I was looking at the 1980 Sear’s Christmas Catalog on the Wishbook Flickr page when I found this toy set from Hasbro on page 548:
Here is the description:
Fresh ‘n Fancy Cosmetic Set by Hasbro
Create and explore the glamorous you! Everything you need to make lip gloss, eye shadow, cheek blush, nail polish, perfume. All ingredients are non-irritating, non-staining and non-toxic… they wash off with soap and water.
SET INCLUDES: Mirror, mixing tray, mixing container, beaker, funnel, gloss pots, tools, bottles for perfume and nail polish, instructions, folder of good grooming tips, labels, small decorative packages, jars, assorted ingredients.
This little cosmetic set is probably the reason that I love makeup even today. Despite my feminism, I have clung to the daily ritual of makeup, mostly because it feels like a little bit of creativity that I can do every morning. I’ve talked about it here before:
My mom was always so good about choosing toys that fostered creativity. I was able to mix scents to create my own perfume. I could mix colors to create a nail polish. I could create lip gloss that came in a color that no one else could have. I absolutely LOVED this toy and used up all the ingredients long before I used up the lip glosses, fingernail polishes and perfumes that I created with it.
If I remember correctly, the fingernail polish wasn’t like “real” fingernail polish. It created a plastic coating on my fingernails that could be pulled off in one piece. I didn’t need fingernail polish remover, I just needed to pull it off. Of course, because it wasn’t like grownup fingernail polish, I hated it instantly, but it didn’t matter because there were only two fingernail polish bottles, so it wasn’t the main part of this toy.
My FAVORITE was the perfume. I could create a perfume that smelled like roses, gardenia or lavender, but that wasn’t really exciting to me. I liked mixing the scents to try to create one of my own. I remember making a scent that I absolutely loved and when it was all used up, I couldn’t remember how I made it. It was a very important lesson on keeping good notes. Even today, I take the time to document every art project, fix it job or “hack,” so I can recreate it and write about it here. That was a habit that Fresh ‘n Fancy taught me at the tender age of eleven.
I guess I should send my mom an email thanking her for the AWESOME Christmas present, even though the gratitude is thirty years old.