The Ovaltine Girl and Her Advertising Journey

The Ovaltine Maid was an iconic symbol associated with Ovaltine since the 1920s.  Over the years, her style changed to keep up with the latest fashion trends of the time, while always retaining her signature red dress and basket of eggs. As the image of the Ovaltine Maid gained popularity, many people began to imitate her, and the Ovaltine brand launched more advertising campaigns in a similar style in relation to it. The image evolved from a single Ovaltine Maid to a broader Ovaltine Girl, representing the healthy spirit of Ovaltine products and the history and culture of Kings Langley, where they originated.
Next slide
In this online exhibition, we explore the world of the Ovaltine Maid through photos and moving stories, revealing the lasting impact of advertising.
The main event in August in 1970s Kings Langley was Fete Day, which was greeted with enthusiasm and sunshine. Three charming Ovaltine Maids added a delightful touch, seen here (image 1) leading a cow through the crowd, making the event memorable for all.
In a letter to the Ovaltine Employee Magazine of July 1963, John J.W. Brown, of S.E. London Food Division, shares the news that on a recent holiday his five-year-old daughter won a fancy-dress competition (image 2) dressed as ’Miss Ovaltine’, with an outfit crafted entirely from crepe-paper.
Taken from the Ovaltine Employee Magazine of September 1978.
Taken from the Ovaltine Employee Magazine of July 1963.
Next slide
IA stunning spectacle at the Watford Carnival 1976, the Ovaltine float was festooned. with the iconic Ovaltine Girls. Four Ovaltine models clinched the second prize in its class.

Taken from the Ovaltine Employee Magazine of August 1976.
Taken from the Ovaltine Employee Magazine of September 1977.
H.D. Hadley, shared an incident from his son’s wedding in Ovaltine Employee Magazine of October 1977. As his daughter-in-law was about to enter the church, a prominent billboard featuring an Ovaltine Girl advertisement formed the backdrop. 

Next slide
Taken from the Ovaltine Employee Magazine of November 1974.
At a trade show in 1974, Salesman Jack Parker and Area Manager Graham Wheeler notably dressed up as Ovaltine Girls, illustrating how the image of the Ovaltine Girl successfully expanded its visibility in the UK market.
Next slide

Ovaltine Girls in the World

Outside the UK, as part of Ovaltine's global marketing expansion, the Ovaltine Girl image was featured in advertising campaigns in several countries.
The image of the Ovaltine Girl was adapted to local cultural and artistic styles to suit the aesthetics and habits of consumers in each location.
This painting captures the vibrant atmosphere of a cricket match in the West Indies, reflecting the rich cultural tapestry of the region.

This painting depicts local residents immersed in the excitement of the game. It serves as a tribute to the community and its love for cricket.

Next slide
Designed for the Indian market, this advertisement features a woman, adorned in a colourful sari, pointing towards an Ovaltine tin. She blends the product into the cultural setting, painting a scenic backdrop.
In this strikingly crafted Greek-style poster, the Ovaltine Girl is surrounded by figures, bearing torches. Her presence is at once comforting and invigorating.  Symbolic items represent the wholesome ingredients of Ovaltine –barley, eggs, and fresh milk. This composition underscores Ovaltine's dedication to providing natural and nutritious products.
An Ovaltine Girl for the Indian market has a radiant and healthy appearance, subtly highlighting the health benefits associated with Ovaltine.
The Ovaltine Girl appears adorned in Greek-style attire, featuring what appears to be a wreath crowning her head and a radiant smile lighting up her face.

Next slide
In its quest to meet an expanding global market, and as a proud sponsor of regional and world-class sporting events, Ovaltine also developed advertising content about sport and adapted to changing fashion trends. The Ovaltine Girl shown here confidently wearing a tight yellow flat-front swimming costume not only captures the allure of summer and leisure, but also reflects the brand's understanding of the importance of keeping up with the latest trends.
Share your memories and become part of the cherished history of Ovaltine.

Ovaltine also advertised a refreshing cool drink through their Ovaltine Ice drinks for warmer climates.