You really have to love how manipulative advertising can be. Exhibit A: this 1940s ad for laundry bluing. Laundry what, you query? Nevermind – it was a special extra ingredient that pre-dates Ultra Tide. Back to the ad – the ‘wow’ factor is bit overused, and one can imagine the harried housewife flipping through her magazine on a long-overdue coffee (or bourbon) break, and perking up in stages as she reads through the extensive laundry list (pun most heartily intended) of promises and perks that this ad claims. “Makes clothes dazzling, sparkling, with no extra bluing rinse.” WOW! “Safe for finest lingerie, even precious nylons” – (remember, there was a war going on and nylon was used solely for war materials – and even after the war, production of consumer goods took about a year to satisfy demand).” But if superior product performance wasn’t enough of a carrot, the bit of bling you could buy for 25¢ and a box top was sure to do the trick. “For your very own! A replica of the stunning jewel-piece Vivien Leigh wears in “Caesar and Cleopatra”…replica of actual jewelry given Cleopatra by Caesar to signify his love and devotion. Your Love Token of hope for married happiness, romance, love.” “Huge, dramatic – over 2 ¼ inches long – it’s breathtaking in its two-tone antique gold-colored finish.” YAY! Just the thing for wearing on the night shift at the munitions factory.
The Happy Housewife3 07 2014