"I can bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan"

Children of the '70s and '80s, these flashbacks are dedicated to you: Enjoli perfume and Jean Nate bath splash. Oh, the horror, the horror.

Published October 30, 2008 8:33PM (EDT)

This afternoon, apropos of very little, a colleague of mine showed me an old Riunite wine commercial from 1984. The jingle goes: "Riunite on ice/ Riunite so nice." Gah, I can still sing it word for word. It's burned on my brain from all those evenings sitting, slack-jawed, in front of the boob tube.

Watching the commercial, inevitably, led to a discussion of other 1980s commercials burned on the brain, and it was not long before we began speaking in loud, animated voices about such bizarre lady products of the late '70s/early '80s as Jean Naté bath splash and Love's Baby Soft. The Jean Naté commercial, posted below, is nothing short of a classic. It's such a satire of itself that I couldn't possibly make fun of it. Because, honestly, nothing is as refreshing as splashing strange chemicals on my bare skin!

But the gold standard of female empowerment commercials is -- and perhaps always will be -- the Enjoli commercial below. "I can bring home the bacon/ Fry it up in a pan/ And never, ever let you forget you're a man." Oh, boy. What the hell did this teach me about womanhood? (And shoulder pads!?) 

By Sarah Hepola

Sarah Hepola is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, "Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget."

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