How Fantastik's Packaging Has Changed From 1967 To Today

Flickr user RhymePile submitted to the Consumerist Flickr pool this fantastic photo of bottles of Fantastik brand all-purpose cleaner from 1967 and today, side-by-side.

“I saved this 1967 bottle of Fantastik brand spray cleaner from my grandmother’s closet after she passed away a few years ago. It still has cleaner in it,” he wrote in the notes.

Texize, the original maker of Fantastik, was purchased by Dow Chemical in 1986, which in turn sold its cleaning product brands to S.C. Johnson in 1997.

5091627168_f1d9116b9c_z.jpg

Interestingly, it seems Fantastik has been immune to the Grocery Shrink Ray–the 1967 bottle contains 28 fluid ounces of cleaner, and today’s Fantastik with Bleach bottle contains 32.

While the directions are nearly identical, there are far more warnings on today’s bottle. The modern bottle, on the other hand, doesn’t declare that it can clean smoke film and whitewall tires.

5091647910_6df47ab81a_z.jpg

5091652230_301592fdda.jpg

newbottle.jpg

1967 Fantastik cleaner [Flickr]

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. jiarby says:

    photo says 12 fl. oz, not 28.

  2. McRib wants to know if you've been saved by the Holy Clown says:

    So it looks like they’ve made the grip top worse?
    Older one looks more comfortable to use.

    • mornon says:

      Something tells me the marketing group considered that women were the primary user, and thus recommended redesigning the bottle for a smaller hand size.

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      really? it looks less comfortable to me, especially around the part that fits over your hand where the web of your thumb would fit. on the older bottle it’s all corners and edges and the new one has a rounded grip

  3. samabi says:

    1 pt =16 oz +12 = 28

  4. myCatCracksMeUp says:

    The OP’s grandmother must’ve not been very impressed with the cleaning abilities of the product if she never finished using it, and left it sitting in a cabinet all these years.

    • DanRydell says:

      Maybe she refilled it from a giant vat of Fantastik in her basement.

      Or maybe she just re-used the spray bottle for other things.

      Maybe she made her Fantastik at home.

  5. samabi says:

    1 pt = 16 oz + 12 = 28

  6. damageinc says:

    Cool story, bro

  7. evnmorlo says:

    1pt 12oz=0.00347222222 hogshead= 28 oz

  8. CBenji says:

    Funny how the grandmother saved it. Just once I wonder if a company that has been around for a long time were to package it’s product like it used to whether people would like it. It would be nostalgic that is for sure. I know I would probably buy it.

    • fatediesel says:

      It may not be that the grandmother saved it, she might just not have thrown it away because there was still cleaner in it. When my great aunt died I was cleaning her house and there was quite a few 60s-era cleaning products in her cabinets that still had cleaner in it.

    • jayelle says:

      Like, for instance…Coke in glass bottles?

    • Julia789 says:

      I found 2 cases of “Short and Sassy” shampoo from the 70′s in my grandmother’s house after she died.

      She was so upset when the Clairol discontinued the shampoo, she purchased several cases of it. Being from a generation that washed their hair only weekly, those cases lasted her decades.

    • Conformist138 says:

      Right now, I noticed some cereal boxes that are kinda retro looking. My Cap’n Crunch had some pretty old-timey graphics and I saw online later that the entire line had some new throwback-inspired packaging. Kinda fun in a way, I guess. I was still only indulging because it was on sale.

  9. Griking says:

    Don’t manufacturers just water these types of products down rather than reduce the amount of product in the container?

    • DanRydell says:

      I don’t know, do they? It seems that watering them down would make them less effective and people would switch to a better product.

      • gman863 says:

        +1

        A good example is the Tide commercial that compares the amount of actual cleaning ingredients in to to “the leading value brand” (Sun). If you are a CR subscriber and check out the ratings of laundry detergents, it validates this: Original Tide is near the top; Sun is at the bottom.

        P&G’s strategy is the shrink ray. Recently, I’ve noticed both Wal-Mart and Kroger are stocking 75 ounce bottles of Tide; the cost per ounce unit price is way above the traditional 100 ounce packages. Me thinks the better value of the 100 ounce bottle is not long for this world.

  10. mandarax says:

    I like that the old one says it works “instantly” and “cleans on contact” while the new one says to allow it to penetrate dirt.

    • MrEvil says:

      Its possible the 1967 Fantastik is using stuff that is either now banned or has been forced to be watered down because it was too dangerous.

  11. The cake is a lie! says:

    How many people are going to have to post the math? It has been explained already. We get it.

  12. SybilDisobedience says:

    I just realized I’ve been using the same bottle of store-brand window cleaner for over 15 years. How do I know? Because it’s Meijer’s store brand, and I haven’t lived in Michigan since 1994.

