Perfume in Magazines: Seventeen, August 1967

Seventeen mag, August 1967 cover and Chanel ad

After perusing a Seventeen magazine from August 1967, I’ve come away with three observations: First, plaid was in. Second, so were Orlon, Dacron, Dynel, Kodel, Avril Rayon, and something called Celanese acetate. Finally, teenagers sure had sophisticated taste in fragrance. This issue, labeled “Your World in the Greatest Fashion Issue Ever!” is a fat one, so let’s get started.

The first perfume ad is a two-pager for Chanel No. 5. It features a man in a skinny tie with a football in one hand touching the chin of a blond clad in plaid Orlon. Perfume is $8.50, and Eau de Cologne will set you back $3.50. “Caught…By the spell of Chanel,” it says. Four pages later is another Chanel ad, this one for No. 22 (“The perfume of romance”). A blond’s head is buried in fabulous heaps of lilies of the valley, roses, and jasmine. Just a few more pages in, we hit Lanvin Arpège Powdered Mist for $3.50 (“Promise her anything…but give here Arpège”). Pretty sophisticated, huh? Not a fruity floral in the bunch.

Let’s flip past the tanning ad featuring Johnson’s Baby Oil (hello, melanoma) to land on a gorgeously shot ad for Houbigant Chantilly. It shows the outline of a woman leaning over a faceted glass bottle of yellow fragrance, as if she were looking into a crystal ball. “Crystal gazing, 1967. No waiting for the future. This is crystal you can believe in. With enough Chantilly to shake your world.” Just a few pages later, Evyan advertises a beach and travel atomizer of White Shoulders, two ounces for $2.75. (I never would have thought of White Shoulders as a beach perfume, but I guess if Coty Sand & Sable can do it, why not?)

After a few pages of neon plaid, we come to a half-page ad for Jean Naté. “Tingle at the touch of Jean Naté,” the copy reads next to a blond emerging from a shower stall, where she appears to keep a fern the size of a German shepherd. More orange plaid, gold plaid, red checks, and we arrive at another Evyan ad, this one showing fancy bottles of White Shoulders, Most Precious, and Great Lady nestled in satin.

More plaid (Hey Seventeen. Scotland called and wants its plaid back) is relieved at last by a lovely spread of B. Altman cocktail dresses, each with kicky ruffled trim at the hem. And then four pages of B. Altman checks and plaid. And then a full-page ad for Caron Fleur de Rocailles (“Caron is the kind of French every girl understands”). This ad focuses on a large, heart-shaped face tilted toward the perfume bottle, with the charcoal-lined eyes glancing with suspicion toward the orange plaid pants on the adjoining page.

Dacron advert

An ad for wool claims a spot amidst the polyester, and it lists regional department stores, many of which have since vanished: Woodward & Lothrop, Carson Pirie Scott, Meier & Frank, Kaufman’s. On the next page, Debutogs proclaims, “Dacron. It ought to be a law.”

At last, another perfume ad, this one for Bourjois Evening in Paris. (“You’re there—when you wear Evening in Paris”). A loafer and plaid-suit-clad blond leans into a dapper gent resembling Bobby Sherman. Notre Dame looms in the background. Continuing the French theme, in the corner of a big spread for Bobbie Brooks separates in “billiard green, squash yellow, and radiant red” is a tiny gold atomizer of Bobbie Brooks C’est Wild fragrance. Anyone heard of that one?

A charming candid photo of a woman eating cake while she relaxes with her fishing tackle says, “Aren’t you wearing Tweed?” (I need to do a review of Lenthéric Tweed someday.) Tweed was marketed to the outdoorsy gal, but for the naughtier teen, we have the classic Dana Tabu ad with the maestro clutching the pianist in a passionate kiss. In a more modern ad, a couple in an amusement park shill Cashmere Bouquet (“From Monterey to Montreal join the swing to Cashmere Bouquet”).

Now the perfume ads have thinned out as we hit a clump of ads for panty girdles, more plaid, and killer pink slippers with a jeweled puff on the toe. But wait! Here’s a classic ad for Christian Dior Diorissimo (“So very you…So very Dior!”) with an illustrated hand lifting a bottle from its houndstooth box. Now more panty girdles and a curious ad for a wiglet. We’ve hit the fashion spreads, so I don’t expect as many perfume ads.

