Pursettes ads: September
1972 (letter testimonial) - August 1974
(cartoon story) - October
1974 (cartoon story) - February 1974
(cartoon story) - August
1973 (letter testimonial) - 1975 (cartoon
story) - undated
See an actual Pursettes compact and a real
box of Pursettes
and the tampon itself.
And see famous people, some under twenty, in
menstrual products advertising.
Pursettes menstrual tampon ad, September
And a discussion of letter
This is a typical appeal to
teenage girls for a company
selling its tampons to a young
market. It's hard to believe that
this was written without an adman
or adwoman holding her hand.
Note "Carol's" concern about her
"membrane," her hymen, a
concern right from the beginning
in tampon advertising, as well as
in doctors' examinations of
teenagers and younger girls. Note
also the salutation, "Sirs."
Ever since at least the last
century people have wondered about
of testimonials like
this, and it was a concern of the
opponents of Lydia
Pinkham's Vegetable Compound
and other patent medicine
companies. In fact, after Mrs.
Pinkham's death, a second Mrs.
Pinkham supposedly answered
people's inquiries, although it
was actually a staff of women who
gave already prepared replies
(read one here,
from 1910) to common questions.
That increased concern about the
readers' letters themselves.
Readers sometimes received free medicine
and money to have their pictures
taken for company
advertising in Pinkham ads. There
were even brokers who dealt in
letters praising patent medicines,
although that company denied using
The Pinkham company very
successfully used users'
letters in their newspaper
advertisements, often correcting
grammar, etc., and had files of
The ad below is from September
file because I want you to be
able to read the writing.
© 1998 Harry Finley. It is illegal to
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