The flapper style symbolized the newfound independence of women breaking free of restrictive clothing (and behavior) for the first time. The Gibson Girl, who prided herself on her long, beautiful, lush hair, was shocked when the flapper cut her's off.
Flapper skirts as feminist symbols
The flapper dispensed with corset and petticoat and reduced her undergarments to a single piece, the step-in.
Flappers also started wearing make-up, something that had previously been only worn by loose women.
The costume history image in our minds of a woman of the 'Roaring Twenties' is actually likely to be the image of a flapper. Flappers did not truly emerge until 1926. Flapper fashion embraced all things and styles modern. A fashionable flapper had short sleek hair, a shorter than average shapeless shift dress, a chest as flat as a board, wore make up and applied it in public, smoked with a long cigarette holder, exposed her limbs and epitomised the spirit of a reckless rebel who danced the nights away in the Jazz Age.
The flapper attitude was characterized by stark truthfulness, fast living, and sexual behavior. Flappers seemed to cling to youth as if it were to leave them at any moment.
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