Show Biz Hair

Great Day hair dye ad, Reader's Digest 1967

Ii seems that in 1967, guys were worried that if they colored their hair, they would seem too “flashy” or “show biz” according to this delightful ad from Reader’s Digest. On the other hand, they wanted to be young which meant unnaturally dark hair – even for former blonds, apparently. But help was at hand! For even “bankers, farmers, longshoremen, teachers and police officers” all used this stuff, Great Day, “without blushing.”

How about Cruella De Vil’s husband here? He doesn’t look so worried. I didn’t even know about him until now. She’s been keeping him on the down low! Wonder if he’s a banker or a longshoreman. I don’t think he’s a policeman. If he is, he really needs to start noticing what’s up at home with the puppies and his wife and everything.

I like the name of this stuff, too. Great Day. Use it and you will have one, I suppose. Too bad they didn’t call it Grey Day, that would be funny.

The whole ad keeps reassuring these poor, nervous guys that no one will notice if all of a sudden your hair changes color:

Amazingly, even though you’re very conscious of what you’ve done, experience has shown that most people don’t even notice the difference in color. Only the effect. “Say Charley, you look great. Did you lose weight or something?”

Or something. Yeah, they won’t notice that half your hair is shoepolish black, the other half is grey. No worries! They say that this is “a product that won’t embarrass you in any way.” I think we’re way past worrying about that now, really.

POP CULTURE ASIDE: Does anyone else think that this is Ted Knight, who played pompous news anchorman Ted Baxter on the Mary Tyler Moore Show in the 1970s? I’ll bet that this is just the sort of thing Ted Baxter would use on his hair, and he wouldn’t be in the least bit embarrassed about it either. “Hey Mare, you should use Great Day too! Look, you have some grey hairs!” And then they could all joke about Murray not needing to use it, because he was bald.