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From Gibson Girls to Bootylicious: how the 'ideal' female body shape has changed over 100 years

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Just like beauty norms have evolved over the last century, so has the 'ideal' body shape drastically changed decade on decade. 

Health site Greatist have looked to trends in fashion, films, pop music and observed the most high profile women at the time to put together a series of infographics which provide a look at how the perceived 'ideal' has changed over the last century.

It is fascinating to see how what is considered ideal can change dramatically in the space of just a few decades. For instance, in the 1910s, the Gibson Girl, as pictured in the pages of Charles Gibson's LIFE magazine, was the ideal, but after the dramatic effects of the First World War the carefree flapper style was taken up, with an emphasis on looking less feminine with flat chests and short hair all the rage.

Of course the graphics do not represent what all women looked like during these time periods, but they throw up some interesting pointers about how much influence the world around us has on body image, and should serve as a reminder that we should never take media perception of our bodies too seriously. The article conclude that "Body ideals, like everything else in pop culture, are a trend."

Scroll down to see the changing silhouette throughout the centuries in full. 

Gibson
Flapper
1930s
1940s
Hourglass
Twig
1970s
80s
90s
00s
Now

Words: Victoria Gray, Images: Greatist

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