The 1960’s was a time of great change and new ideas. These changes were influenced by the major independent movements that were happening around the globe. Amongst these changes was the traditional role that women were expected to live out, the role of house-wife. Some of the causes of this sudden change in thinking can be contributed to the increasement of women in the paid workforce as well as the use of contraception. “By the end of the Sixties, more than 80 percent of wives of childbearing age were using contraception after the federal government in 1960 approved a birth control pill. This freed many women from unwanted pregnancy and gave them many more choices, and freedom, in their personal lives.” (Cite) With the gain of a women’s newly discovered independence and some change in her pocket a new market was formed.
With the use of television there were more fashion icon’s to emulate. The media took full advantage of this opportunity by creating images of what the newly found independent women should be like. It was based on a new style of fashion, not as restricting as previous years, the girdle was finally gone. Women were able to wear what they chose to wear, when they wanted to wear it. unsex clothing such as denim jeans were being worn, hem lines were rising, and the dull conservative colors of the fifties were being replaced with bright bold colors. Some of the most influential fashion icons for most women at the time were Audrey Hepburn and Twiggy.
These ladies with their boyish features would become the mold for what a women were suppose to be. It was off with the girdle and on to the diet and fitness trend. The old expectations were replaced with a new one.
With the newly developed market and the use of media like never before consumerism was in full force. Media could now brainwash its audience into new expectations of what women should be. Today not much has changed in retrospect. Women are still held to unattainable standards in media and still seeking to meet these standards no matter the danger, such as the Barbie women. Although media within the magazines and on television has not changed much there has been an increase in awareness programs that teach young women how to deal with their insecurities.
Overall there are many different influences in our world today, it is our choice on we choose to believe in. This is the luxury of living in the 21st century. We not only are surrounded by advertisement that entice us and play with are humanly weakness of desire but also we are surrounded by infinite knowledge through google. We are more equipped to handle the influences of our time but it is our responsibility to educate ourselves and our children. What truly is the freedom gained for women is their freedom in choice, they get to decide who and what they want to be and there are now more than ever an array of women icon’s to choose from.