when they introduced their now-ubiquitous baby shampoo, promising parents an easier and less painful way to bathe their little ones.
Founded in 1893, Johnson’s Baby started off as baby powder and sanitary napkin company that spun out of pharmaceutical manufacturer Johnson and Johnson. The two companies are still intertwined today, with Johnson and Johnson being one of the most valuable corporations on the planet. Johnson and Johnson has more than seventy billion dollars per year in sales.
Over the course of many years, Johnson’s Baby has worked its way into homes across the globe as an essential line of products for babies. The name “Johnson’s” is synonymous with infant care.
Johnson’s Baby line of products started out with baby powder, which was originally marketed along with included sanitary napkins for new moms. Eventually, the two products were divided due to consumer demand. The company has gone on to create nearly universal products for newborn care like Johnson’s Baby Shampoo, Johnson’s Baby Wipes, Johnson’s Baby Oil, Johnson’s Baby Lotion, and many more. These products are used in hospitals and far beyond.
These products were created for babies, but they have come to be used by people of all ages and for all kinds of purposes. Johnson’s marketing does focus on families, with advertisements run in parenting magazines, on television, and online. Johnson’s Baby published an infant care book in 1976 as a guide for new parents, a guide which naturally highlighted their line of infant care products.
In the 1970s, the company began marketing “family usage” for their line of products to reach a wider market. This strategy proved to be a huge boost for the company.
Baby Powder Health Risks
Health risks associated with the inhalation of baby powder came to the forefront in 1985 when physicians warned against its use with small infants. Johnson’s Baby issued a statement reinforcing that the product was safe if it was used as intended, away from the face of infants.
The company was ordered to pay seventy-two million dollars to the family of a woman who died from ovarian cancer that was reportedly shown to be caused by using their baby powder products.
Johnson’s has sponsored clinical research into the safety of many of its products, using randomized trials to understand issues from infant bathing to baby lotion.
The market for infant care has dramatically changed since the founding of Johnson’s Baby over a century ago. Modern infant care is increasingly focused on more natural and less medical solutions for baby care. This has given rise to competitors like Honest Co. and Seventh Generation, who market infant care products that are organic. Though these companies are dwarfed by the size and reach of Johnson’s Baby, nonetheless the company has responded to consumer demands for herbal baby products with a line of bedtime products that feature lavender and chamomile.
With so much time and trust built into Johnson’s Baby for new parents, the company continues to grow and remain relevant.