20 smells that will take you right back to the 1970s

Time for your daily dose of nose-stalgia.

It's a question that younger generations always ask: What did the 1970s smell like?

Well, kids, we're here to help. Fair warning: scratching and sniffing your screen will not produce the desired effect / odor.

However, if you grew up in the decade, the mere mention of the following items will bring back olfactory memories.

Take a whiff and see if these trigger any feelings for you. Are there any other scents from that decade that linger?

1. Musk


It was a musky decade, overall, whether you wore Jovan, Old Spice or English Leather.

2. Gee, Your Hair Smells Terrific


The greatest shampoo name — if not product name — of all time. The floral scent still lingers, perhaps because it's still sold somewhere, somehow.

3. Lemon Up


Or, those who wanted a bright, citrus scent washed with this brand.

4. Body on Tap


Or, if you wanted that fresh "I hang out at the bar" feeling, there was Body on Tap, the shampoo made with beer.

5. Fondue


Molten cheese, with a strong undercurrent of Sterno can.

6. Leaded gasoline


Gas stations never smelled the same once we all went unleaded.

7. Naugahyde


Whether it was wrapped around your dad's favorite chair or covering the interior of your Chevy Caprice, it had that not-really-leather smell, not to mention sound.

8. Super Elastic Bubble Plastic


This gummy Wham-O toy smelled like science and health hazards. 

9. Creepy Crawlers


Speaking of toys with a distinctive scent, there was this particular plastic odor, to balance out the sweet, light-bulb brownies of the Easy Bake Oven.

10. Hai Karate


The smell of men who take action. Or, well, live in their first bachelor pad.

11. Love's Baby Soft


The counterpart to Hai Karate.

12. Herbel Essence


We're talking the original shampoo formula. Don't go huffing the stuff in drugstores now thinking it'll bring back memories.

13. Rubber cement


We loved how the little brush was attached to the cap.

14. Ditto machines


Ah, that purple ink.

15. Polaroid film canisters


Touching your phone screen just isn't the same.

16. Aramis


Leathery, woody, with a hint of cumin and gardenia… Or so Estée Lauder claimed. It was introduced in 1964 and took off in the Seventies.

17. Charlie


Charlie aimed at the new city woman. It was like Mary Tyler Moore in a bottle.

18. Card catalogs


Musty, papery and redolent of book reports.

19. Vanish crystals


Keep toilets minty for decades.

20. Linoleum


The rubbery smell of kitchen floors.

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historychef 19 months ago
Ahh, the smell of Creepy Crawlers!
Boy, that takes me back to the 60s...
JimB 47 months ago
Ahh, the jokes that were told with "Gee, your hair smells terrific".
TVChel 51 months ago
I used "Loves" lemon scented products!
Led Zeppelin had a song out about "squeezing" their Lemon, until the juice ran down their legs!
JKMallaber 53 months ago
We used to paint our desks with rubber cement, then sniff it. You could roll it off in one piece and pop the bubbles to get a second hit. Wait . . . Did I just post that? :-)
dth1971 53 months ago
How about articles on 1980's and 1990's smells?
RobCertSDSCascap 53 months ago
#5- We always used regular cooking oil.
#8- Super-nauseous-caustic-bubbles!
#19- Takes the prize for worst smell of the decade!
JimmyMuraco 53 months ago
The ORIGINAL scent of Irish Spring bar soap! The one that came in the black box with the neon green letters. That was some incredible aroma!
bpacha77511 JimmyMuraco 53 months ago
oh i loved irish spring.....just doesnt smell the same now!!
Nothing like it!
idkwut2use 53 months ago
I'm familiar with nearly half of them. :-3 The Creepy Crawlers are especially good....
Vermont Country Store sells Lemon Up (which I tried) & "Gee Your Hair Smells Terrific" (yikes what a name!)
WILD 60 months ago
Super Elastic Bubble Plastic - This gummy Wham-O toy smelled like science and health hazards.
Dan 60 months ago
Isn't it funny how a lot of women's products were shaped like a certain part of a male's anatomy?
RobCertSDSCascap Dan 53 months ago
That tickles me!
KevinSnyder 60 months ago
As a kid growing up in the 70`s one of my favorite smells was that bubble gum smell when you opened up a fresh pack of baseball cards.
Yeah, with or without flour.
ChuckJohnson 60 months ago
You can still get rubber cement. I have some in my shop.
jholton30062 68 months ago
#5 - You could also use oil for things like shrimp.

#9 - Remember the Thingmaker? Basically a hot plate.

#11 - That was a creepy ad campaign...

#13 - We used to make rubber cement balls and bounce them around the classroom.

#19 - Nothing got the toilet cleaner...

#20 - Things just haven't been the same since they went to vinyl.... And, of course, the adjunct to linoleum: floor wax, another distinctive smell...
JimmyMuraco jholton30062 53 months ago
The old Future Floor Wax!!
Shadowdancer 69 months ago
Looking back, it;s amazing what we kids were allowed to play with. What about that "nice" smell from the original silly putty?
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