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KatieJ
05-01-2012, 05:30 PM
I need some help finding out what men's colognes were available in the late Forties and the Fifties in the US.

I know about Old Spice and Bay Rum. Were there any others? I remember my Dad had some cologne called Nine Flags - nine separate little bottles of fragrances named after different countries. I remember him having that in the Sixties, though. His International Man of Mystery phase :tongue

Any thoughts would be great, it's not a big plot point, but different scents are important in my stories for some reason....

Layla Nahar
05-01-2012, 06:35 PM
I found this:
http://www.shopwiki.com/wiki/Classic-Colognes#Forties+and+Fifties

it has Old Spice, as expected, but some others.

mirandashell
05-01-2012, 07:35 PM
I wasn't aware men wore perfume back in the Fifties.....

KatieJ
05-01-2012, 07:49 PM
Layla, delicious! Thanks.

... lemon, lavender, carnation, cedarwood and leather... Yummy, now I really wish I could make soap and cologne!




I wasn't aware men wore perfume back in the Fifties.....
That's cause you're just a young whippersnapper! :D

mirandashell
05-01-2012, 07:58 PM
Err no....

It's because where I'm from they didn't! Most working class men couldn't afford perfume!

alleycat
05-01-2012, 08:00 PM
A lot of men back then didn't use cologne, but did slap on aftershave.

I'm not sure why. I later discovered that aftershave stung like hell. It was about 80% alcohol.

mirandashell
05-01-2012, 08:01 PM
Cologne, aftershave.... it's all perfume

Priene
05-01-2012, 08:03 PM
Err no....

It's because where I'm from they didn't! Most working class men couldn't afford perfume!

My uncle Tony did, and he was from Gateshead.

Shadow_Ferret
05-01-2012, 08:04 PM
After shave is an astringent. I think it's for sanitizing the fresh wound you just created on your face from scraping off a layer of skin. The scent in after shaves evaporates as quickly as the alcohol.

alleycat
05-01-2012, 08:06 PM
My father (who is from that generation) used Old Spice aftershave or something called Aqua Velva (this was in the sixties, I don't know whether it was available in the fifties).

He was a machinist--who are not exactly "dandies".

Bufty
05-01-2012, 08:23 PM
Brut - that was more of a perfume than an aftershave.

If I recall correctly 'Splash it all over' was the marketing slogan in the UK.

Think it was around in the fifties.

KatieJ
05-01-2012, 08:28 PM
Err no....

It's because where I'm from they didn't! Most working class men couldn't afford perfume!

No offense intended. My father was a sailor, not exactly ritzy. My grandfathers were a machinist and a fireman and they had their bottles of bay rum and Old Spice.

Jamiekswriter
05-01-2012, 08:52 PM
My Dad wore Old Spice and English Leather. I also remember him telling me he slicked up his hair into a duck's ass (?) with pomade. It was pink, but I didn't think it had a scent.

Oh and he was a machinist too, later a plumber.

My Grandfather (a farmer) washed up with LAVA soap and some foul smelling orange thing. If I remember the name I'll post it.

ironmikezero
05-01-2012, 09:00 PM
FWIW, Bay Rum and Old Spice were staples in barber shops in the US since before WWII; not much changed since then. Those scents were the hallmarks of having a shave with a straight razor - a culturally acceptable symbol of masculinity.

It was the advent and pervasive spread of television in the post -war era that spurred advertisers into a frenzy for products the public didn't even know they needed; cologne of various new scents for the common man represented a bold new market. It really gained strength in the '60s. Today the fragrance industry (antiperspirant, deodorant, perfume, cologne, etc.) is colossal on a world wide scale.

mirandashell
05-01-2012, 09:51 PM
No offense intended. My father was a sailor, not exactly ritzy. My grandfathers were a machinist and a fireman and they had their bottles of bay rum and Old Spice.


None taken, Katie. I'm just not used to being called a whippersnapper any more! LOL!

I'm sure some blokes did wear it back in the fifties but I wouldn't think it would be many. Fifties is my dad's generation and he put quite a few things on his hair to get a DA. But perfume not so much.

It could also be a cultural thing. It might have been more widespread in America.

KatieJ
05-02-2012, 03:17 AM
Yeah - I was thinking it might have been more of an American thing that a British one, too.

Thanks, ironmikezero, I was thinking about those barbershop bottles. In our hometown, the barber was "Fuzzy" Frizzell, and he kept personal bottles of bay rum and Old Spice for regular customers ;)

Steve Collins
05-02-2012, 05:37 PM
I know Acqua Di Parma was a strong favorite with David Niven, Bogart and Cary Grant back in the day. Beautiful fragrance but expensive.