Here’s an interesting history of pinups in advertising! Showing pictures of billboards from the 1800s-1950s, with a focus on pretty girls in beer advertisements.
The next page shows samples of pretty women used to advertise books and, the latest thing, record album covers. Even classical music “moves off the shelves” faster when an attractive woman is pictured on it!
Here is an interesting history of tobacco advertisements using pretty women and pinups as bait, and to gain broader social acceptance of smoking cigarettes! To explain changes in tobacco advertising, you have to take a historical perspective, which this article explains best. Briefly the history of tobacco ads (according to this 1953 article):
Advertising to women, by attractive women! Here are some shapewear and corset ads, with a historical perspective. Gilda Grey and “other famous actresses” endorsing a fat reducing cream in 1923. Gypsy Rose Lee endorsing an electric shaver. Warner Brother’s Coraline Corsets of the 1880s(the corset alone was enough to sell it), versus the more straight fronted corseted shape of 1900 (this advertisement with pretty women) in an ad for Armorside Corsets. Finally, an ad for the “modern” 1950s girdle with stockings and garters which flattened both front and bottom, and could be best illustrated in a photograph.
Enjoy these pinup pictures of Marilyn Monroe, declared “The All American Pinup” by the 1953 issue of Cheesecake – An American Phenomenon. Jane Russell said that “Marilyn is the most female girl I know”, and her only flaws were “a slight thickness behind the knees”.
The next page declares that “American business will spend close to $1,000,000,000 in advertising alone. At least one out of every three advertisements will feature a girl, who is bound to be pretty, shapely, and appealing.
Women’s changing fashions and shapes thru the 1900s! This first page quotes a skit about womens’ changing fashions from 1903-1953 written by Lois Long of the New Yorker and performed on “The American Road” by Mary Martin. Following that are production stills of Miss Martin performing her skit in various outfits representing the major fashion trends of the first half of the 20th century. Doesn’t it seem like every era declares itsself the one of the “emancipated clear eyed career girl”?
Then… and article about women in television commercials and television advertising (“bringing glamor to household appliances”).
How did the term “cheesecake” pinup originate? Origins of cheesecake, and the first pinup model and cheesecake photograph. An article about the history of American pinup.
Honestly, the best thing about these pages are the advertisements. These pages contained a small ad for maternity corsets, which I found particularly interesting.
Also advertised were canned sardines, The Alaska Freezer, Jello, Coffee Jelly, Maternity Apparel, Karo Syrup, Hair Dye, and a variety of “Make Money from Home” ads.