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About 30 years ago, women showing their “bare midriff” became a popular trend. While hippies did use tube tops and halters to sport their freedom ideals, it really came into view when the trends of belly-button piercings and lower back tattoos gained popularity. Of course, how else to show them off but to expose your midriff? Although this trend has seen and lost its glory days, it has impacted the world with its fashion statements as well as its dress code violations.

In the fashion world, the “bare midriff” is seen in various lengths of crop tops, tube tops, and halters; as two-piece or cutout pieces in swimwear and dresses; or even simply as bras worn as tops. Following the fashion wear came debate on who could wear it, what sizes could wear it, when it was appropriate to wear it, where it was acceptable to wear it, and why were people so fixated over something as simple as showing skin?


set of minimalistic tattoos on a person's ribcage
Photo by Content Pixie from Unsplash

Who Can Wear It? The simple answer to this is ANYONE. Any gender or sexuality should be able to wear something that shows their midriff without getting categorized unfairly for it. Before the era of women not being as scandalous for showing their midriff, there were males who would wear cropped shirts while working to help keep them cooler in the workplace. While diversity and acceptance is more widely traditional in today’s time, there was a point where workplace comfort became gay categorization (in a bad way). However, what a person wears should not define who they are!

What Body Sizes Can Wear It? This question stems from the judgemental comments made about heavier people wearing clothing that reveals their “unwanted” body. Typically, any midriff showing clothing is advertised and accepted to be worn by people who are thin, lean, or with less fat in their midriff area. However, the world is in the process of evolving to accept any person of any size that wants to wear really cute and incredibly stylish clothing if they wish to do so. This progress is so important for people to learn that the most important person is themselves, and one should embrace their body no matter the size as long as it is what they truly want and feel comfortable with.


women with different body types
Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels

When Is It Appropriate & Where Is It Acceptable To Wear It? As the “bare midriff” trend grew, the issue of its scandalous nature grew as well. This is heavily seen within school system dress codes that vary between each school, but all typically prevent anyone from wearing clothing that reveals midriff. Furthermore, many gyms have this dress code in place as well (but its contradictions will be further explained in another article, stay on the lookout). While these questions may not have a definite overall answer, the scandalous stigma of showing midriff, or skin in general, may be too exaggerated than it actually needs to be.

Why Are People So Fixated On Showing Midriff? As for the general public, everyone has their own ideals towards this question. Some may not like midriff revealing clothing at all, and some may think it is more for loungewear than everyday wear. However, whether one’s ideals are different from another, it is crucial to respectfully accept their decisions as their own, especially if it does you no harm. To reiterate, anyone should be allowed to wear what makes them feel confident and comfortable without anyone assuming their personality based off of their looks.

Hello, my name is Belle! I am an Art Major (Photography, Graphic Design, and Printmaking) at VSU with an Associate of Art degree from CCGA. I think everyone would agree I could be the face of all Virgos known to Earth. But I'm glad to be getting back into writing, and some of my other passions, again! I hope you all enjoy all the random things I end up writing <3
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