When was bikini invented? A short history



The interesting history of how bikini was invented

The history of bikinis is not that long, but it has an interesting start. The emergence of bikinis has changed not only fashion but also various aspects of society.

Bikini is a special type of swimsuit, and this is exactly one of the most popular women's swimwear. Bikini was created in 1946.

When was bikini invented? In 1946

The creator of the bikini was Louis Réard, an automotive engineer from France. His family owned a women's underwear boutique, where Réard probably found the idea.

Rear saw that as they were sunbathing, women were constantly moving their swimsuit parts to keep their body exposed to the sun, which was otherwise impossible - because of the swimsuit models that were worn at the time. This was the reason for making the smallest swimsuit by then, so Rear made a swimsuit for which he used only 194 square inches of fabric. The first bikini had a "newspaper" pattern,

Louis Réard on Wikipedia
Bikini invented for beach fashion
Bikini invented for beach fashion 

How the name of the swimsuit model - the bikini was created?

Réard's main competitor before him made "the smallest swimwear for women", but Réard made it even smaller. As the competitive swimsuit was called "Atom", Réard, to emphasize his idea as a better swimsuit, gave his swimwear model the name "Bikini".

Who made the first bikini? Louis Réard, French automotive engineer

And here's why.

At the time Rear created the smallest swimsuit for women, on the first day of July 1946, Americans conducted a nuclear test at an atoll in the South Pacific. The name of the atoll undergoing the nuclear test was Bikini.

Just four days after this nuclear test, which was a major topic around the world, another news broke that shook the world. Louis Réard presented his swimwear in Paris, and the ad accompanying this creation was "Bikini: the atomic bomb."

The problem that Rear faced, even before exhibiting his creation, was the problem with finding a model to wear this swimsuit and show it to the world. However, Micheline Bernardini an exotic dancer at the Paris Casino agreed to it.

National Bikini Day: Who invented the bikini? French engineer Louis Réard
Navel showing two piece bikini
Navel showing two piece bikini 

The World Scandal


Réard's invention, the smallest swimsuit, was the worldwide scandal all newspapers were writing about. It was banned in Europe because it was declared inappropriate by the Catholic Church, as well as by the governments of Spain, Italy, and Belgium. Although it originated in France, it did not go well there. In bikinis, women could not sunbathe on the beaches of the Atlantic, while in the Mediterranean it was allowed.

One detail was crucial that this swimsuit model encountered such violent reactions around the world. Aside from being made of very little material, what represented a complete revolution in swimwear is that, while wearing bikinis, a navel is seen on women.

By then, there were also two-piece‌ swimsuits, but the lower parts were so deep that, on the women who wore you could never see the navel.

That was considered beautiful at the time, but when the bikini arrived - the opinion of beautiful and attractive changed a little.

The popularity of bikinis

Although it was created in 1946, the bikini was not too popular until 1953. One significant event happened and the bikini gained popularity, which it still has today.

When Bridget Bardot first wore a bikini in public, the bikini became what it is today. It was the first springboard for the new and smallest women's swimwear model. After that, the dust slowly subsided, and the bikini became a mandatory part of every beach and summer vacation.

The bikini turns 70. From Brigitte Bardot and Ursula Andress to Cameron Diaz and Marine Vacth
Actual designer bikini 2020
Actual designer bikini 2020 
Yoann
About the author - Yoann
Yoann is a French fashion business consultant passionate about spending time in swimwear by the water. He has been living near beaches and in hotels all around the world, during his year long solo world tour, his international manager career, or his 6 years as a digital nomad: Bali, Cartagena, Dubai, Odessa, Panama, Phuket, Tahiti to name a few.
 




Comments (0)

Leave a comment