Excuse me a few minutes while I read an article about The Monkees...fascinating, but I’ll stick to my Rolling Stones. Here’s an article about over-the-counter medications that recommends aspirin for menstrual cramps (let’s hear it for today’s ibuprofen, my friends) and warns against Dexedrine and “other pep pills.” And here’s a recipe for Spam Beaneroo. An ad for Wonder Bread reminds girls that “boys love to eat,” so they should stock up on Wonder Bread sandwiches. (Frankly, I’d rather lunch on Spam Beaneroo.)

Now we’ve reached the back of the book, where ads for engagement rings, china patterns, and hope chests abound. I guess it’s only logical, given that your Wonder Bread sandwiches have landed you a man. But here’s an ad for Nina Ricci L’Air du Temps (“So young, so slim, so French it’s pure amour at $4”). And another for Fabergé Brut where the bottle still has its darling silver-tone necklace (“If he has any doubts about himself, give him something else”).

Now here’s an odd ad: it’s for Modess, which brands sanitary napkins, right? Yet there no hint of the curse in sight. Instead, the ad features a middle-aged woman in a full gold brocade hostess gown with a floor-length matching coat. The ensemble weighs ten pounds if it weighs an ounce.

Only a few more pages now. And what have we here? The exact same Tabu ad that ran earlier. Then a quarter-page ad for English Leather (“After shave…After shower…After hours”), including a tube of English Leather hair dressing. Then a faded quarter-pager for Yardley powder (“Oh! The POWder of Luv”). Then the classic “talent appraisal free” ad where you send in a drawing of a clown or a horse’s head and they tell you if you’re good enough to qualify for their mail order art instruction school out of Minneapolis.

And…that’s it. Some gold plaid pants from Ship’n Shore, and we’ve reached the end. My conclusion about 1967? You can keep the Orlon and panty girdles, and I’ll take the perfume.

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  1. Kevin says:

    Wow…judging by that cover, teens aged fast in the 60s…those girls look 30! Ha!

    • Holly says:

      Yes! We aged fast, but we have never aged beyond 30!

      • Carry says:

        Holly, I love you for that! And you are right!

      • Angela says:

        You and me both, sister.

    • Angela says:

      All those girdles, wiglets, and acrylic fibers must age a gal!

  2. Holly says:

    Thank-you so much! Reading this was so much fun for me and I really appreciate the time you took to do it.

    • Angela says:

      Thank you! I was a bit worried since it was such a long post…

  3. Carry says:

    Don’t you laugh about these times, ye young ‘uns!

    Oh, the memories (thank you so much for triggering them, Angela): I’ve had one of these tartan very mini-skirts back then, they were all the rage and they are very much in demand again this season – to my nostalgic glee :-)

    Though I was quite a few years younger than 17 in 1967, but I tried my very best to look older (to get into clubs, discos they were called then). I think I invented smoky eyes just to look as if I had a life full of sex, drugs and rock’n’roll (neither happened though to my dismay ). I actually carefully painted dark circles under my eyes …

    As for perfume: In 1967 or thereabouts I’ve got the latest release from Lancome from my dad as a birthday present: Climat – the tiny iconic bottle with pure perfume. It was my very first perfume and I kept the bottle until I moved abroad where it got lost.
    Still in my teens I moved on to Miss Dior, the real one not that marmelady stuff (Cherie) they sell today under this name, shortly afterwards came Diorissimo.
    Then in my early twenties I discovered Opium (the closest I came to ‘drugs’). And boy it’s still my all time favourite though only now and then. It isn’t the same anyway.

    So we Sixities-teens had a good perfume taste. No doubt about that.
    Just forget the fashion-sense: tartan skirts and those smokey (or rather smudgy) eyes …

    But it all comes back, doesn’t it?

    • Angela says:

      What a fabulous progression of fragrances you wore! They all are real “personality” fragrances, too, in my mind. You can wear a lot of plaid when you smell that good.

      • Carry says:

        Thank you, considering what is on offer today it was quite a sophisticated choice of perfume for a teen, though unwittingly.

        There weren’t any pop-celebrity perfumes then. And there weren’t any niche perfumes we knew about -or could afford.

        And yes, even in a rayon minny mouse pajama you feel fabulous with a great perfume!

