Hey, Good Lookin’–1962 Style

February 1, 2012

in Fashion

In Bombshells Norah, Mellie’s mother, forces her to endure a Toni home permanent the night before school starts. If you had one of these back in the day, you understand that the night before the first day of school was not the best planning. But, we forgive Norah. She has a lot on her mind. The question is, can Mellie?

The process is not pleasant: smelly lotion, tight rollers, more smelly lotion, more rollers, an hour under the hair dryer or a sleepless night in brush rollers. Then, the next morning was always a surprise. How did it turn out? Luckily, for Mellie her hair looks great, but that just permed smell follows her around all day. You don’t know what that smell is like? I really wish we had an app for that. But I can give a visual.

Of course, Mellie was not this happy about it.

Numerous beauty products were available in 1962, but not near the variety we have in 2012. Favorite brands like Maybelline, Cover Girl, and Revlon were well established household names at the time. In fact, Maybelline was one of the first companies to use a version of modern mascara applicator.

On the bus on that first day of school, Mellie’s friend, Stephanie, offers her sister’s lipstick for Mellie to try out. Girls in junior high generally weren’t allowed to wear make up then, and a swiped lipstick would be a popular item. Most likely Steph borrowed a Maybelline product from her sister, because Maybelline was among the popular drug store brands. Other easily available, inexpensive brands included Hazel Bishop and Revlon.

The teen look was fresh and clean as shown on the cover “Seventeen” magazine. This issue is September, 1962, perfect for back to school.

Norah, busy and on a budget, probably relied on her friendly Avon representative to supply her with her standard red lipstick, powder and some eye make up. Nothing terribly exciting for Norah.

But Lola, sassy-girl-about-town, would have loved Revlon’s tribute to Elizabeth Taylor’s Cleopatra look. Revlon developed a line of specialty products with themed packaging.

On every bathroom shelf you’d find trusty old Aquanet hairspray, Secret or Tussy deodorant, and talcum powder.

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