How to be Pretty – 1940’s Guide for High School Girls
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How to be Pretty – 1940’s Guide for High School Girls


Good morning girls I’m going to talk to
you this morning about the way you look Now I’ve heard it said that we women
attach too much importance to our appearance. But that isn’t true. After all
the way we look exert so much influence on the way we feel and on the way other
people feel about us that it really is very important. When I talk about good
appearance or good grooming or looking your best You probably think immediately of clothes or hairstyle or makeup. Well I
realize that those things are especially interesting to you and they are
important and I am going to talk about them. But please remember that they are
just really the trimmings, just like the icing on a cake.
If the icing is very good then that’s fine. But if the cake itself isn’t good
you’ll soon lose interest in the icing. So let’s start with the cake and come
back to the trimmings later. Basically of course, good health and intelligent
physical care are the foundations of all beauty. We all want a lovely skin, shining
eyes, a beautiful smile and loads of pep. But we can’t have them, except in a
healthy clean body and I mean clean ! Remember you can’t have good looks
without soap and water. There’s no substitute for the daily bath as a
groundwork for glamour. Brilliant teeth need brushing. Gleaming hair means
frequent and thorough shampooing. Keep that air of freshness by using a
deodorant regularly. It’s a shortcut to social security. Sleep comes next to
cleanliness as a beauty base and I mean sleep. Not just go to bed if that means
sitting up writing letters or listening to music. I’ve seen lots of sparkling
eyes and good complexions sacrificed to swing records at bedtime.
Mind you I’m all for music and it’s place. But there is a lot of sound sense in that
old expression – beauty sleep. So snap out that light early enough
every night to get eight or nine hours of this most effective beauty treatment.
And then there’s this business of eating It worries me to see that so many girls
think a balanced diet consists of soda pop and a sandwich or a big gooey Sunday.
Let’s remember what we were taught in home economics about a well-balanced
diet. Meat, cheese, eggs or fish. Milk butter, bread, fresh fruits, especially
citrus fruits. Green and starchy vegetables in proper proportion and of
course the sweets. And please go easy on fried foods. Beautiful skin, vitality, fluffy
hair. All the things you want, begin with a balanced diet. So watch it girls, it pays big dividends. Then there’s exercise, preferably outdoors. And when I say exercise, many of you may think of work. Well a little work as a helpful
beauty hint . But so is outdoor play I’ll leave it to your own conscience
whether you work in the garden, ride a bike, play ball, hike swim or ski. And try
to spend some time every day outdoors developing the grace that comes from
toned up muscles and a complexion that goes with good circulation. And even the
ordinary things that you do every day can help to make you more graceful. But
none of you do them like this. Walking up stairs reaching up to a high shelf
dusting, all can be good body conditioning if you use your muscles to do them
vigorously, instead of slouching through them. I’d like to speak to you please Miss
Stuyvesant. Go ahead, I want you to ask questions ! Well I guess I have a round face and I wear my hair the way you said I shouldn’t and I don’t see how things like that and posture and
mannerisms and the other things will make a girl more popular if she’s not
pretty to begin with. Sometimes I could shake you girls when you worry so much about being pretty or not being pretty as though prettiness were a woman’s only
attraction. If you’d spend just one month doing everything I talked about to make
the most of your appearance, you wouldn’t need to worry about being pretty or
popular. I wish that I could wave a magic wand, to show you what the difference
would be. Presto like that ! Why it does work. You will be prettier.
You will be more popular.

About James Carlton

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100 thoughts on “How to be Pretty – 1940’s Guide for High School Girls

  1. Incredible. In the US there was a guide on how to look pretty. In the Netherlands we were rebuilding destroyed neighbourhoods and still lacked many basic goods after the hunger winter of 1944/45. Honestly sometimes I forget how different the post-war years were for different countries.

  2. When she started talking about that makeup/hair being the icing and that its the cake that matters, I was expecting some positive encouragement on building one's character. Cleanliness and excercise are good and all, but don't get it twisted – this is still just grooming highschoolers into housewives.

  3. And if that wasn’t enough motivation for getting your sh*t together

    https://youtu.be/10DQeSk1LaY

    It’s that easy.

  4. Yknow I was expecting to dislike this a lot more, and while there are small things that bugged me this was actually a lot about self care and was really good to be reminded of. Good for this woman for spreading such a message

  5. That woman is on fire with logic and facts. She explained it directly and simply. It’s shame rhetoric like this can’t be taught in the modern day, it’s not politically correct enough.