        • Angela says:

          Now I really want some Minnie Mouse pajamas!

  4. chandler_b says:

    I just adjusted those prices for inflation and the Chanel parfum translates to around sixty two current American dollars … Us modern fume heads are getting ripped off big time! :)

    • ggperfume says:

      I so agree!

    • Angela says:

      Even for only a quarter ounce, that’s a deal!

  5. ggperfume says:

    What, no Yardley Oh! de London?

    I seem to remember that no22 model as a redhead. Maybe I just felt that she ought to be one.

    • Angela says:

      The ad in my magazine is black and white, but a redhead would be so striking among the white flowers!

    • Jonette says:

      You’re right. The model was Jean Shrimpton, a British model who was in a lot of fashion and hair ads. She was often photographed with her glorious red hair spread out. Sigh. I wanted her hair.

      • Angela says:

        Thank you! I should have known that. What a fabulous ad.

  6. AnnieA says:

    Wow, and this issue came out during the Summer of Love…

    • Angela says:

      Yes, the summer of love. When girls handed out the wonder bread sandwiches freely and waited for their engagement rings. And they hadn’t even made it to college yet.

  7. CobraRose says:

    Ah, I was in seventh grade then. I remember the “Modess…because” ads, which puzzled me when I was younger. And an ad for L’Heure Bleue–imagine that being marketed to teens today.

    • Angela says:

      Oh wow. L’Heure Bleue is so difficult–and beautiful. It’s hard to imagine teenagers being tuned into it. By the time I was of perfume-buying age, my choices were Babe and Love’s Baby Soft. (But I did get around to L’Heure Bleue eventually!)

  8. juicejones says:

    I think I can explain the plaid. I believe it was a response to the movie Goodbye, Mr. Chips. As I recall that fall was all about looking like an English school girl. I am sure I had that issue. I know I had, and wore, Chantilly, Oh! de London, Evening in Paris, Tweed, Heaven Scent. I had the bug even then. Lipstick was either Revlon Sugar and Ice or Frosted Malt. And the girdles? Couldn’t wait to get one and wrestle all 70 lbs into it. Mom would pop for Hanes Silk stockings in those in those little plastic envelopes. It was a sweet time to learn about the transition to womanhood. And, Bobby Sherman? As I recall he played a role in that transition, too.

    • Angela says:

      Yes, Mr. Chips. Plus, this was the “off to college” issue, so it even makes more sense. You paint a great capsule picture of the time, too. I can practically hear The Monkees in the background.

      • juicejones says:

        I read this issue while visiting my cousin in Philadelphia. Lots of beautiful colleges back there. I felt like a big girl! We were just coming out of a summer of non – stop Ode to Billy Joe with an occasional Apple, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie. I still love both of those songs.

        • Angela says:

          And now my next stop is to find youtube videos of those songs, and I’ll have the complete scene, thanks to your terrific description.

          • juicejones says:

            You will enjoy both. Keep in mind that Bobby Gentry was 22 when she wrote and sang Ode. That summer it was the only song you heard. Nothing like it before or since. Haunting.

  9. nozknoz says:

    Love this post! I remember when everyone was girdled up and all that innuendo was so thrilling! I saw ads like the ones you describe but I preferred Glamour and a more psychedelic magazine call eye. Miraculously, I still have a few eye magazines from 1968-1969. Not a girdle in sight, but we’ve got makeup, such as Revlon ‘Natural Wonder’ the ‘Unlipstick’ (remember those pale, frosted lips?), Coppertone QT, and a Revlon Frosted Face Gleamer (like a blush stick, but pale and frosty), not to mention Noxzema, Breck and Clairol Summer Blonde (“Say the sun did it.”)

    Perfume ads include Coty Muguet des bois, Jean Naté Friction pour le Bain, Eau de Crepe de Chine, Revlon Intimate and My Sin (with a photo of an imperious and somewhat frightening black cat).

    There were also ads for Smith-Corona portable typewriters, Moby Grape’s album Grape Jam and Simon and Garfunkle’s Bookends. Articles featured the I Ching, Janis Joplin, how to avoid the draft, the love guide to Europe, the inner crisis of black youth, Buckminster Fuller, and a review by Rex Reed of a film starring Catherine Deneuve and her ill-fated sister. A poster of Jimmy Hendrix was enclosed. And, oh yeah, that “Boy Trap,” Wonder Bread. ;-)

    • Angela says:

      Oh wow! Hang on to that eye magazine–it sounds like an afternoon of solid gold reading, and so much cooler than Seventeen!

