And now for the history of bras under three minutes
Here at HelloGiggles, we love those “through the ages” beauty videos. Not only do we get a mini-history lesson, but we also get to see how men and women from across the globe dressed themselves in the last century. It’s rad. Though we all have a bit of background information on how women used to look throughout the years, how much do you know about the fashion? Well, how much do you know about the under-the-clothing fashion? If you are anything like me, you haven’t spent much time thinking about the underwear of ye olden days —until now. The newest “history of” video, presented by Glamour Magazine, is all about the brassiere.
The first bra the beautiful woman puts on is called “the mamillare,” a bra that was worn during the Roman Empire. I’m not gonna lie —a mamillare is basically a strip of cloth said to disguise breasts because the Romans didn’t like them. Okay whatever, Roman Empire! Breasts are amazing. Though I suppose it might have been able to support some women’s breasts, ultimately this piece of cloth seems more like a loincloth and less like support for women’s bodies. But, it was the Roman Empire and luckily things have changed.
The Symington comes later on, because the Roaring ’20s were much more fun than the corset-wearing days of the 19th century. The Symington helped reduce the natural curves of a woman’s body, mostly because women in the ’20s were more androgynous than in previous years. The flapper days were all about short bob haircuts and flat chests. But not all women in the 1920s were about dancing and hiding their bodies. In the later 1920s, the Maiden Form was introduced as counteraction to the whole androgynous look of the Symington. What I love about these two bras are the fact that women had choices! To each their own. The Maiden Form is also a style of bra that is definitely still found today.
Next, we meet the very familiar underwire bra. Underwire bras were introduced in the 1930s, and like you all probably know, it lifts and supports (and separates). Many of your bras are probably underwire bras and most of you probably think of Phoebe taking out the wire in her bra to help unlock the car in that one episode of Friends. Just me? OK. And hey, even though underwire can be uncomfortable, isn’t it nice that women started to find support in the 30s? Good for our breasts.
Though you may have thought Madonna invented the “bullet bra,” (I did) it turns out those pointy bras were around in the 1950 and ’60s.
The 1960s also saw the introduction of the “no bra” bra or the “barely there” bra or the “I would never wear this ever” bra. Think Jenny in Forrest Gump. The reason these bras are super empowering? Women were starting to do whatever they wanted.
The 1990s were a fantastic place for us all, am I right? Though I wasn’t wearing a bra in the early ’90s, I do remember Wonderbras everywhere. The Wonderbra was the first bra to not only lift and support, but to not separate. The whole idea of a Wonderbra is to get that cleavage, ladies. You could have it all in ’90s —a career, a family, and a Wonderbra.
The last bras were are introduced to are the “smart memory bra,” which reacts to the temperature of your body and is CRAZY comfortable and the “future bra,” which we will meet in the future when robots need bras.
Honestly, though we all probably have different opinion on bras and fashion in general, it is quite amazing to see the history of how we have supported one of our most important assets. I am so happy we have come from cloths and tight corsets and are now able to choose between the dozens of options to support our ladies.
Check out the video here:
(All images via YouTube)