The biggest change of the 21st century was the sexualization. Women were encouraged to be independent, youthful, though, sexually liberated and ambitious fashionistas (e.g. "sex and the city"). The media was filled with virgin teen-stars, starring as the hottest sex symbols, or children of famous becoming "it girls" after an "accidental" scandal of some kind. Reality-TV became a thing, and you could now be famous for being famous, which again started a whole new level of fame obsession. (As I mentioned in my previous post) The modern society is very loud, so one has to scream even louder for attention (e.g. Lady Gaga is to modern society what Madonna was to the 80's). The reaction was television shows, movies and music videos that seemed more like soft porn, and stage outfits that looked more like lingerie. What before had been an ideal of cool, sweet or wholesome role-models was quickly traded in for a rebellious "bombshell" look. Many turned to silicon, fake tan, and hair extensions to acquire that "flawless diva look" (which could also be described as a form of "peacocking").
Starting the new millennia with a shiny and metallic revival of the 60's futuristic style, we continued into the 2000's with the glam factor as high as ever. The new retro revival was the neon colored 80's and the psychedelic, hippie, glamorous, 70's. Bling was everywhere, fur was "classy", earrings were big, the skin was supposed to be glowing, eyeshadow and lipgloss was shimmering. Popular clothing was either cropped, cut-out, short or scooped, or in other cases just very close fitting and revealing. Do you remember the sexy pimp look, the sexy gipsy or the sexy kick-ass heroine? Sexy was the look, in almost every look.
Natural ("mousy") hair-colors were perceived as plain, and the most popular choices was blond, dark brown/black, and a range of red to purple. To spice up the hair even further, highlights, lowlights, wavy and layered hairstyles were very popular.
In the mid 2000s artist's such as Beyonce and Jennifer Lopez became celebrated for their healthy curves. Their "mixed" look made it easier to appeal equally to several groups of ethnicity, because more people were able to identify with them (I like to call this, "the exotic trend"). The light wanted to be dark and the dark wanted to be light, and it looked a bit like: Blue eyes, dark hair and tan skin vs. brown eyes, light hair and tan skin. The trend at it's peek, resulted in what I prefer to call the "fake" look, and the term "tanorexia" was born (someone who is addicted to tanning).
At the turn of the century, the typical cover/spokesmodel was exchanged for actresses and pop stars. Everyone wanted to be a Victorias secret supermodel, or at least look like one, and by 2007 eating disorders was at it's peak in Hollywood. In fact, from the year 1999 to 2010, the death of famous people suffering from anorexia was as great, as the sum of anorexia deaths (of famous people) in the rest of the 20th century alone. The media frenzy began with a growing number of underweight models and some cast members of the hit Tv-show, "Ally McBeal". Later the torch was passed on to Lindsay Lohan, Keira Knightley, Nicole Richie, Kate Bosworth, Tara Reid, and so on...
Many blamed fashion or the media in general, and the "Rachel Zoe style" was considered as a connection between the desire to be thin as a look.
In the early 2000s the silhouette was very slender to curvy-skinny. The body should appear firm, chesty or just plain super slender, but (no pun intended) very soon bootylicious was on the rise and the fuller hourglass followed.
The online experiments of the University of Regensburg had divided the modern ideal (last updated 2007) into four typical looks and suggested that there were different ideal types depending on the observer.
1. the average women's figure with "standard measures" (The girl next door, Britney Spears and Jennifer Aniston)
2. classical 90-60-90-Type, with an hourglass figure (The curvy temptress, Beyonce, Salma Hayek)
3. the sportive type: masculine, tight pelvis, but big breasts (Serena Williams and other athletic women)
4. the "Barbie type": thin, big breasts, tight pelvis, long legs (The supermodel barbie, Angelina Jolie, Tyra Banks).
This time with flaws and all, created the foundation for the body ideal and trend interpretation we have today. The line between equalization and objectification had never before been so blurred, and was the first real awakening of how damaging an unrealistic body image could be.
ICONS OF THE 21st Century
Beyonce, Britney Spears, Heidi Klum, Salma Hayek, Tyra Banks, Christina Aguilera, Kate Moss, Calista Flockhart, Jennifer Lopez, Victoria Beckham, Keira Knightley, Nicole Kidman, Adriana Lima, Gisele Bundchen, Snookit, Paris Hilton, Jessica Alba, Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Aniston, Lindsay Lohan, Nicole Richie, Angelina Jolie and Lucy Liu.
DID YOU MISS THE TWO OTHER POSTS IN THE BEAUTY IDEAL OVER THE DECADES SERIES? CLICK ON THE TWO LINKS BELOW.
"The Beauty Ideal Over The Decades", is a big subject. I divided the different eras into a series, looking at the many different ideals that has been considered as beautiful and attractive in the past.
The next post is: BEAUTY IDEAL OVER THE DECADES part 4 : THE 90's
(Photos in this post are random pictures from Tumbler or Pinterest or borrowed from Google. Unknown source.
Information collected from several sources including Wikipedia.
ETHICAL AND PERSONALIZED STYLE, FOR A "GOOD FOR YOU" WARDROBE.
Idealist style is a website and "slow blog" dedicated to ethical fashion and personalized style, including tips on how to find your very own "slow fashion" style by using color analysis, the body types system, and other slow fashion tips.»