1970s Advertising: The Couples Edition

There's something to be said about being single on one of the coldest Valentine's Days in history. While the couples will be freezing their private parts off as they trudge off to dinner reservations in the coldest air mass to hit the U.S. this season, I'll be staying warm and cozy with my cats while watching Downton Abbey. Yes, I know that makes you matched people painfully jealous.

Joking aside, in honor of the day when a Christian priest has his head cut off by the Romans for secretly marrying couples (because nothing says candy, cards, and flowers like a good beheading) here are some great vintage ads from the '70s I came across not long ago that all feature couples. Love is in the air, everywhere you look around...

Nothing says machismo like a good '70s stache and going shirtless. I know they're on the beach, but don't you get the feeling he walks around looking like that all of the time?

For a lot of married couples, this is probably their idea of the perfect way to spend Valentine's Day.

These two may want to follow the lead of the couple before them. As an aside, the woman looks like Agnetha Faltskog of ABBA.

I sense a porn photography career about to be born.

These two have clearly already gotten that career well underway.

She's dressed like an Austrian. There's a monkey mask on the table. I don't want to know what they've been up to!

"Very long. Very thin." Very interesting, especially as I've never heard of Dino cigarettes. It looks like he's smoking a pencil.

Now we're about to get into some more alcohol ads, because there was a LOT of drinking taking place in the 1970s. I like the little life saver he has especially for his drink.

I know before I head out for a bike ride, I hydrate and fuel up with a copperhead.

Then there's rehydrating yourself after skiing with whiskey.

OK, this ad happens to actually be from the '80s...because bathing in champagne WAS a very '80s thing to do.

I suppose it doesn't matter that he's clearly ill-prepared for deep-sea fishing, with his attire and equipment only suitable for rivers and streams. Looks like he caught himself a lively one nonetheless.

Blame Canada, as the South Park song says...ladies love a man in uniform, eh?

So many of these '70s male models seem cut from the same mold, huh?

"I'll call you late, every night, just to tell you I love you" is code for "Thanks for the one-night stand; have a nice life." (OK, she's clearly leaving on a trip due to the presence of luggage...but I still thought it was funny.)

I looked up this Randall Lawrence character that this ad speaks of, and apparently he was a male model at the time, although there was very limited info and these are the only photos of him smoking a pipe which makes the mystery all the more stranger. And who's the intimidating looking dude behind him...a bodyguard?

I didn't realize that the Bing Crosby look turned some women on.

Well that's one way to make a Winnebago sexy! Note the "love" pillow behind her.

There's plenty more where these ads come from, but I'll have to post more another time. In the meantime, I hope all Go Retro readers have a happy, safe, and warm Valentine's Day weekend!


  1. Interesting looking at all the booze ads. With pot becoming legal in several states, I wonder if we will get similar ads for marijuana in the near future...

    1. I could see that happening. Not sure if there are restrictions on advertising that type of drug...

  2. I especially like the guy in the Jantzen ad; red checkered pants? Check. White belt? Check. His woman's eyes on the prize? Check!

    Happy Valentines Day, Pam!

    1. Thanks, Doug - Happy Valentine's Day to you, too!

  3. When men were men and they smoked Camels and drank cheap Scotch and damn it!! they didn't complain about nothing!! They just stoically stood there and let their woman drape themselves over his awesomeness!! Gawd those were the days my friends!!

  4. Hmm, I notice that NONE of these ads has a person who isn't a white, upper middle class WASP. How advertising has changed since the 70s! I also thought it interesting that the Koss Stereophones ad shows a couple with the man tuning out on his earphones while the woman watches a portable tv. Was this an adumbration of the present Internet and cell phone age?


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