  6. Yep….beauty sleep. I'm all for it! Great advice on eating too. When I went out on my own, I decided that dessert was first. Big mistake! Eating right is certainly boring, but I'm now doing everything I can to have a clean body and fresh looking shin….decades later…. it's a struggle.

  7. girls in the forties– Stay up all night writing letters, and listening to a record
    girls of 2019– Stay up all night texting on the phone, and listening to spotify

  8. Most of this advice is actually what I started doing at the beginning of 2019 and…. yeah, the difference is huge. Madam is spitting some mad truths here

  9. Wowsers! Washing your hair daily is bad right ? What kind of food is that, if you can't microwave it ? See ? All you Instagram models are doing everything wrong ?

  10. I was expecting some supreme sexism but this was actually really good advice. I'll make sure I'm never up all night writing letters like some kind of hooligan

  11. “Many girls stay up writing letters or listening to music” me: wow what a boring life – like what the heck where’s the webtoons and Netflix

  12. It’s honestly really smart to remind people that being healthy is attractive. All of these tips can apply to men. Tell teens they’ll be more attractive if they’re healthy. That’s what most teens care about most!

  13. Video: eat healthy for once my god
    Taco Bell ad: BUY MY PREMIUM CHEDDAR STEAK CHALUPA FOR ONLY FIVE DOLLARS ORDER NOW TO GET IT DELIVERED

  14. Shit. I eat poorly, don’t exercise much, never go outside, don’t sleep enough OR I sleep too much, and I have no social life. I hate myself

  15. 1:01 1940's: "Basically of course, g͟o͟o͟d͟ ͟h͟e͟a͟l͟t͟h͟ and i͟n͟t͟e͟l͟l͟i͟g͟e͟n͟t͟ ͟p͟h͟y͟s͟i͟c͟a͟l͟ ͟c͟a͟r͟e͟…"
    Also 1940's: Liver squishing corsets

  16. Thought this was going to be awful and sexist, turns out it's the wholesome self care advice I was desperately needing 🤷

  17. God damn it, I knew listening to swing music in bed instead of sleeping had made me ugly!!! Sound advice though…

  18. I was so glad to see that the comments are sensible for this wonderful video, I was expecting to see some overly sensitive extreme feminists whining about not wanting to eat healthily or exercise 🥴

  19. How to be pretty 1940: take care of your health
    How to be pretty 2019: Put tons of make up in your face, use tons of hairstyle products, and don't forget to contour your nose!

  20. This was shockingly positive! I was definitely expecting sexist BS. But there are a lot of body positivity points in here!!! "I want to shake you girls for worrying so much about being pretty" 😆 Yas queen.

  21. Maybe some people will start to get it through their head that they’ve been lied to about sexism and misogyny of the world a hundred years ago. The world before the Bolsheviks. It wasn’t as bad as the corporate institution says it is. Most commentors came here with preconceived notions that were destroyed. Who’s woke now?

  22. So this is what it was like to live in a society that encouraged women to be women rather than shaming them for being feminine.

  23. “I’ve seen lots of sparkling eyes and good complexions sacrificed to swing records at bedtime”
    Me: watching a 1940’s beauty video at 3 am

  24. And THIS is EXACTLY why people from the 30's 40's and 50's were HAPPIER than we are now… fml I was born into the wrong time period.

  25. This advice is just a valid today as it was then but today we have to tell our kids not to have their smartphones in bed.

  26. So if you do all of this stuff that this woman is telling you to do you will automatically be pretty… aight then

  27. Her: talking about the base of a cake and stuff.
    Me: yay I might have some cake left in the fridge.
    Me: ok. Where were we
    Her: a good diet not too much sweet stuff
    Me: wait what.

  28. This is great advice, work on the inside and you will bloom on the outside. 60 years ago they had it sussed. Welcome to 2019 where we have to be told to "be nice to each other"..Wheres that time machine!!!

  29. The beginning of the meat and dairy industry butting into people's diets notice vegetables were the last thing added to the meal besides sugar and keeping the fried food out. Not the most balanced diet. But the idea if the food was proper is awesome sleep and good food. Speaking of at 2:08 a.m. I guess I won't be looking my best a.m.

  30. the only reason i get 8-9 hours of sleep is because of my parents, they take everything from me. so i have no choice but the sleep, i will get a flashlight soon so i can read at night though 😂

  31. Looks like we gave up on those values. Now we just say aw fuck it, everyone is beautiful no matter how fat and ugly they are lol

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