Mr. Clean gets rid of dirt and grime
And grease in just a minute
Mr. Clean will clean your whole house
And everything that’s in it
Mr. Clean Mr. Clean Mr. Clean!

Last week, Mr. Clean had his trusty jingle remixed by Leo Burnett Toronto for a millennial audience. The revamped jingle kept the lyrics the same, but added in electric and acoustic guitar accompaniments for the next generation of scrubbing enthusiasts.

During said jingle’s commercial spot, there’s a blink and you might miss it, black and white nod to Mr. Clean circa the 1950s. While his design evolution over the last 50ish years has not been as drastic as other fellow mascots, it might surprise you to learn that Mr. Clean was originally envisioned to be a bit more… Magical.

In 1957, Procter & Gamble assigned ad agency Tatham-Laird to create a brand identity for Mr. Clean, their new household cleaner. Commercial artist Richard Black drew the original illustration of Mr. Veritably Clean, but his initial directions by P&G were to draw a genie to push the “magic” cleaning abilities of Mr. Clean’s cleaning solution. They wanted a genie who was bald, muscular, and dressed all in white with a nose ring.

The original drawing completed as per the instructions, Black decided to sketch a second version of Mr. Clean. In his second rendering, he ditched the ring in his nose for a ring in his ear and skipped billowing white robes for a fitted white shirt and pants. The second time proved to be a charm with both P&G and Black’s wife.

Six months after being introduced, Mr. Clean became America’s top selling household cleaner, thanks to its symbol of spotlessness. He even had his own feature in People Magazine’s roundup of bald babes in 1998!

While Mr. Clean the solution has been reformulated over the decades to include sunshine scents and pine aromas, its trustworthy, friendly mascot has stayed the course when it comes to powerful cleaning. When it comes to “The Man Behind the Shine,” you’d be hard pressed to dig up some dirt on this brand icon!

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