Jan 212012
Rooney Mara - W Magazine - Feb., 2011

Is Rooney Mara making small sexy again? - Photo via Wmagazine.com

In a recent Slate Magazine column, Simon Doonan cites Rooney Mara’s Dragon Tattoo nude scenes as evidence suggesting the wispy waif look of ’60s “cool girls like Twiggy, Ali McGraw, [and] Mia Farrow” could make a comeback soon. And even though he additionally cites European health scares caused by leaky implants, he fails to definitively predict the answer to his own sub-headline “Could small breasts make a comeback?”

Jacqueline Burt, blogger for Café Mom’sThe Stir”, also looks to Ms. Mara, but points out her off-screen glamour as she walked the red carpet of the Golden Globe awards along with other small-busted celebs Claire Danes, Charlize Theron, and Evan Rachel Wood. Burt suggests the rejection of cosmetic surgery by more and more movie stars is indicative of a return to the glamorous flapper style of the jazz age.

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While the return of streamlined styles could be great news for the fashionably curve-challenged and less top-heavy, Canadian columnist Wency Leung asks the question  (in response to Slate’s column), “Are breast sizes like hairstyles or hemlines, whose trendiness changes with time?” She points out that well-endowed women often feel self-conscious and often choose to surgically downsize.

Before asking readers to comment on whether breast size are comparable to fashion trends, Leung steers her readers to the BBC documentary called My Big Breasts and Me, in which women “express frustration over… and feelings of self-consciousness about their large breasts…” She makes no mention, however, of the sister film, My Small Breasts and I, which documents the emotional and physical pain endured by women who wish they had – and in one case, tried to attain – bigger breasts through nonsurgical means.

I don’t think either Ms. Leung or Mr. Doonan intended to delve deeply into the psyche of the Western woman, but their articles bring up inevitable questions about how women feel about themselves and the relationship between fashion trends and self-image.

Compaerie: Elsa Hosk (34B-23-35.5) wearing Aerie's unlined Vintage Lace Bustier (left) and Aerie's "double-whoa" Drew bra.

With minimizer bras trimming two inches from a silhouette and maximizer bras adding two cup sizes, does fashion reinforce negative body image (whether it be too big or too small)? Do brands like Itty Bitty Bra and The Little Bra Company help? Do preteen push-up bras and plus-size marketing to “real women” make things worse?

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  6 Responses to “Is Small the Next Big Thing? Should It Matter?”

  1. Elsa looks gorgeous in the Aerie unlined bustier. In the Drew bra, not so much. Double oh-no.

  2. The Drew bra doesn’t make a flattering silhouette of the top of her breasts. I much prefer the bustier shot!

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