When Oprah was a little girl growing up in Mississippi, she says she really wanted a Chatty Cathy doll, but her family couldn't afford to pay $16 in 1962. Now, Cathy's finally going home with Oprah! "They told me that I can have her after this show," she says.
Mattel's iconic toy, which first appeared in stores in the early '60s, speaks 11 phrases when her "chatty ring" is pulled.
The second doll to make Oprah's retro favorite things list was the best-selling doll of the '60s—Barbie! As a sign of the times, this $2 toy sported a bouffant, bubble-cut hairstyle and tailored suits, which mirrored first lady Jackie Kennedy.
What walks down stairs, alone or in pairs, and makes a slinkity sound? It's Slinky! This childhood favorite hit stores in the 1940s, but its advertising jingle—written in 1962—helped make this metallic toy a part of the American lexicon.
"Nothing says '60s like a Slinky," Oprah says.
A man of many personalities, Mr. Potato Head has withstood the test of time. In the '50s, children attached his hats, glasses and mustaches to real potatoes. Then, in the 1960s, Hasbro added a plastic spud to the package. A few years later, this mister also gained a missus and a two little taters—Brother Spud and Sister Yam.
Another one of Oprah's favorite '60s pastimes was playing with an Etch-a-Sketch, which hit toy store shelves in 1960. For decades, children have expressed their creativity by twisting and turning two knobs. The best part? No messy cleanup!
The Adam's apple, wishbone, bread basket...anyone who's ever been buzzed by Milton Bradley's board game Operation can picture these elusive plastic pieces. Since it first came out in 1965, Operation has been testing the hand-eye coordination of kids and adults alike.
Oprah says her list of favorite beauty products from the '60s would have to start with one super-keen invention—the GE Hairsetter. For just $20, women could get nylon rollers in three different sizes!
An electric toothbrush might not seem high-tech compared to wireless Internet and iPhones, but back in the day, the Trip-Mate Cordless Automatic Toothbrush from GE was revolutionary!
For just $17.88, GE promised cleaner teeth for men and women on the go.
The final item on Oprah's retro favorite things list is something that millions of women can't live without. In the '60s, Maybelline introduced the very first tube of mascara, which sold for just $1.
"It was revolutionary," Oprah says. "Now, we just sort of take all of this for granted."
Published on September 21, 2009