Koko for the hair was made in London, England by a
firm called Koko Maricopas Ltd. It first became available around
1888 and was still being sold in 1915.
The claims made for Koko included the "eradication
of scurf" and "will positively stop hair from falling
out and prevent it turning prematurely grey. Will certainly increase
the growth of the hair, and if consistently used will make it bright,
soft, and wavy."
The British Medical Association analyzed the Koko
preparation and it contained 94% water, 3% alcohol, 2% glycerine
along with trace amounts of borax and formaldehyde.
Advertisements were extensive, but inevitably actually
said very little. Testimonials were a common method of advertising
with Koko "recruiting" famous names including the Greek
royal family to support their product. The special offer in the
advert below shows enticements to buy scam products have been around
for a long time.
In addition, Koko adverts would try to play the honest
broker saying "The strong assertions of interested sellers
of preparations cannot be relied on, and testimonials, as a rule,
cannot be safely taken as genuine unless the position of the writer
places him or her above suspicion. We often think that the public
must be sick of seeing the eternal - this is the best - attached
to every conceivable article which is offered for sale; and for
this reason we usually refrain from saying much about Koko, leaving
it to our illustrious patrons to speak of its good qualities".