Dr. Pincus, Shirley Temple, and the "Hollywood Smile"
BEFORE — Shirley Temple, age 8, went before the cameras — no veneers. She lost her baby teeth, just like any child, but was never photographed with any teeth missing.
AFTER — Dr. Pincus placed "Hollywood Veneers" on Shirley's front teeth. They were only temporary, and had to be removed daily when eating, chewing or sleeping.
In Memory of Charles Pincus, DDS (1904-1986)
As the year ends, I want to acknowledge my mentor, Dr. Charles Pincus, who passed away in September. He was a graduate of the University of Southern California Dental School, 1926. He was a true pioneer.
1938 — This magazine cover shows Shirley with her perfect Hollywood Smile, a la Dr. Charles Pincus.
Much has been written about bonding and porcelain veneers, which are relatively new. Bonding is 14 years old (as of time of this article); porcelain veneers have been in use only two years. We tend to take the new techniques for granted and forget what has gone before. Prior to the 1970s, the only quick way to improve the smile (without orthodontics or porcelain caps) was the use or "Hollywood Veneers". Dr. Charles Pincus was the individual responsible for inventing the "Hollywood Veneer", a removable snap-on cap that covered just the front of unsightly teeth or spaces.
With the advent of talking pictures in 1928, there was a need for actors who not only looked well, but spoke well. Hollywood began to import many stage actors from New York, but unfortunately many of them had decayed, missing or crooked teeth.
Dr. Pincus was called in as a special consultant by the Factor brothers (of Max Factor fame) and the Westmore brothers (movie makeup artists) to develop a means of correcting faulty smiles overnight, so the speaking actor would photograph well.
Charles Pincus was considered one of the best cosmetic dentists in the world. His patients included James Dean, Montgomery Clift, Alice Faye, Robert Taylor, Fanny Brice, Mae West, Joan Crawford, Edith Head, Barbara Stanwyck, Walt Disney, Jack Benny, Bob Hope, and even little Shirley Temple, among many others.
Not only was Charlie an excellent dentist, but he was also an excellent professor and a very enthusiastic alumni supporter of the USC Dental School ... talented, personable, humorous — a true gentleman. Dr. Charles Pincus will be missed.