Lingerie By Decade- 1970's

Here we go! We're moving right along on our mini-series; Lingerie By Decade. Click here to catch up on the evolution of underpinnings over the years. 


By the end of the 1960's social activism, equal rights, and environment protection are on the forefront and in the news. With the feminist movement women are literally letting go of all that binds. The bra becomes a political message and it becomes clear that not wearing one can symbolize equality. Bras were burned and it became a big deal to assert your freedom. All of a sudden not wearing a bra is in style. This also coincides with a natural movement. Natural hair, natural colors, a softer look become fashionable as a result. 

Jane Birkin

Jane Birkin

Cool girls don't wear bras. T-shirts become popular and a natural look underneath is all the rage. The ultra-shaping pointy bras of the 1940's-1960's are out. Nipples are in. 


If you need to wear a bra, don't worry! Manufacturers have thought of it all! 


Due to softer jersey garments seamless undergarments become popular. The effect is to not look like you are wearing anything underneath. Flesh tones, while limited in shades, are popular. 

La Perla SS 1976

La Perla SS 1976


Shapewear as we've known it so far becomes uncommon. Women are moving more and laced up and stiff rubbery shapewear is out of style and old fashioned. One piece bodysuits become popular and are a great alternative, especially underneath your jersey wrap dress.


Pantyhose replaces stockings and garters. If you needed some shaping it is now built in to your hosiery with what we now call control top!


Nightgowns and sleepwear follow suit. Long and lean. Languid and minimal. The frou-frou-ness of the 1960's is gives way to a more romantic look.


It's interesting to note that while women are gaining more power, the look is softer and more yielding than in previous decades. Towards the end of the decade that starts to change as Janet Reger hits the scene in the UK. She brings back a decadence to lingerie with the notion that women can have both. Meaning a career in a man's world and be ultra-feminine. This will influence lingerie makers (like Victoria's Secret shown below) and bring us straight into the 1980's with the return of the 3 piece set. 

Victoria's Secret. Late 1970's. 

Victoria's Secret. Late 1970's. 

Stay tuned for next month's installment. The 1980's! 

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