Dad and I were English Leather guys. I think there is still a bottle of English Leather powder on a shelf in the basement shower room. It was traumatic when Wife Lila came home from shopping one day to break the news that English Leather spray deodorant was nowhere to be found. She bought the last couple of cans in the world.
This can has been sitting on the bedroom dresser for at least a decade. [Editor’s note: Wife Lila, while proofing this, said “two decades.”]
I reluctantly switched to another brand that I don’t like half as much as English Leather, and I set this one aside for who knows why.
After much nagging to “get rid of that stuff before it explodes,” I gave myself a couple squirts last week. It’s as good as it always was.
Citrus, woods, moss and leather
An ad for the cologne (which I never wore) describes the scent: “Bring out your deep, masculine side with English Leather by Dana. This unforgettable cologne for men mixes citrus, woods, moss and leather scents for a rich and masculine blend that can last the entire day. Introduced in 1949, this casual scent brings a classic elegance to your everyday interactions. Apply it before you leave the house for an informal outing and enjoy the sense of rich manliness it brings to all of your personal encounters during the day.”
I’m not sure I’d describe it exactly that way; to me there’s a hint of a smell of talcum powder attached to it.
English Leather still exists
Some non-spray products are available on Amazon (if you click on the link to order, I get a small piece of the action and it doesn’t cost you extra).
- If you can accept stick English Leather (I can’t), a 3-oz 3-pack goes for about $17.
- 8-oz bottle of English Leather cologne, about $15.
- English Leather Soap on a Rope, $8. I remember buying this for Dad for some holiday. It hung in the shower on a brownish-red knotted cord. I’m pretty sure it was a one-time experiment.
- English Leather After Shave Splash, $13.
Remember Old Spice?
Speaking of after shaves, do you remember Old Spice? It came in a white glass bottle with a plastic stopper that would pull out so you could splash a little on your palm and then rub it on your face after shaving. It had enough alcohol in it that you would know immediately if you has scraped anywhere. I would almost swear the stopper and print were blue.
Alas, Old Spice is still available, but it’s not the Old Spice that we knew and loved, according to Amazon reviewers who rate it a 4-1/2 out of 5 stars.
Here’s a typical 2-star reviewer: “Old Spice was originally produced by Shulton, a New Jersey company. The Old Spice brand was purchased by Proctor and Gamble in 1990. P&G reformulated Old Spice to work with the plastic bottles a few years later. If you have memories of the Shulton Old Spice scent, you will find the new stuff to be evocative, but decidedly brighter, more floral and powdery. The original Shulton was deeper and spicier. The new P&G Old Spice “classic” after shave and cologne are not terrible products, but they are not ‘the same as they always were.‘”
I rarely used Old Spice, but my Grandfather Welch did. I thought of him every time I smelled it.
Maybe that’s why the product description reads, “Old Spice Cologne has been around for generations. If your grandfather hadn’t worn it, you wouldn’t exist. Neither would velvet paintings, the chili dog and sheepskin rugs — manly things that were made by men who smelled strong and splashed Old Spice cologne on their faces before doing other manly stuff during their day.“
18 Replies to “English Leather”
Let us not forget “Hai Karate”, always a favorite of the 12 to 16 year old demographic of the day. Orignal Old Spice was worn once you reached “driving age” and were around the opposite sex with a little more frequency.
You all are forgetting “Jade East and Brute.” Too. Poplular up to Bout 16 and a real date.
There was this HOT English chick who whispered; “All my Men wear English Leather, or nothing at all” That was the ad I remember. As a teenage lad I thought about that ad ALL the time and wore English Leather, and Brute at times too and probably Jade, but never Hai Karate… and never all at the same time.
Husband Don wore English Leather in high school and then moved on to Canoe and British Sterling. I think I wore Wind Song in those days.
BRUNE TIME RANT
All of those scents were TOO STRONG for my sensitive olfactory equipment. English Leather & Old Spice actually smelled pretty good if used in moderation… ie: a couple of dabs behind your ears and may be one in your belly button. Jade East, Brut, Canoe, Hai Karate, & etc… were/are like Over-Smell on steroids!!
