What happens when a SCUBA suit and sex appeal are mixed together in the fashion blender? Out comes the neoprene bodycon dress! Neoprene is a fabric from the heavens for those of us who like a tight dress, but not the usual thin stretchy fabric, which can show every lump and bump rather than every curve. Neoprene holds the same form-fitting shape as rayon, but is much more forgiving and never tattles on the imperfections of say, one’s booty the way a thin rayon dress would. Politely put, it holds in the jiggle.
Neoprene seems fairly new to the fashion scene, and while that may be true besides the application of SCUBA wear, the rubbery material has been around since 1930.
Just a quick touch on the nerdy and science-based origin of the fabric; it was DuPont scientists who stumbled upon the chemically-based jelly that forms into an elastic-like compound, much like rubber. Formally known as Duprene, neoprene, lasted longer than synthetic-rubber, and was extremely durable. This made it an excellent material for items from gaskets to combat gear.
But, it wasn’t until gas was pumped into the rubbery material, creating microscopic foam cells that fashion-neoprene was born. First in wet suits, and then in many home applications, like IPad covers. Foamed neoprene can be molded to hold unique architectural shapes in dresses, skirts, etc., where normally wires or heavy starch might be required. There are a few drawbacks to the cellulite hiding fabric. First, some are allergic to the material, and others claim it may be toxic. Lastly, it can easily degrade in the presence of common household chemicals, like bleach.
No matter what, it’s clear to see that this space age fabric is here to stay! Enjoy some of these gorgeous creations!