Beauty standards are a weird thing. They seem to change from decade to decade, which pretty much means that someone that we find attractive now, might become someone that no longer is considered attractive in ten, fifteen years. Of course, the opposite can also apply, so I guess there’s always hope.
To keep up with the changes, let’s take a look at the ways in which beauty standards have changed in the last 100 years.
A little over a century ago, the most attractive female form was the “Gibson Girl”. They got their name from Charles Dana Gibson, an illustrator that drew the female form and because of it somehow single-handedly decided the beauty standards for an entire decade.
The roaring twenties toned the beauty standards down a notch. Flapper girls, as they were called, were the ultimate form of beauty in that decade. They were mostly defined by their short haircuts, short skirts, interest in Jazz music and being somewhat rebellious in nature.
After the curvy Gibson Girls and the somewhat more normal-looking Flapper girls, the 30s welcomed back curves in the female beauty standards. This is when the first typical “blond bombshells” start showing up on the silver screen.
Stop me if you’re seeing a pattern here, but a decade after the curvier bombshells hit the silver screen, beauty standards shifted back to skinnier girls. The so-called “screen queens”, think Katherine Hepburn, were the ultimate beauty standard for women in that decade.
That’s right – back to curvier women. The 50s were mostly known as the decade of Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor, so that’ll tell you what you need to know about the beauty standards in that decade. Sidenote: this was also the decade that weight gain tablets were available for the general public. Yup.
In news that nobody saw coming, the 60s went back to more skinny beauty standards, but this time they actually went for the petite look. The supermodel most known for this look was Twiggy, and the whole look also meant clothing looked more child-like.
If you say “beauty standards in the seventies”, Farah Fawcett instantly comes to mind. Thin hips were all the rage back then, but everything else was allowed to have curves in it. And let’s not forget the whole broad shoulders thing in fashion. That was weird.
Another decade, another way to objectify women. This decade was all about looking like a supermodel – skinny, but athletic. This of course also explains why aerobics videos were so popular in that decade.
The 90s was a bit of a weird phase for our planet. You’d expect beauty standards to go back to more curves, but the 90s broke the decade-old tradition and went for a more androgynous look as beauty standard. Think Kate Moss, for example.
And to end it off, the naughties. They were mostly known for showing abs and always looking tan. Think Britney Spears or Christina Aguilera at the start of their careers, and how they always looked like they just came back from doing 500 sit-ups in the tanning bed.