Lucky Tiger Hair Tonic

Lucky Tiger Dandruff Remedy was first marketed around 1917 by the Lucky Tiger Dandruff Company of Kansas City, Mo. In the early 1920s, the company, now Lucky Tiger Remedy Company, was in the hands of Pleasant Stephen Harris, part owner of the successful Harris-Goar Company stores. The Lucky Tiger products were popular in barbershops, and in 1935 Harris trademarked the brand and began to market nationwide.
Advertising in the 1950s emphasized sex appeal, including an offer for free Lucky Tiger Pin-Up Girl posters for the well-groomed man’s "Tiger Lair." Although the products became less popular after hair styles changed in the 1960s, Lucky Tiger brand is still available in 2012, and includes a line of "Barber Shop Classics."
This bottle of Lucky Tiger Hair Tonic was likely produced in the early to mid-1950s. Around 1949 the company began a marketing campaign that touted the "3-purpose Hair Tonic." Purpose one was to "wake up the scalp;" purpose two was to "kill the germs that cause dandruff;" and purpose three was to "groom hair perfectly." While the packaging has changed over the years, Lucky Tiger 3-Purpose Hair Tonic is still available in 2012.
Currently not on view
Object Name
hair tonic
hair care product
date made
ca 1950-1955
Lucky Tiger Manufacturing Company
Physical Description
glass (container material)
cardboard (packaging material)
paper (container material)
plastic (container material)
alcohol 55% (drug active ingredients)
sodium salicylate (drug active ingredients)
ozyquinoline phosphate (drug active ingredients)
overall: 14.5 cm x 6 cm x 4 cm; 5 23/32 in x 2 3/8 in x 1 9/16 in
overall, box: 5 7/8 in x 2 1/4 in x 1 1/2 in; 14.9225 cm x 5.715 cm x 3.81 cm
overall, bottle: 5 1/2 in x 2 1/4 in x 1 1/4 in; 13.97 cm x 5.715 cm x 3.175 cm
place made
United States: Missouri, Kansas City
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Hair Care Products
Health & Medicine
Hair Care Products
Beauty and Health
Beauty and Hygiene Products: Hair Care and Enhancement
Beauty and Hygiene Products: Marketed to Men
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
Hair Care Products
Beauty and Hygiene Products: Hair Care and Enhancement
Beauty and Hygiene Products: Marketed to Men
Beauty and Health
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
The Fournet Drugstore Collection
Additional Media

Visitor Comments

11/2/2015 11:01:18 PM
My mother is 84. She had told me her mother and father had gone to live in Missouri years ago when she was little. When I asked her "why" she said this. The Harris family had a home in Sayner, Wisconsin back then. Her father did handyman carpentry work and her mother did all the laundry and ironing for the family as well. She mentioned the "Lucky Tiger" Hair Tonic the family was known for. The Harris family went back down to Kansas City and asked them all to come with them and continue to work for them. She didn't remember how long they lived there, but she said they had their own farmhouse. They returned to Wisconsin in time because the heat she said was unbearable and my grandfather was a huge fisherman and loved to hunt. I am 58 yrs old and had never heard the "Lucky Tiger" story, It's amazing her memory is still good. I only wish I had more info as far as what the approximate dates were when they were with the family. Thanks for letting me share!
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