According to National Geographic on July 5st, 1946, Michelle Bernardini, a dancer from the Casino de Paris wore the first public bikini in history. Although they know very little, it was a man named Louis Rénard, who dared to present the first two-part swimsuit that invited women of the time to show the navel. For this mechanical engineer who ran his mother’s female lingerie business, it was not easy to find a woman with the audacity to show this piece in public due to the taboos of the time.
The origin of the name of this popular summer garment isn’t very clear. However, there is a very interesting story that they say was collected from the statements of some people who participated in the event of this day. A few months before the Bikini premiere, in the Pacific Ocean; within the region called Micronesia where the Bikini Atoll was located; While the United States (USA) and the Soviet Union (USSR) were preparing for the so-called cold war, they exploded Hydrogen bombs on this terrain, which was one of the most devastating events on the planet. The story goes that when Louis Rénard arrived with the proposal to Michelle Bernardini, she was very excited and said: This swimsuit is going to be more explosive than the Bikini bomb! Then Rénard automatically thought that Bikini was the perfect name for this garment and that’s how it remained to this day.
Although the official presentation of popular Bikini was 74 years ago, National Geographic historians claim that the use of the bikini began more than 2000 years ago in ancient Greece. A clear historical antecedent of this statement lies in the «Bikinis Mosaic» located in the Italian town of Piazza Armerina, in Sicily, which still preserves the Roman villa of Casale. Here you can see the first representations of what he believes would have been the first bikinis in history and it is presumed they were mainly used for athletic activities.
The Bikini is believed to have been left to wear after the rise of Christianity and its radical thoughts against freedom and the body of women. By the 20th century, women’s swimsuits were already in two pieces, however, these covered the entire body of the woman up to the ankles and when they wanted to bathe this garment was very uncomfortable since it became a pile of fabric that made movement difficult. Faced with this situation, professional swimmer Annette Kellerman used for the first time a model of her own that a very tight one-piece that reveals her legs and shoulders, was of course arrested shortly after in the city of Boston. However, this fact left a precedent in the female community and the garment began to be worn on some beaches in Europe.