Beauty Ideal In The Victorian Era

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How did the beauty ideal evolve throughout the years?
The ideal of the perfect human body can been seen as a result of culture. Every culture is different or differs in at least a few aspects. A lot of factors in a culture contribute to the formation of a beauty ideal. These factors can be religious functions, economy, advertisements, etcetera. The beauty ideal as we know it nowadays, of course, differs from the ones ages ago or at least as far as we know. So not only culture changes the beauty ideal but also the time we live in. In this chapter the change over time in the beauty ideal will be studies and discussed.
Prehistory
Since this is a long time ago, not many is known about the beauty ideal of this era. The prehistoric beauty ideal
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The Victorian Era was the Era in which women tried to achieve the smallest waistline possible. It was the Era of the corsets. Bustles, hoop and layered petticoats became highly popular as well.
The corset’s popularity increased immensely in the Victorian Era. As women were expected to have the smallest waist possible, they wore a corset. When a woman wore a corset often, it was said that her intestines would “move” closer towards one another as shown in figure 10. This would then eventually result in the women achieving the super small waistline. Figure 11 Psychical effects of wearing a corset (Hau, 2003)
The Roaring Twenties
The Era typified for the introduction of Coco Chanel, shorter hemlines and flappers. The ultimate purpose during the roaring twenties was the boyish look. Women were aimed to hide their curves. Some would even bind their chest with strips of cloth to be as flat as possible and, thereby, achieve this boyish look. The short flapper dress and loose girdles became fairly popular and replaced the corsets of the Victorian Era. The reason for this boyish look was because the women wanted to become equal so they started to dress more
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This is not surprising. The thing that is surprising is what influences this change in beauty ideals. In ancient times the beauty ideal was influenced by the current religion. The gods and goddesses are a representation of perfection and therefore people tried to find their own perfection. This lead to very masculine bodies for the men and thin bodies for women. Later on the beauty ideal gets more influenced by the political behavior in a country. In the renaissance people started to revolt against the religious government and did not pay any attention to their bodies anymore. And a lot later in the 1930s and 1940s politicians as Hitler choose a beauty ideal. In addition to that, it is a fact that economics always play a large role in finding a beauty ideal. Everyone always wants to show off their abilities and their wealth by looking like the beauty ideal. In Roman times free and wealthy women would have long hair because they do not need to work and nowadays the upper class spends tons of money on plastic surgery to achieve the beauty ideal. Therefore the beauty ideal does change a lot, but still some similarities between the eras can be

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