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Supposedly the legendry Ghazal Singer Shri Jagjit Singh was the original singer of “Tandrusti Ki Raksha Karta Hai Lifebuoy, Lifebuoy Hai Jahan Tandrusti Hai Wahan”. Know the story of Lifebuoy in India

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LifeBuoy Company History

Lifebuoy was introduced by Lever Brothers in 1895 in the UK to stop cholera.

Sometime in 1951 or 1952, due to declining sales, Lever Bros. experimented with adding perfumes to the soap and made the changes permanent in 1954.

Lifebuoy is the world’s number one hygiene soap brand, sold in nearly 60 countries

Lifebuoy as Royal Disinfectant Soap

Lever discovered carbolic acid as he sought the perfect formula for soap that could combat germs and still be affordable to everyone.

Why lifebuoy soap is Red?

The soap was the first to use carbolic acid or phenol as an ingredient in their cleaning products.

This gave the soap its signature red coloring and a distinct medicinal odor.

It has been the flagbearer of ‘Tandurusti Ki Raksha’ of every Indian

In 1964, Lifebuoy and the creative team at Lowe Lintas devised a jingle ‘Tandurusti ki raksha karta hai Lifebuoy, Lifebuoy hai jahan tandurusti hai wahan’ which promised health and hygiene to consumers and promoted it via print, television as well and radio spots.

The soap Adapted itself to emerging markets unlike competitors

LifeBuoy initially sold as 30-gram basic soap in India and a more premium liquid soap in Malaysia. The brand tailored the sourcing, pricing, and pack size.

By 2020, our aim, through Lifebuoy, is to change the hygiene behavior of 1 billion consumers across Asia, Africa, and Latin America. One key focus is India, a country that has the highest number of children under five – over 380,000 a year – dying from diarrhoeal disease


Lifebuoy talked about health and hygiene and Indians appreciated its brand messaging

India is Lifebuoy’s top market.

Lifebuoy did a study in India which showed a significant increase in the frequency of handwashing with soap at a key occasion after people watched the adverts at high frequency.

Now you know why you see lot of lifebuoy ads

Read: The Torchbearers of Sustainable Fashion

A Question?

  • LifeBuoy was launched in UK to improve the sanitary conditions but by 1990s the conditions were long gone, and the brand had to shut shop
  • From Indonesia to India and from Saudi Arabia to Sri Lanka, Lifebuoy struck the same hygienic chord with consumers.
  • What would happen when India reaches the same hygiene standards. Would people still buy?

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A passionate writer and a business enthusiast having 6 years of industry experience in a variety of industries and functions. I just love telling stories and share my learning. Connect with me on LinkedIn. Let's chat...

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