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Old 12-18-2012, 07:22 PM
 
Location: University City, Philadelphia
22,583 posts, read 11,763,332 times
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Not everything that comes out of Hollywood should be dismissed.

In the 1940's a movie came out based on a best selling book by Betty Smith called "A Tree Grows In Brooklyn" which is about poor working people who lived in tenements in c.1900 Brooklyn. As money becomes scarcer, the Nolan family is forced to move into an even smaller apartment on the top floor (in those days, apartments were on the higher floors as the tenements had no elevators and there were more flights of stairs to climb.) There is no bathroom in the apartment, but the strict mother who is trying very hard to raise her children properly despite their poverty, insists the kids take their twice a week baths in the kitchen sink.

I really enjoyed my visit to New York City's Tenement Museum in the Lower East Side; the apartments in the mid-19th Century did not have running water. There was a water pump outside the building in the court yard - right next to the outhouses! Very unsanitary! The out houses would often overflow. If you wanted water you went outside with two pails, and carry the water back to your apartment (remember, the more stairs you had to climb the cheaper the rent).
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Old 12-18-2012, 07:35 PM
 
Location: University City, Philadelphia
22,583 posts, read 11,763,332 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post

Though your post didn't cover it I wonder if girls in those days trimmed and shaved hair like they do today? Did they have unibrows? Hairy legs? Hairy armpits? Hairy...bushes?
Most American women did not start depilatory practices until the 1920s and '30s (I think it became fashionable because of the movies, Hollywood set the trends in fashion and grooming); in Europe it did not catch on until the '60's or '70's I think. So to answer your question: yes, women were hairier back then. Mind you, in some cultures, such as the Turkish Ottoman Empire, ladies shaved all their body hair off for centuries.

Some guys are turned on by women who are not shaved or trimmed, and there is plenty of porn available to guys who fancy shaggy girls.
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Old 12-18-2012, 07:56 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
26,837 posts, read 57,830,396 times
Reputation: 29220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clark Park View Post
Not everything that comes out of Hollywood should be dismissed.

In the 1940's a movie came out based on a best selling book by Betty Smith called "A Tree Grows In Brooklyn" which is about poor working people who lived in tenements in c.1900 Brooklyn. As money becomes scarcer, the Nolan family is forced to move into an even smaller apartment on the top floor ...
Open up your copy of "Grapes of Wrath" or push in the DVD and look for the section on when the Joad family arrived at the Government camp to see how the kids responded to seeing toilets and running water for the first time (mid 1930's)

And then there is the original Lysol advertising...
Attached Thumbnails
The History Of Personal Hygiene in America-20060913_lysol_feminine_hygiene-1.jpg  
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:08 PM
 
Location: Pa
42,565 posts, read 42,398,375 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post
I've considered many times getting baby wipes to wipe my butt with, get rid of the poo and clean it up as well. Wiping it with toilet paper will smear or scrape most of it off, but an amount of fecal matter retains to the surface. It's like drying your face with a napkin after you spilled chocolate ice cream on yourself, it's just dried up and caked to your face, not streaking down your skin anymore.

There needs to be an advance in wiping after using the toilet!
They have them. Toddlers use them as they are getting potty trained. They also have feminine wipes.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:22 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
26,837 posts, read 57,830,396 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post
I've considered many times getting baby wipes to wipe my butt with...
There needs to be an advance in wiping after using the toilet!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raena77 View Post
They have them. Toddlers use them as they are getting potty trained.
I've seen this phenomenon.
I get the sense that a lot of people don't have enough roughage in their diet.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:22 PM
Status: "happy again, no longer catless! t...." (set 4 days ago)
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,421 posts, read 16,677,475 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
I think we've gone the other extreme...it's not really necessary to bathe/shower daily, we're afraid of ANY body odour that we have to mask it.

^ What does toilet paper have to do with ID? We don't NEED it, it's just we're averse to the idea of being dirty down there. Animals just let the fecal residue remain, I guess it attracts insects and stuff though lol.
I agree that we've overdone the clean. Our houses must be sanitary and sparkling, no matter what fumes fill the air. Some people take several showers a day to stay clean. While its good not to fill the streets with horse leavings and what was dumped out of the window, I wonder if you took your average clean person today and put them back then, how long they'd last. We worry about germs, but exposure to them is what builds an immune system. I wonder how many would withstand the assault of pathogans that adults who survived childhood back then were not threatened by. One telling thing is that if you average lifespan it sounds like people died young. But its not like that. The younger, the more likely to die. If you lived a year, some cultures gave you a name. Even in medieval Europe, if you made it to five, you had a good chance of growing up. And if you made it to aduthood, you stood a good chance of living a modern level of years. People in their 80's and 90's were not unknown, and in the fifties were not uncommon. The difference is they could handle the exposure and grew a strong immune system, where those who couldn't, died early.