  10. Omega says:

    They classy, unlike whatever is on today’s 17 mag..Miley bumpin with her tongue out or whatever…:p.

    • Angela says:

      In this magazine, you can definitely see the thread that leads back to the 1950s.

  11. Ida says:

    Wow, fantastic. I think we are all doing a side-by-side comparison with today’s 17 mag – and rolling our eyes.

    • Angela says:

      I admit that I haven’t looked at a new Seventeen in ages, but I wouldn’t have high hopes for it. The eye magazine mentioned above, though….that sounds fabulous.

  12. annemarie says:

    But what is Spam Beanaroo? Spam and baked beans cooked together? Man, that would sit like cement in the old tum.

    This is a great post, and I’m so enjoying people’s memories. I was just two in 1967.

    • Angela says:

      Well, the Spam Beanaroo photo showed a stoneware casserole full of beans with slices of spam laid out in a star pattern on top. It certainly might sit like cement, but my fear would be a rather more fragrant aftermath.

  13. Jonette says:

    Angela, I loved this! What a trip down memory lane! I was a fervent reader of Seventeen and also Glamour. Glamour magazine used to produce a fantastic samples kit every summer. I used to order it. My favorite was like a small purse in the form of a watermelon slice. These kits contained samples of cosmetics and perfumes and made me a customer of quite a few products! I still remember the Bain d’or bath oil that smelled so heavenly. I bought it a number of times, and even posted here on NST looking for the brand. I recently discovered the brand was Helene Curtis.

    The back cover of Seventeen usually featured an ad for Breck Shampoo and was beautifully drawn to feature a very realistic portrait (usually of a blonde).

    • Jonette says:

      Oh, and how I loved the scent of Cashmere Bouquet! They sometimes sold gift sets with cologne to accompany the talc. I wish I knew what the major notes were, but maybe my nose is so sophisticated these days that I’d dislike it.

      • annemarie says:

        Yes, maybe. Sometimes it’s better not to go back.

      • Angela says:

        What a clever name for a scent, though. Today it would probably pack a wallop of cashmeran.

    • juicejones says:

      I’m guessing there was some Bonne Bell Ten O’ Six in that kit!

    • Angela says:

      I love the sound of the watermelon slice kit!

  14. Jonette says:

    I do remember the name Bonne Bell, but can’t recall anything else about it. I think I actually got my original sample of Lanvin’s My Sin this way. I fell in love with it and had to buy a bottle!

    • Angela says:

      Isn’t it amazing that My Sin would be in a packet of samples for young women? Today it would probably be easy-to-sniff celebrity scents.

  15. platinum14 says:

    What a great laugh!
    A few years ago, at my aunt’s cottage I found a pile of those late 60′ magazines, and you’re right: Plaid was everywhere! Decorations magazines were even worse! Everything was plaid or orange. LOL
    For me it was all the Virginia Slims, Capri, Kool, Eve (with the pretty floral design) cigarette ads that were a real shocker.

    • Angela says:

      I like plaid. A lot. And yet, this magazine out-plaided even me! I can’t imagine having a plaid household.

  16. Celestia says:

    I was 17 in 1967. Colleen Corby was the beautiful model in all the magazines. My mother wore Evening in Paris; my dad wore Hai Karate!
    I remember having an Avon solid perfume called Here’s My Heart. It came in a metal container with faux petit point on the top. My boyfriend loved it. When we reconnected 17 years later, he became much enamoured of Angel products and bought me 3 items at a time.
    The skirts got shorter and pantihose had barely been invented (by a sadistic male probably). We wore tiny useless girdles with garters.
    My uniform at work was made of crimpelene. It was a mock sailor top and navy blue skirt plus red beret because I used to give the whale shows at the aquarium. Thankfully the whales are no longer kept there.
    Being a case of arrested development, I then fell hard for David Cassidy.

    • Angela says:

      What a story! I can see it all, too–the crimpelene sailor suit, the Avon bottle, and even the David Cassidy (and I think I still know all the words to “I woke up in love this morning”).

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