Fashion is definitely the most versatile industry of all. Fashion trends have changed from decade to decade, and sometimes from year to year. We have faced some very unusual and extreme outfits, materials, footwear, make-up, hairstyles, and even body transformations. However, only a few made the top of the list.
Especially the one in the form of paint was and it will always be toxic. Lead make-up has caused many severe physical problems, such as muscle paralysis, facial tremors, and even death. In spite of it all, it remained popular for centuries. The first to introduce this type of make-up were Ancient Egyptian women. They coloured and defined their faces using malachite and mesdemet, which was made from copper minerals and lead. The Grecians continued to put white lead over their faces. Moreover, they used crushed mulberries as rouge.
In the 1400 AD, it was believed that the whiter the skin woman had the more beautiful she was. The French, the Italians and the English went to an even bigger extreme, and tried to use the lead paint along with Arsenic so they could lighten their skin. The only sensible woman was Queen Victoria who banned a make-up of all forms. She led everyone to believe it was unnatural and vile. However, that did not convince the majority to stop using it.
Fortunately, make-up became tamer, and with no lead in its formula. From the 1900’s make-up was a trend, a necessity and an essential part of every woman’s daily routine.
Tight lacing i.e. corset training is the practice of continuously wearing a very tightly laced corset in order to achieve an hourglass body figure. No matter how great this sounds, if at all, it is not healthy whatsoever. Tight lacing has led to problems with digestion, breathing problems, and permanent deformity.
Every time we think about Lady Gaga, some extravagant piece of clothing or footwear comes to mind. Well, this time designer Alexander McQueen is responsible for Gaga’s bizarre shoes. Namely, the Armadillo shoe, gained its popularity thanks to Gaga’s music video for the song “Bad Romance”.
Different designers have tried to copy or at least put some of the amazing shoe style into their designs ever since. I will admit it is quite fashion forward and unbelievably bold move for a designer to make such footwear. Nevertheless, who would actually wear these in public? Could you imagine yourself dancing all night in a pair of those? I think not. I would barely be able to make one step to my doorway, let alone walk more than two steps.
Even though it may seem extreme and unsightly, tattooing the cornea has been around for thousands of years. Moreover, it has valid, medical applications, especially for people who suffer from scarred eye tissue. However, inserting dye or ink into the sclera just so you could stand out, is relatively new trend. Hopefully, it will not live as long as cornea tattooing, because I really do not need to see people’s sclera in red, yellow, green, blue, or any other colour for that matter. It is simply not natural and pleasant to look at.
Ear and nose piercing are particularly widespread, and have been for years. Moreover, nose piercing dates all the way back to 1500 BC. Furthermore, African and American tribal cultures have started the tradition of lip and tongue piercing. The reasons, for body piercing are various. While some do it for spiritual or religious reasons, others simply try to find a way to self-express themselves, to reach a certain aesthetic value, or to rebel against their culture.
This tight-fitting skirt got its name from the term for tying a horse’s feet together to keep it from running of. Therefore, we can conclude the hobble skirts were designed to slow women down. The first hobble skirt was created by French fashion designer Paul in 1910. His revolutionary design hugged the legs close and cinched in at the ankles. Quite uncomfortable, I would say.
We have seen some pretty unusual trends over the years, decades and centuries. Some of them were appealing and others not as much, but they have definitely made their mark. Who knows what will astonish us in the future. We will just have to wait and see.