11 Pictures Show You What the Ideal Body Has Looked Like Over the Past 100 Years

12888 People Viewed - about 31 months ago Culture

No matter the year or decade, there’s always been the notion of an ideal body for women. 

Women have been told that if they want to fit in, find a mate, or be considered attractive, they should attempt to mold themselves to whatever the prevailing beauty standards of the time are. 

Today as we’ve known what the “perfect” woman’s body looks like in 18 countries, now it’s time to take a look at the last 100 years of “ideal” bodies.

1910s: The Gibson Girl dominates.

Named after illustrator Charles Gibson and in part a holdover from Victorian constriction, the look was all about sloping backs and corseted waists. 

Does it look painful? It LOOKS FUCKING PAINFUL.

1920s: The flapper comes out.

Maybe after a decade spent all cinched and pinched in corsets, it was understandable that women wanted to dress in loose drop-waist silky things, no? 

The ideal body had a flat chest and no hips — and was generally more boyish than feminine. 

The ’20s was the decade that women gained the right to vote, and the flapper uniform reflected the new freedoms that women had.

The 1930s: Curves come into their own.

And we’re back! In part in response to the Depression, the ’30s were all about bodacious babes like Mae West (pictured left) and Jean Harlow. 

According to celeb magazine Photoplay, the prevailing look was “warmly curved” and “roundly turned” and the decade’s most exemplary figure belonged to a Mexican starlet named Dolores del Rio (pictured right) who was lauded for having all the curves.

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