    • The cake is a lie! says:

      Two concerns…. This isn’t relevant to the topic. And you must have the dirtiest windows in whatever state you live in. lol

      • Marshmelly says:

        The topic is concerning an old bottle of a cleaning product. She’s talking about an old bottle of cleaning product. How is it not relevant? (regardless of the fact that there are a ton of comments posted here daily that aren’t 100% relevant to the topic). Have nothing better to do than nitpick on someone’s story?

      • SybilDisobedience says:

        Uh…I was commenting that I also have an extremely old bottle of cleaning fluid. You are right about my disgusting windows though. You’re welcome to come clean them.

      • bluejena says:

        Troll.

  13. 99 1/2 Days says:

    Heh, I figured it must have come outta grandma’s cabinet…

  14. Hoss says:
  15. myktag says:

    A rare example of the grocery growth ray, previously thought to be extinct.

    • dorianh49 says:

      Except that I’m the sure the price has increased since the 60′s, so this product would be exempt from any rays except for the very common price increase ray.

    • Fafaflunkie Plays His World's Smallest Violin For You says:

      The question however: How much did that 28oz bottle of Fantastik cost granny in 1967? Nowhere on this fancy reference manual from 2010 called the internet tells me. I can find out the 32oz bottle from 2010 goes for around $4. Strangely enough it’s even cheaper up here: Crappy Tire sells an (albeit smaller) bottle for CAD$3.19. Which translates to the equivalent of $3.46 in US dollars (factoring both the fact 850mL is smaller than 946mL and today’s CAD$1 to USD, which according to Google is $0.97352) Okay, I’ll stop being a total Frink…right…about…now.

  16. zandar says:

    devolution, if you ask me.

  17. mbz32190 says:

    I found things even older in my grandmother’s cabinet when she downsized to a condo. I’m talking about floor cleaners from the 50′s, vats of unknown chemicals, bug sprays that would likely bring down a bald eagle, etc.

    • econobiker says:

      I pulled some true trichloroethylene cleaning fluid out of my grandmother’s effects. Still in its original glass bottle as sold at the store. I snatched that up and put the complete bottle inside a sealed plastic bottle to save it for an “emergency.”

      And even don’t ask about the vial of mercury I found in another dead relatives items…

    • hotcocoa says:

      Thank you for amusing me with the mental image of someone taking down our beloved national bird with an old spray can of funky chemicals.

  18. RxDude says:

    “there are far more warnings on today’s bottle”

    It seems primitive humans 4 decades ago didn’t need warning labels to tell them that spray cleaner is not a beverage, lotion, or eye drop.

    • Iron Weasel says:

      Forty years ago, we weren’t running around slapping everyone with lawsuits every time something happened. I guarantee you that in the late 60′s, people spilled coffee on themselves and they did the logical thing – cleaned it up and changed clothes. They didn’t sue the person / or company that gave them the coffee.

      The warning labels are there to protect the company from stupid people. If you haven’t seen it, check out the movie “Idiocracy” – that’s how this country will be in another 40 years.

      • morehalcyondays says:

        “Welcome to Costco…I love you.” I love that movie.

      • Clyde Barrow says:

        lol,,so true. When I got hurt as a boy, my mom was compassionate, but she also told me to “use the brains God gave me to not do it again”. Oh, and “don’t whine, cuz no one likes a whiner”.

  19. econobiker says:

    Saw the same item with some cans of Drano we found in the basement of a relative’s home. The oldest lacked bar code ,was owned by a different company than today,and had the classic poison skull, the next newest (still probably 15-25 years old) had more warnings but they were in English, and the most modern recent was bilingual and had huge amounts of warnings.

    • econobiker says:

      Also when we cleaned my grandmothers house out after her death we found a plastic Tide powder measuring cup that had advertising to the effect : “The New Tide Powder: Safe for both automatic and wringer washing machines!”

  20. jimstoic says:

    “Copyright 1967″ doesn’t mean the bottle was from 1967; it just means the text on the bottle was copyrighted that year. If the text didn’t change frequently, the bottle could have been from much later.

    I remember cleaning fluids coming in glass bottles when I was a kid in the 1960s.

  21. radio1 says:

    This stuff reminds me of my childhood. I was always making messes when I was kid and we had Fantastik. So, I used it… a lot.

    That spray trigger is not original, at least from what I can remember– the trigger and screw cap were green like the label.

  22. PortlandBeavers says:

    It looks like the screw-on nozzle of the old bottle is not original. I remember when I was a kid 25 or 30 years ago, spray bottles didn’t have those square tips on them. My guess is that grandma reused the bottle, and that the cleaner in it probably isn’t original.

  23. seaanemoneman says:

    I like how much grodier the spray top of the new bottle is.

  24. Thorzdad says:

    That is definitely not an original Fantastik bottle. Fantastik originally came in an old-fashioned pump bottle, WITHOUT the pistol-grip molding…the kind that had the pump on the top of the bottle, like the old-school Windex bottles. And I’m pretty sure the original bottles were clear.