Thursday, August 8, 2013

The History of the Bra - Going From Corsets to Comforts

For thousands of years, women were enhancing their breasts by using various tools. Different cultures employed different tools for this. The very first bras ever found appear to be from the 14th or 15th century. However, these quickly disappeared due to the invention of the corset, a contraption that was uncomfortable and restrictive, but which women had to wear.

The Corsets

Corsets were fully body shaping garments and the first of their kind. They were usually made of leather or fabric and had a boned structure. This allowed the desired shaped to be achieved. Interestingly, both men and women would wear corsets. They would lace them up extremely tightly at the back, meaning there was always a need for a second person to actually do the corsets up. It wasnâEUR(TM)t until the 1920s and the First World War that corsets were starting to get dismissed. However, to this day, women wear them as a lifestyle choice, or to create a beautiful costume.

The First Bras

In the late 1900s, the first bras started to be developed. They were initially attached to corsets, ending underneath the bust line. Because of this, the bra itself had all the room it needed. Because of World War I, there was a need for metal in the military industry, which meant women were no longer able to purchase corsets. Furthermore, because womenâEUR(TM)s rights started to be developed, they were beginning to refuse to wear the uncomfortable torture contraptions (men had long since ceased wearing them). This saw the development of the bra, made from various materials such as cotton, linen and silk. Some boning options were still available too.

The Wonderbra

In 1960, the Wonderbra was released. It had actually already existed since 1935, but it was their latest and most innovative model (one we still know today) that really made the difference. Since, all bra manufacturers have started to follow the Wonderbra design, which quickly became the biggest bestseller on the market.

Breast enhancing bras grew from there on with some being able to boost the breasts by up to four cups. There are push up bras with air pockets that can be pumped up, gel bras with removable inserts and more. Bras are no longer the torture devices they once were and are now as much a fashion statement as an item of clothing that is convenient. They come in a huge range of styles, sizes, materials and colours, meaning every woman should be able to find the right one for her.

by Celina Kash

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