But nobody ever wore them in moderation. Even the aftershaves were very strong, and guys would slop that all over their faces and then add the cologne & the deodorant. OMG!!! You could recognize some guys (and gals) by the overwhelming oppressive stench when they entered a full gymnasium.
Of course 30 seconds after these folks splashed & sprayed all that SMELL on…. their poor overwhelmed olfactory sensors blocked out the smell for them – but the full NUCLEAR EFFECT was saved for the rest of the weary unsuspecting world.
Like my sainted grandmother used to say “a lady’s or gentleman’s personal fragrance should be noticed ONLY when you enter their ‘personal space’, dance with them, or give them a hug” – NOT when ELVIS ENTERS THE BUILDING!!
If I seem a “tad” over-board on my personal scent opinions, it may be because I only realized years later – after having to frequently change movie seats because my eyes were burning and my nose completely stopped up – that along with some seasonal hay fever… I had become allergic to some of the main ingredients in perfumes and colognes from over exposure.
That’s how many allergies work kids – you’re not usually allergic till later in life until all your scent or touch receptors get filled up. For example… to my great surprise after I got out of the Navy in 1972 I found out the hard way when buying my first Civilian Suite – that 6 years of US Navy Dress Blues – that I had become allergic to Mother WOOL. I loved mother wool! but she can never touch my skin again…
So….. any way….. I got all that goin for me.
We were to buy a Christmas present for our store Christmas party of not over $5.00. I bought some men’s cologne at the drug store in the shopping center. somehow I ended up with my own present. Guess it was for the best as that was the stinking stuff I had ever smelled and I threw it away.
Ken, the print on the bottles of Old Spice was blue with a tinge of gray. The little spike-shaped stopper was gray.
Jade East, used in moderation was one of my favorites, while I discovered that Charlie, a women’s perfume, drove me nuts (in a good way).
Brune NEVER realized that all the Deodorant and heavy dashes of Old English, Jade East and Brute on his “friends”, were to try to hide the smell given off from the wool allergic reaction he was giving everyone else…mystery solved.
Oh yea Magnum PU Hopkinns??? That didn’t even make sense.
I told you I didn’t become wool allergic until AFTER fighting in the “Big One” on the Caribean & Mediteranean Fronts during the Vietnam Police Action. The VA Shrinks think I got my PTSD & Mother Wool allergy leading dangerous, and sweaty, reconnaissance patrols through the treacherous red light districts in war-torn hell holes like Montego Bay, St. Thomas, & Bermuda….. While draft dodgers like you and Steinhoff were back here dating our girlfriends and “Huffing your English Leather Deodorant Aerosols!!
I have flash-backs still!! — over 40 years later. Damn You Magnum PU!!
Let’s not forget “English Leather, so fine a gift it’s even sold in jewelry stores.”
Jade East–sold proudly at the Buckner-Ragsdale Company.
Was Jade East a cologne or a shampoo?
Jade East was certainly a cologne–though not one I would have ever worn–but I think the company made a range of products as well.
Was I the only teen boy to discover the overwhelming amatory effect of Aqua Velva on teen girls?
I sure wish you had passed on the secret of Magic Musk when I needed it.
Yes G. Paul,
I too used a little Aqua Velva growing up, as did my Dad and Grandpa. That and old Spice both in ‘after shave’ form, but I just dabbed it on for an “in-close only, manly fragrance”. Nice, mild, clean scent – still have half a bottle of the A.V. in my medicine cabinet that I dab on when Momma is feeling frisky. (AKA: on my birthday,Valentine’s day, & New Years Eve (if I’m lucky & can stay awake)
But no, I didn’t notice any “overwhelming amatory effect of (Ice Blue) Aqua Velva on teen girls”, or the young ladies, the middle aged women, or even now on the Social Security sisters. It must have been because you, G Paul, were such a “Stallion”.