Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but that eye can see things very differently depending on where (and when) it is. Buzzfeed’s video staff explored this idea by creating a video with live models showing us how the concept of an ideal woman’s body type has changed throughout history.


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We all probably have some idea of how women from all of the different historical periods in the video dressed, but the idea that there were different ideal body types may not have occurred to many of us. The uniform white bathing suits that all of the models in the video are wearing help accentuate the differences between their bodies, doing away with other potential historical elements that we might have focused on otherwise like clothing or jewelry.

It all just goes to show that there’s no one right way to interpret feminine beauty. Which historical period do you think “got it right?”

More info: Youtube

Ancient Egypt (c. 1292-1069 B.C.)

– Slender
– Narrow shoulders
– High waist
– Symmetrical face

Ancient Greece (c. 500-300 B.C.)

– Plump
– Full-bodied
– Light skin
– Women were considered “disfigured” versions of men

Han Dynasty (c. 206 B.C.-220 A.D.)

– Slim waist
– Pale skin
– Large eyes
– Small feet

Italian Renaissance (c. 1400-1700)

– Ample bosom
– Rounded stomach
– Full hips
– Fair skin

Victorian England (c. 1837-1901)

– Desirably plump
– Full-figured
– Cinched waist
– Women wore corsets to achieve the ideal body shape

Roaring Twenties (c. 1920s)

– Flat-chested
– Downplayed waist
– Short bob hairstyle
– Boyish figure

Golden Age Of Hollywood (c. 1930s – 1950s)

– Curvy
– Hourglass figure
– Large breasts
– Slim waist

Swinging Sixties (c. 1960s)

– Willowy
– Thin
– Long, slim legs
– Adolescent physique

Supermodel Era (c. 1980s)

– Athletic
– Svelte, but curvy
– Tall
– Toned arms

Heroin Chic (c. 1990s)

– Waifish
– Extremely thin
– Translucent skin
– Androgynous

Postmodern Beauty (c. 2000s-Today)

– Flat stomach
– “Healthy” skinny
– Large breasts and butt
– Thigh gap
– Women regularly get plastic surgery to achieve their desired look