models show off 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
models show off 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type models show off 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
jan 28, 2015

models show off 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type

models show off 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
gifs by designboom / video courtesy of buzzfeedvideo




throughout the course of history, the standard of female beauty has significantly shifted, shaping the ways in which women look and are perceived. buzzfeedvideo has compiled a short feature with a diverse cast of models, who take the viewer on a journey through the last 3,000 years of beauty. from the curvaceous bodies of the renaissance period in italy, to the boyish, 1920s figures in america, the dramatic evolution proves societies’ standards are constantly unfolding. take a look at the video below to follow history’s course through trends following everything from full-figures to tiny feet.



women’s ideal body types throughout history
video courtesy of BuzzFeedVideo

video shows transformation of 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
women bombarded with different standards of beauty ‘should’ be skinny, but healthy, with large breasts and rear

video shows transformation of 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
slight and pale typified the ‘heroin chic’ look of the 1990s

video shows transformation of 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
from the 1930s through 1950s, women flaunted curvier bodies with slim waists

video shows transformation of 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
during the 1920s in the united states, beautiful women bore a curveless, boyish body

video shows transformation of 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
beauty in renaissance italy meant a full-figured body, including large hips and breasts

video shows transformation of 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
during the han dynasty period of chinese history, women were expected to have slim bodies and pale skin

video shows transformation of 3,000 years of women’s ideal body type
women in ancient egypt have been depicted as slender, with high waists and slim shoulders

  • Wow, so disrespectful description of thin girls.
    Lots of prejudices.

    ysl says:
  • Why is the ancient Egyptian woman black? That’s not historically correct and the renaissance women weren’t that fat, a few paintings of larger women doesn’t mean they were all 200+ pounds

    George Zimmerman says:
  • wow, all these fatties trying to rewrite history to make it seem like they are attractive is pretty funny.

    Michael says:
  • Marilyn Monroe wasn’t fat.

    anon says:
  • While I appreciate the effort to illustrate the changing perception of the feminine ideal, I would like to nudge a few of the titles in order to more accurately reflect the proper historical eras of some of the body types represented. The Italian renaissance ideal was generously endowed, robust, even, the curvacious beauty shown here more properly fits the idea of the Rubenesque woman and thus, belongs more appropriately to the Baroque era of the 17th century. That said, their Northern renaissance counterparts tended more ideally to very slender, pale, doll-like forms with small, wide-set breasts, sloping shoulders and generous abdomen as evidenced by the art of Jan van Eyck, Lucas Cranach the Elder Hieronymus Bosch, or Jean Fouquet.

    In the twentieth century, while it is certainly true that by today’s standards, Marilyn Monroe would have been a ‘Plus-Size’ model, your representation – while still showing the requisite ‘hour-glass’ figure – is still larger than the ideal. Think more Betty Grable, Eva Gardner, Elizabeth Taylor than Rosemary Clooney or Adele. They are all still very beautiful women, though.

    Laura says:
  • way to leave out some of the models…

    ysl and george zimmerman should be ashamed of themselves

    model says:
  • To ysl and George Z, history of ancient Eygpt which is in AFRICA, is that the people were of black , dark skin nobody was of fair skin Cleopatra was dark skined(she was not Elizabeth Taylor). This should’nt be a concern to bring up anyway, what you should concerned about is that all women are BEAUTIFUL no matter what the colour of their skin is.

    M says:
  • So many miss conceptions, agreed with M and Laura… And Just one thing to be said to Buzz Feed and to Design Boom Editor who wrote the captions “History of Beauty” by Umberto Eco.

    Chicken Feet says:
  • 90’s or 2000 version is the best.

    nn says:
  • I agree that the golden age of Hollywood one is a bit misleading, but the geniuses at the top forget several things. In several eras, extra weight on a woman was considered a sign of wealth and prosperity. Women with wider hips and more weight were thought to be more fertile and have more successful births. Some of the models used in this video who would be considered overweight by some nations medical standards would also have had very small waists from the corsetry which became popular starting at the dawn of the 16th century. These modern models haven’t had their waists trained and organs confined since adolescence like the women of say, the late 19th century. Also yes, 4,000 years ago before the Muslim (predominately Arab) conquest of Egypt in 639 AD, and before Alexander conquered the known world, the Egyptians were often darker, which isn’t uprising considering the proximity to Nubia and all the dynasty toppling, war back and forth shit they had going on back then. Hollywood has traditionally cast white women and men in roles of pharaoh’s/queens and ancient Egyptian peoples. It’s called whitewashing. Educate yourselves ladies and gents.

    -whiter than sour cream college student

    almt says:
  • What negative comments!
    Appreciate the concept, the entire compilation.
    Why people twist their own crap ideals into another’s work is beyond me? Yeah, so you see it differently. Well, it isn’t YOUR IDEA! Judgement of others talents & gifts, because they aren’t yours, is whats wrong with the world today.

    Ruth says:
  • Nobody should get mad about facts, and these are just facts, not opinions. Its a hard subject because it looks like we are trying to put people into boxes, but it is more a result of cultural studies.
    I am working on a similar project and i get some bad feedback too, all-tough originally i designed the infographic to give people perspective on beauty and therefore gain more body confidence.

    Frederik Drost says:

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