Everyone knows the Coppertone brand of sunscreen and many of us used it as kids and still do. I remember advertisements and commercials of the little pig-tailed Coppertone girl and the puppy tugging at her bathing suit bottom to reveal her tan line. In exploring the history of Coppertone Sunscreen, I found there to be a lot of disagreement about who was the first Coppertone girl, with many folks all claiming it was their Grandma or friend or in one case claiming the girl then was played by their now manicurist. The puppy seems to have always been played by a Cocker Spaniel. I also discovered some controversial history when it was shown that the company's initial ad featured the profile of a Native American and at one time their slogan, "Don't be a Paleface" was changed to the milder, "Tan, don't burn."It is also interesting, say some folks, the evolution of the little girl who was originally shown with her bare bottom exposed by the displaced bathing suit and in subsequent redrawings, the bathing suit remains in place. It seems to me the idea was to show the contrast of how tan you could be by using Coppertone. Without the contrasting bare cheek and distinct bronze tan line, the ad was just showing a girl and a puppy playing around. Ad value aside, and for no reason relating to the product, the company, or the advertisement's history, when Winnie was a puppy, I referred to her as my
Coppertone puppy for her red-bronze color. Winnie's reddish color has faded now to a creamy yellow with red and black undertones.
Winnie loves to lounge in the sun but she doesn't use sunscreen. There is no bronzing, no tan lines and no controversial or interesting history here. I miss the copper color now but Winnie will always be my Coppertone Puppy.