Women's panties have changed a lot way over the centuries, but the revolution has really been in the last one
hundred years although there is a good case for saying that women's panties have changed a lot over the last fifty
years as well.
From about 1800, women wore drawers or pantaloons that were just about knee length according to fashion and many
older women were still wearing bloomers until the 1970's. In the 1970's, younger women called for skimpier
underwear and women's panties have continued to get smaller ever since
The word 'panties' is the current polite term to describe the ladies' garments that are worn around the waist.
Other words used are knickers and underpants. In the UK, most people use panties or knickers to refer to ladies'
underwear and underpants to refer to men's underwear, but that is not written in stone. Some people where there are
boys and girls refer to underwear as knickers or underpants for both sexes, but panties are definitely only
Women's panties have three distinct functions: to prevent soiling outer garments; modesty and eroticism. Women's
panties come in various forms: from the practical to the erotic. Therefore, there are several types of women's
panties to suit the occasion: large panties, bikini underwear, thongs and G-strings, among others. Women also often
wear their partners underwear too.
These days, some women like to show their panties, especially G-strings or thongs mostly to titillate. I know
that most men appreciate the sight too. A recent twist is that men are showing their underpants above their waist
band too, mimicking the ladies. I cannot say whether that has the same effect on modern women.
Some women also like to wear very sexy underwear like crutchless panties although there can be other than erotic
reasons for wearing crutchless panties. A stage further than this is not wearing any panties at all. Starlets and
young women started a trend a while ago to not wear any underwear at all and allow 'knick slips' or 'up skirt'
photographs as they 'struggled' to get out of limousines. Farrah Fawcett Majors was the first one I remember being
photographed in such a compromising situation decades ago.
Cycling shorts are the complete opposite, the ultimate turn off (well at least for me). There is no chance of
seeing anything and they are meant to be seen. A glimpse of women's panties when it seems that it was not intended
is far sexier to men than a photo of a topless model. Especially a silicone one, precisely because the operation
was done to show herself off naked. Intention detracts from sexiness.
The history of women's panties is an interesting topic. In general, as women have become more liberated socially
and politically, so they have liberated themselves more of clothing in the nether regions. Feminists may say that
increased advertising pressure has encouraged women to follow men's fashions. That might be true, but the cloth
that they used to make one pair of knickers a hundred years ago would now make a hundred pairs of women's
by +Owen Jones