Women’s swimwear has changed drastically over the years from almost-fully covered swimwear to the stringy bikini of today. Here’s an interesting look at the history of women’s swimwear
and discover how it has evolved from baggy,Guest Posting dress-like outfits to the kinds we know and love today like the Billabong Womens One Piece Swimsuits.
The 18th Century
Sea bathing in the 18th century was a relatively novel recreational activity. The term is “recreational” but during that time, people were not going sea bathing just purely for fun. The belief circulating during that period was that sea bathing has considerable health benefits. The activity was encouraged for both men and women, but women, being required to practice modest behavior during the time period, were not allowed to fully submerge themselves. During the early years of sea bathing being a popular activity, women were required to wear loose, open gowns.
The 19th Century
It was only in the 19th century that sea bathing was done more so for the fun of it, than for the health benefits one can get. The women in this time period wore bathing dresses, drawers and stockings that were made of either wool or cotton. Because of such water-absorbent materials, the dresses soaked a lot of water, making it hard for women to move. This was done to still prevent the perceived immodesty by women vigorously participating in water activities; a clear mirror to the imposed constraints upon women by the period’s patriarchal society.
During the later half of the 18th century, women’s bathing suits were undergoing changes, making the first steps into the radicalization of sea bathing apparel for women in the succeeding century. Particularly, in the 1880s to 1890s, the invention of the princess suit, which had designs that were more fit for the body.
The 20th Century
It was during this time period that women’s swimwear had the most significant changes, both in terms of its design and also in terms of the perception of people towards modesty and conservatism. By the 19th century, swimming was introduced as an Olympic sport. It was during the first appearance of women in the Olympics for swimming, that the world was also introduced to the first tank tops. The designs are very much like the designs of the tank tops that we know today like the Rip curl Womens tank tops, but with an added layer of cloth, resembling a short skirt to cover part of the thighs.
Over the next decades, the designs of women’s swimwear drastically changed to become smaller and smaller. Eventually leading to the designs we can now see today. Today, you can see casual beachgoers wearing the classic beach wears like the Rip curl Womens tank tops. All the while, the more swimming-inclined beachgoers don the modern versions of the princess suit – the Billabong Womens One Piece Swimsuits.