I wouldn't advocate going back then, but I think we need not fear germs like we do. We will always have to deal with them, and our best defense is to allow our bodies to learn how to fight them properly. This doesn't mean abandoning sensable rules. Washing your hands before you eat, avoiding known contamination, and the like are sensible. Going into a panic if your kids come home covered in dirt since they were playing in it is. We may be harming ourselves *more* by cleaning our enclosed spaces with vapor riddled stuff so it always shines. Some homes have more pollution indoors than out.

Moderation in anything is a good thing.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:36 PM
 
Location: Location: Location
6,219 posts, read 7,395,658 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post
I've considered many times getting baby wipes to wipe my butt with, get rid of the poo and clean it up as well. Wiping it with toilet paper will smear or scrape most of it off, but an amount of fecal matter retains to the surface. It's like drying your face with a napkin after you spilled chocolate ice cream on yourself, it's just dried up and caked to your face, not streaking down your skin anymore.

There needs to be an advance in wiping after using the toilet!
Surprise!
If you take a stroll down the toilet paper aisle in your neighborhood grocery store or the Fill-in-the-Name Mart, you'll find that there are such things. Cottonelle makes wet wipes, flushable, and they have a refillable dispenser box. Scott makes a comparable item and the mega-Marts have their own brands. Just be sure that what you buy says "flushable" on the label, as not all of them are.

As far as "hirsute" women, the clothing that most wore, long sleeves, long skirts, petticoats galore, with every square inch of skin covered, made hair removal unnecessary. When women became so bold as to wear short skirts and dresses without - gasp! - sleeves, the practice of shaving began.

I spent some of my teen years in a house with no indoor plumbing. A bath was heating water on the stove and pouring it into a tub. A time-consuming project. This was very strange to me because I had previously lived in the city with my grandparents and we had all the normal necessaries.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:37 PM
 
Location: A Yankee in northeast TN
9,483 posts, read 13,334,142 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post
I've considered many times getting baby wipes to wipe my butt with, get rid of the poo and clean it up as well. Wiping it with toilet paper will smear or scrape most of it off, but an amount of fecal matter retains to the surface. It's like drying your face with a napkin after you spilled chocolate ice cream on yourself, it's just dried up and caked to your face, not streaking down your skin anymore.

There needs to be an advance in wiping after using the toilet!
Been a while since you've shopped the toilet paper aisle?
https://www.cottonelle.com/cottonell...are-wipes.aspx
And as far as women with hairy armpits, etc. that was perfectly normal. I'm pretty sure if a man from that era saw a shaved woman from today he would think she was some sort of freak or suffering some terrible disease causing hair loss, lol.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:42 PM
Status: "happy again, no longer catless! t...." (set 4 days ago)
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,421 posts, read 16,677,475 times
Reputation: 16420
Quote:
Originally Posted by kanhawk View Post
So basically personal hygiene used to be what it is like in France today. j/k
I do wonder if people were so used to the smell that maybe it didn't bother them that much as it might someone today. After all, people were getting together and making babies so it couldn't have been too bad.
I recall reading in a book about 18th century France that Paris could be smelled for many miles, before you saw any sign it was there. Industrial strength perfume was used to sweeten the smell by everyone who could afford it. The custom of the time if you were gentry was once a year you had a new undergarmet made and sewed on. You slept, worked and whatever else in it. Then you had a dress or suit made. It probably required servants to dress you, but you probably didn't have a closet full. You probably wore it daily. When you got a new one, you got rid of it since the material was weakening and for a short while were relatively clean. Some things were washed, but outer dresses with ornate fabrics were usually not.

If you were a peaant, you were just lucky to have what you had and didn't waste water by bathing either.

But if you visited an official residence, your sheets were clean the first time. When you left they stored them under you name so the next visit you got 'your' sheets.

Interesting that even with all this non-bathing and non-cleaining, aside from heavily deadly disease, and infections and childbirth and accidents, most people who lived to be adults lived almost current lifespans.

As for smells, we are blessed in that we get used to things. We'd be overwhelmed at first, but if we stayed long enough, we wouldn't really notice anymore. And if you had always lived there and didn't know anything else, it would just be 'normal'. Normal is defined as what any one place and time calls normal.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:43 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 43,116,816 times
Reputation: 11862
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post
It makes me think if I were ever able to go back in time to these days that finding a girl to date would be a million times harder than what it is today.

Though your post didn't cover it I wonder if girls in those days trimmed and shaved hair like they do today? Did they have unibrows? Hairy legs? Hairy armpits? Hairy...bushes?

Lastly, I wonder what gains we have made by becoming such a clean people. I'm guessing disease and sickness are more rare nowadays than what they were under those hygiene habits.
Why, you wouldn't know any differently. Natural body hair was not considered gross back then, since, to answer your questions, very few women shaved any body hair in Western society.
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