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Nik-L-Nip And Other Weird Waxy Candies That Are Sure To Bring Back Memories

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Ah… wax candy,  as a kid I never really understood the appeal. Frankly, I was a bit afraid of the syrupy contents of some of these nostalgic candies. My friends, on the other hand, all seemed to enjoy them, and as I’ve found over the years, they were not alone.

Retro candies like the wax lips and Nik-L-Nips are still around today, and still, evoke powerful nostalgic memories for those that had them as kids.

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nik l nips wax candy | collectingcandy.com

In lieu of Halloween sneaking up on us, We are sharing a series of trade ads and clippings from the early 70’s era. I don’t have much in the way of packaging for any of these wax treats. For the most part, the packaging was an afterthought (with the exception of Nik-L-Lips) where this category of confection was concerned, and it rarely stood out by itself.

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It was the syrup-filled contents that were the stars of the show and the funny looking lips and buck teeth that gave us one new, outlandish look! That was certainly the case in the early 1970s. Hankering for a taste of Nik L Nips, we found them for sale on Amazon – click here.

Retro Wax Candy Nik L Nip

By my estimate, this era was a time of intense competition between two of the biggest wax novelty candy manufacturers; Glenn Confections and W&F Manufacturing.  Their ads in the candy trades during this time were full-color and plentiful. Which is good for us today, as I get to use those ads to show you a nice cross-section of what was available during my youth.

Before I get to those, I’d like to mention Nik-L-Nips, certainly one of the stars of the wax novelty world.  Originally produced by W&F, they’re still around and are now a product of the Tootsie company.  Tootsie has acquired several of these nostalgic candy brands over the years and has used their confectionery power to allow them to live on, where in some cases they might have disappeared.  That’s pretty cool, in my book.

The world of wax candy looked like circa 1970

I’m going to start with something you just wouldn’t find today – a wax six-shooter. Oh, wax six-shooters and bunnies – they really do go together.

I don’t think I need to point out the issue some folks would have with the wax six-shooter seen here.  Simpler times.

W&F Wax Novelties – Syrup Six Shooter – candy trade clipping – February 1969 (CollectingCandy.com)
W&F Manufacturing – Six Shooter ‘centsational’ seller – candy trade ad – March 1970 (CollectingCandy.com)
W&F Manufacturing – Nik-L-Nip and more – candy trade ad – March 1969 (CollectingCandy.com)

 

W&F Manufacturing – centsational sellers – candy trade ad – February 1970 (CollectingCandy.com)

Next up is another W&F trade ad

This time focusing on their Halloween offerings.  In my opinion, Halloween is when these wax treats really shined.

This particular trade ad has some pretty awesome items pictured. Anyone remember this wax-filled monster?:

W&F Manufacturing – Halloween sensational selling items – candy trade ad – May 1970 (CollectingCandy.com)

Next up are the trade ads I’ve collected from the other big name in wax confections – Glenn.

I first became aware of Glenn Confections due to their wax whistle, as one was in a scrapbook of gum wrappers that my pal Dan Goodsell had found years ago:

Glenn Confections Wowee Whistle packaging – and whistle. (CollectingCandy.com)

I’ll get back to Wowee, but for now, here’s more of the whole Glenn lineup from the period:

Glenn Confections – Summer Money Makers – candy trade ad – March 1969 (CollectingCandy.com)

As you can see, Glenn was producing similar items to what W&F was.  I suppose you can’t trademark filing a wax six shooter with flavored syrup.

And once again, a wondrous mix of waxy forms; daggers and frogs.

Glenn Confections – 7 Fast Selling Items – candy trade ad – January 1970 (CollectingCandy.com)

This next ad has some really cool pieces that aren’t included in the other ads:  A syrup-filled space shooter, a syrup-filled caterpillar (pretty gross for 1971), syrup-filled tools, and Chew-A-Toon, the same wax gum whistle that would be called Wowee for Halloween.

Not at all on the level of Nik L Nips, but fun all the same.

Glenn Confections – makes the change – candy trade ad – January 1971 (CollectingCandy.com)

Yet another wonderfully great piece of ’70s advertising history featuring Glenn’s Halloween offerings.

I’ll bet a lot of you will remember these, or ones similar to these:

Glenn Confections – Fast Selling Items for Halloween – candy trade ad – April 1970 (CollectingCandy.com)

You can see that same Halloween witch whistle in this 1970 trade ad.   According to the annotated date in that gum scrapbook, the one included here is from 1986 – so that design lasted quite a while.

It was clear that they put a lot of promotion into it, as it received a dedicated ad the same year:

Glenn Confections – Wowee Wax Halloween Harmonica – candy trade ad – July 1970 (CollectingCandy.com) – (Source)

And that’s everything I’ve got to share today on the phenomena that are syrup-filled-wax confections. I’ll admit that I still don’t quite understand them, but I can’t argue with their appeal – people do love the things. Honestly, I’m still a bit afraid of that syrup. See you next time!

RELATED: The Strange History Behind The Birth Of Candy Hearts

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