The Thin Craze of the 1960's

by Erika Cox
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The 1960's brought on a whole slew of fads, fashions, and styles very much different from the 1950's. You can say, the styles were much bolder and revolutionary from the proper and prim attitudes and styles of the 1950's.

Clothes that would have never been accepted prior to the 1960's were popular, like the mini-skirt and form-fitting dresses and skirts. Another fad or style that became popular in the 1960's was being thin, especially for females. In order to wear the popular mini-skirts and other form-fitting dresses, many women had to be thin enough.

But the bigger reason why thin was becoming more and more popular was because of models like Twiggy, a popular model in the 1960's known for her extremely thin appearance, showcasing their extremely thin bodies.

All of sudden, thinness became popular with company executives, the entertainment business, and society as a whole. It was beautiful to be thin. Prior to the 1950's, actresses were pretty much shapely figured like Marilyn Monroe. Marilyn Monroe, and other popular actresses, had full-figures and this was the popular look but all that changed with the 1960's. However just being thin was not enough, skinny or adolescent thin was more attractive and desirable. A straight up and down figure, very small hips, buttocks, and breasts became the shape to have.

The curvy shapes of women in the 1950's and 1940's looked much better, not to mention healthier, than models and actresses in the 1960's appeared. Let me make it clear that when I say full-figured I don't mean large or heavy, I mean a figure that represents a curvy shape.

This obsession with thinness that started in the 1960's with models like Twiggy has caused women, including those in the modeling and entertainment industries, to suffer from serious eating disorders that have caused death. Karen Carpenter, a popular singer in the early 1970's struggled with Anorexia Nervosa and eventually died from the disease.

I'm not sure that anyone had eating disorders prior to the 1960's because it wasn't popular to be super thin and it wasn't pressured to be thin, but the eating disorders definitely started to appear in the late 1960's because so many women were trying to be thin like Twiggy. Other than models appearing paper-thin, I don't know why thin became so popular during the 1960's, perhaps it had something to do with the music industry being flooded with British music groups and that many of the fads and styles in England were becoming popular here in America. Twiggy was also born in England.

Perhaps thinness also became very popular during the 1960's because of the increasingly popularity of self-expression and women's rights movements during this time that allowed women to shed clothes and bare more body. Being thin allowed them to comfortably wear clothes like the mini-skirt, which maybe at that time stood for some sort of freedom and self-expression.

Being thin and shedding weight may have given some women the ability to fill better about themselves. Another reason could have been the onset of the sexual revolution. This thin look has remained an attraction or desire for many women even today. Models, actresses, and everyday women strive to be paper-thin. However, this has caused problems.

Paper-thin is not attractive and shouldn't be. Unfortunately, the desire to be thin has caused some women to have eating disorders or for bigger women to have low self-esteem if they are not thin. The fact that it is attractive to some males is a little disturbing.

Someone being that thin with an adolescent girl's figure shouldn't be attractive to any adult. Maybe it's just me but this attractiveness to a shape that is not fully developed and does not represent what a woman's shape looks like but what a girl's shape looks like is disgusting and somewhat perverted. In my opinion, women should be shaped like women not girls or boys.

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