Gypsy Creams

“health” Tag

Too Much Bother?

Woman / 25 December 1965

I can only presume that this campaign was in response to consumer research, but I must admit that I’m puzzled. Surely, if you’re already being kept up by a bunged-up kid, rubbing some Vicks on their chest isn’t THAT much of a hardship?

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Sweet-Eatin’ Kelloggs

Woman's Realm / 15 July 1961

Nope, not an April Fool, but a reminder of how times have changed!

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Remington Shavers

Men Only / July 1950

Blimey, I honestly can’t find anything to really object to in this advert. This bloke actually seems to *like* his wife…

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Men Only / July 1950

Now, these ads really WERE written by drunkards, weren’t they? “Cheer up!” and “THIS IS THE GIN” indeed.

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Men Only / July 1950

Well, it’s not quite as awful as this corker from Amplex, but how fascinating to see men’s grooming as closely scrutinised as women’s, so early on in the development of deodorant. Naturally, the approach is to appeal to men’s ambition, rather than whether their very existence is causing offence to others, but the message is clear; high-ranking men might sweat the same as a spot welder, but they’re not allowed to show it.

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No Stains Here!

Woman's Weekly / 4th July 1969

White. The brave woman’s choice. Although tampons are certainly less cumbersome than other methods of sanitary protection, it doesn’t protect against other symptoms, such as pain, tiredness and irritation with men making jokes about PMT. Mind you, the irritation with men lasts all month round…

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Hilarious Health Claims of Yore

Woman's Weekly / 30th April 1965

I don’t know for sure whether Lucozade was regularly recommended for an upset stomach by the medical profession in the past, but my mother certainly gave me Lucozade when I was sick as a child. However, the Wikipedia entry states clearly that it’s not recommended for sodium and electrolyte replacement.

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The Secret Painkiller

Woman's Weekly / 14th May 1965

I’ve written about Phensic before, but I find their code for period pain quite fascinating. No wonder so many people were confused about sex and periods, if the only references made were as heavily veiled as this.

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One Ovary

Woman's Weekly / 16th April 1965

Nowadays, expectant mothers can drown in a sea of advisory books (some of which cause more noise than others), but back in 1965, it seems that getting information could be a real problem. Although traditionally, mothers could rely on family networks for information and support, this information wasn’t always reliable. It’s a good thing that this advice column existed, but the advice given for post-natal depression is of the one-step-forward-two-steps-back variety. Yes, there’s an acknowledgement that the condition exists, but there’s also the dangerous assertion that it’ll go away by itself and the glib wish of good luck. However, it’s not surprising, because as the linked article states, post-natal depression is still not fully understood, over 45 years later.

Another indicator of just how times have changed is the letter about having a left-handed son; although the advice is correct, just the fact that the mother felt compelled to ask shows how long prejudice about being left-handed remained in British society. Also, the idea that a woman would go through surgery to remove an ovary and NOT ask questions about how it would affect her fertility shows the woeful lack of confidence that some women had when dealing with the medical profession, as well as how no-one dealing with this woman felt the need to discuss this issue with her. Luckily, we’ve made progress with this in the last 45 years as well.

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Angiers Junior Aspirin

Woman's Weekly / 26th March 1965

Blimey Nora. Somehow, I don’t think there was an equivalent advert in Playboy questioning men’s fatherhood skills. Despite the wider range of men’s magazines available nowadays, there still aren’t, but women are still fed a good spoonful of guilt in adverts aimed at them. Why do we put up with it?

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