Vintage Mattress Ad Features Hair on Mattress

Throwback Thursday! Check out this newspaper ad from the early 20’s which offers box spring mattresses, especially constructed to include hair contents in them. When we speak of “hair contents”, the manufacturers particularly meant gray curled hair.

It doesn’t exactly say if its human hair, but based on history, it would be easy to conclude that it is.

Back in the day, use of human hair on mattresses was quite a well-known practice. Because resources for materials were scarce (as it was a time of war), some manufacturers turn to other ways to make mattresses as comfortable as possible. Use of hair as mattress content is well documented in museums outside of the United States.

Of course, these days, you don’t find human hair on mattresses, as manufacturers have turned to more expensive, but less controversial materials to use — such as horse hair and other softer fabrics like cashmere.

By the way, this ad is from Frederick & Nelson, which was a well-known furnishing company that had its roots in Oregon. The company ran its own mattress manufacturing plant.  It went out of business in the early 1990’s.

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