Gypsy Creams

“health” Tag

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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Woman's Weekly / 18th June 1965

Women who could clearly remember the fashions of 1926 in 1965 must have been, at the very youngest, 50 when this was published. Oddly enough, I’ve just worked out that this group of women would have included my grandmother, which is something for me to ponder for the rest of the day.

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Harley Discs

Woman's Weekly / 26th March 1965

YES! Get yourself high and you too can fit in a nice dress! This article suggests that these pills were probably amphetamines, so presumably, if you didn’t have 20 shillings to spare once you came down, you put all the weight back on through eating normally, and, most likely, you put more on through comfort eating as well. The article linked to also gives details of modern diet pills, which don’t sound that pleasant either. As ever, eating sensibly and exercising regularly is the only proven long-term method of weight management, and you should talk to your doctor if you need support.

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The Milk Diet?

Woman's Weekly / 9th April 1965

In fact, I don’t envy her figure, mainly because she looks like a smug 13 year old, and that’s not my style. I found it curious that this is called a Milk Diet, because it doesn’t have an awful lot to do with milk at all, apart from it being the one comfort that you’re allowed during this week of misery. The milk is obviously there to replace the fat and calcium that you wouldn’t have otherwise, and although I think it’s likely that you would lose weight on this diet, it’s hardly a sensible long-term eating plan. Quite what they expected you to do after the week was up, I’m not sure: feel smug for a week and then realise you’d put it all back on?

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Woman's Weekly / 6th June 1969

Now here, ladieesssngentlemeeen, is a typical late ’60s family. The little girl in the big pants is my favourite, and I’m fairly sure that the same girl appears in this advert, although it could be her sister, given the different haircuts, and that the Elastoplast girl looks a bit older. What do you reckon?

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You can’t give a baby Carnation!

Woman's Weekly / 20th March 1965

You really can’t, y’know. The NHS say so. The main problem is that it’s cow’s milk, which shouldn’t be given to a baby under 1 year old, due to it not having the correct nutrients and being difficult for a baby to digest. Formula milk IS cow’s milk, but it’s specially treated so it fits a baby’s needs, which I’m pretty sure is more extensive than the milk being in ‘globules’. So this advert was really rather irresponsible! Horray! I found this fascinating article on weaning whilst researching for this post, which details some hair-raising ideas from the not-so-distant past!

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Get with it!

Woman's Weekly / 23rd May 1969

Come on! Live a little! Stick some cotton up your vag! Not the most positive of messages, is it?

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Woman's Weekly / 20th March 1965

This all raises the question: what WAS Mrs Earl of Lewisham doing before to strengthen her family’s teeth?

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Woman's Weekly / 16th May 1969

Ooh my, I can’t imagine little boys’ bottoms featuring in print ads nowadays. A shame, because all that does is increase the perception that they ARE sexualised, when most people don’t react like that to children. I’m rather taken with this little chap, because he looks like my boyfriend did when he was small. Aww.

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