Pseudo-Science Theatre: 1920
The story so far: Exactly 100 years ago, advertisers were touting the benefits of 'violet ray' treatments. All very scientific, of course… Notice how they bring in Nikola Tesla.
Famous Violet Ray Treatment for Health, Vitality and Beauty Now Possible in Your Own Home
FOR many years the wonderful results to be obtained through the application of electricity to the body have been known to the scientists. Early investigation and experimentation opened
amazing possibilities for the future development of electricity as a curative agent and a vital
source of health. Probably we all recall the first crude contrivance of a storage battery in a box from which a mild current of electricity could be passed through the body. Then came electric vibrating machines which, however, simply made use of the principle of mechanical massage and did not apply the action of electricity itself to the organs of the body.
The Discovery of Violet Rays
It was Nikola Tesla, one of the most brilliant of modern scientists, who mystified the world with the discovery of the peculiar Violet Ray. Tesla had found a way to convert a current of electricity into high frequency discharges. This can be described in simple terms as the diffusion of a solid current into a mistlike discharge. It is similar to a light, invigorating spray of water compared to the force of a solid stream1.
One of the most remarkable properties of the Violet Ray is its ability to penetrate solid bodies, even including glass, which acts as an insulator for electricity in its ordinary forms. We are all familiar with this phenomenon in the use of the X-Ray2.
The Violet Ray Treatment
It was in the discovery of Violet Rays that the ideal way was found of applying electricity to the human body and obtaining all its wonderful, beneficial effects without any of the
dangers that might attend its use in its more violent forms3.
It is just like the refreshing, invigorating effects of a shower bath upon the system as compared to the shock of a solid torrent of water.
Now imagine this massage applied not only to the surface of the body, but to every part, every organ, every single cell, internal as well as external4. No wonder that a Violet Ray treatment makes one feel "completely made over" and has such a delightful tonic effect upon the system. It acts upon the brain cells just as upon the other cells of the body, and that is why it is so often used by business men to overcome brain fag5 and mental sluggishness.
Wonderful new Machine Now Brings Violet Ray Treatments to Your Home
The Violet Ray treatment has long since passed its experimental stage6. As its remarkable results were demonstrated, it received the endorsement of eminent physicians and scientists7. Violet Ray machines became a part of the equipment of hospitals and sanitariums in the treatment of specific diseases and then were adopted by famous beauty specialists because of their effectiveness in eliminating skin diseases and blemishes such as eczema, blackheads, pimples, etc., and bring the glow of healthful color to the complexion.
It is almost impossible to list all the various disorders for which Violet Rays are used, for by restoring normal activity and life to every part of the body, they eliminate the abnormal conditions whose presence is generally responsible for any local ailment. For example, as the free circulation of blood through the body is established8, congestion is removed, eliminating the cause of headaches, catarrh, nervousness and insomnia. The same principle applies to the treatment of neuritis, rheumatism, lumbago, indigestion and neuralgia.
Hitherto, however, the costly apparatus necessary for giving Violet Ray treatments has limited them only to the well-to-do who could afford the time and money to go to an establishment equipped with the Violet Ray machine.
But now scientists have perfected a new Violet Ray machine, operating on the same
principle, but smaller in size, more convenient to use and infinitely less expensive in cost. This little machine is adapted to home use and requires no special electrical equipment. The wire which supplies the current simply fits into any electric light socket and the machine is ready for use. Where no current is available, special equipment is furnished at small extra cost.
Now, anyone can enjoy all the benefits of the famous Violet Ray treatment. Those who are suffering from some particular ailment will appreciate the wonderful help this handy new instrument brings to them. And others will be delighted to avail themselves of its wonderful tonic effects in creating health and strength, vitalizing the nerves, energizing the cells of the brain and body.
Already users of the machine have written enthusiastic letters to the manufacturers, telling of the results obtained through it – how it enables them to sleep better – how it has soothed their nervous troubles – how it has cleared and beautified the complexion. And even those who thought they were well before say that Violet Rays have brought them an entirely new feeling of health, strength and energy.
Try the Violet Ray Treatment Without Cost
In order that every one may know what Violet Rays will do in his or her own particular case, the distributers of this new machine are willing to send it to any one interested for free examination and trial. This liberal offer enables you to enjoy the delightful sensation of the Violet Ray treatment without any cost or obligation to buy unless you want to keep and own the machine. It is only necessary to mail the coupon below and you will receive full details of this special free trial offer.
Picture-Play Magazine, March-August 1920.