My Favorite Vintage Halloween Ads

**This was the planned post for Throwback Thursday, but real life problems kept me away from computer. Sincerest apologies.**

Let’s visit the amazing yesteryears of Vintage Halloween advertising.

Jell-O Vintage ad circa 1920s

Jell-O has been around for a long time and was big into promoting its brand during the holidays. This is one of my favorites because it includes this awesome Hallowe’en poem.

Colgate ad circa 1920s

Another favorite from Colgate because of the Hallowe’en poem. Note the use of the old spelling of Hallowe’en, which dropped the apostrophe over the years.

Edison Phonograph ad circa 1920s

“No amusement of modern times equals it.” If makers only knew how successful their product would be. Phonographs were instrumental in helping Halloween become one of the biggest holidays in American history,, if for no more reason than their popularity at parties.

These ads reflect the dark orange and black style, which was popular back in the 1930-1940s.

Curtiss Candy Company owned Baby Ruth and Butterfinger among many others, when it was bought out by Standard in 1964, who later merged with Nabisco in 1981. Nabisco then sold off Curtiss brands to NestlΓ© in the 1990.

Brach’s has been making candy since 1904. They’re most famous for Candy Corn, but once upon a time, Brach’s was the go-to candy store for Halloween goodies. Their ads were simply amazingly drool-worthy, appealing to both adults and kids. Look at all that candy!

Speaking of adults, with Halloween parties all the rage well into the 1950s, beer makers made some nifty ads for Halloween.

During the 1950s, some ads featured lots of graphics and were quite wordy. What some may consider serious advertising fails today, make for some awesome vintage Halloween ads.

Crayola ad circa 1950s
Scotch Tape ad circa 1950s
7-Minit Fluffy Frosting ad circa 1950s

7-Minit was owned by 6 O’Clock Foods, Inc. and that’s about the only history we know about either.

More random vintage Halloween candy ads circa 1940s-1960s

It’s always been fashionable to make punch bowls outta pumpkins!

Sunkist Fruit Punch Halloween ads circa 1960s

Back in the day, people could trust drinking and eating right there on the front porch.

Kool Aid Halloween ad circa 1964

Okay, I’ll admit, I only love this ad because of the Headless Horseman. Is this too scary for advertising? Some might think so. People don’t like reminders of violence and disembodied heads is about as gruesome as it gets. Absolutely my favorite! BWAHAHAHAHA….

M&Ms Pumpkin Patch Mix candy ad circa 2007

Happy Halloween!

Throwback Thursdays: Vintage Halloween Cigarette Ads

Cigarette makers were some of the first to use Halloween in advertising. For at least a hundred years, people were fooled into thinking cigarettes didn’t taste like ashtrays.

ABC circa 1947

Famous actors and entertainers would personally vouch for products, back in the day when celebrities were thought to have integrity and such opinions could be trusted.

Old Gold circa 1950s

There was the disturbing common practice of real medical doctors declaring some cigarette brands healthier than others and even making claims that smoking was beneficial.

Old Gold took the high road and chose not to lie about selling products that kill people.

Lucky Strikes circa 1960s

What a waste of a good hat!

BH100 circa 1970s

Excess was king during the 70s. From cigarettes to Halloween costumes, everything was sexy.

Newport brands liked to show pretty young couples having a ball carving jack-o-lanterns and picking out pumpkins to show how romantic cigarettes can be. I guess the couple that smokes together, loses a lung together.

In the 80s, Camel made huge profits off its Joe Camel character and sexy ads selling cigarettes that made you look cool.

Kamel Reds circa 1990s

By early 90s though, the jig was up, whistle-blowers started coming forward about the lies big tobacco companies told the world about their filthy products and the print ads all but disappeared in a puff of smoke.

van-Gogh-skeleton-with-cigarette

So, whether we want to admit it or not, our favorite holiday definitely helped sell cancer sticks.

Throwback Thursdays: Vintage Halloween Store Ads

I’m not ashamed of my age nor to admit that I miss the old stores like K-Mart, F.W. Woolworth Co., and Toys ‘R Us during Halloweentime. K-Mart and Woolworth’s were like one-stop shopping. They had everything.

F.W. Woolworth Co circa 1960s

Up until their demise in the early 90s, I was weekly shopper. In fact, I used to work at the mall and went Woolworth’s every day during my lunch hour. They had some cool Halloween ads too.

F.W. Woolworth Co circa 1970s

Once the center in American lives, most of these department stores no longer exist.

Selling cheap Halloween costumes became big business in the 60s through the 70s and 80s. Most were made of highly flammable plastic. They tore easily and it was hard to see through the little eye holes. These days, costumes like that would get canceled before they were even loaded onto the truck, but they’re considered vintage Halloween antiques now. A rare, unopened, or one in pristine condition could be worth quite a lot of money.

Osco Drug Store

Osco Drug Store is still in business. I believe it’s part of Albertsons/CVS family now. Do you see those candy bar prices? Those were full candy bars too!

Moore & O’Neal circa 1920s

A few years ago, Tucson.com dug up old print ads from the 1920s through 1960s to prove that Halloween has always been a big celebration in Tucson. There were far too many to post here, so go check them out by clicking the picture below.

Goodmans print ad from feature article found at Tucson.com

I find it funny that people complain about the overcommercialization of Halloween, but these vintage ads prove stores have been cashing in on the Halloween craze since the 1920s.

Happy Halloween!

Throwback Thursdays – Vintage Halloween Ads

It’s no secret that advertising played a big part in making Halloween the $8 billion dollar industry it is today, but, did you ever see some of those vintage Halloween ads and say, what were they thinking? Here’s a few I really just had to question:

Cuz nothing says shoe polish like a scantily clad witch on Halloween. Is there even enough shoe to polish there? Is she supposed to ignore the creeper behind her just cuz he’s got nicely polished shoes? Did you even notice this was an ad for shoe polish?
Do tots buy more candy from sexy witches? Do sexy witches sell more candy to tots? Do moms need to be a sexy witch to hand out candy to tots? What is the message here?
Number one rule in advertising, know your audience, candy is for kids, but mommy does the buying, with daddy’s money, and daddies like sexy witches.
The health benefits play second fiddle to scaring off men with bad breath.
Ah, the good ole days when drinking carbonated sugary drinks made us skinny!
Coca-cola bringing the world together, very closely, like super close, too close, why are they so damn close?!
This is no brainer, we should carve pumpkins in our undies cuz our dresses might get dirty!