History of Beauty Contests and the Ideal Female Measurements of the 1950s

History of Beauty Contests and the Ideal Female Measurements of the 1950s
This entry is part 4 of 32 in the series CheeseCake Pinup Magazine - 1953

This is an article about the ideal female measurements, and a short history of beauty contests. Did you know that the first Miss America was 5 foot 1, weighed 108lbs, had a 30 inch bust, 25 inch waist, 32 inch hips and brown hair with blue eyes? In comparison, Evelyn Ay, the 1954 winner, measured: 5’8, 132lbs, 37-24-36.

In 1938 the Mrs. America was started, and from 1947-1953 held in Asbury Park NJ but moved to Ellinor Village Florida for the 1954 contest. Mrs Erna Snyder was Mrs. America in 1954, and her measurements were: 5’4, 115 lbs, 34-23-34.

Lastly, here is a chart and a picture to demonstrate the perfect female form of the 1950s, as decided by Vincent Trotta, a Miss Universe judge. He claimed that it was proportion, so a woman could be taller or shorter, just proportional.

The “perfectly proportioned” 5’4 woman of 1953 measured:

  • shoulder slope 20 degrees
  • neck 14 and 3/4
  • 35.5 bust
  • 22.5 waist
  • 36 inch hips
  • 22 inch thighs
  • 12 inch calfs
  • 15 inch knees
  • 8.5 inch ankles

Interesting history of beauty competitions, eventhough I don’t quite understand it all!

Series Navigation<< History of Women’s Swimwear and Sports FashionsA brief history of women in sports, part II >>

About The Author

Jessica Kay Murray

Professional WordPress nerd. Lover of all things older than me. I am fascinated by early 1900s labor and feminist history, and have a sporadic addiction to reading nonfiction about those things on Archive.org. I scan old photographs and ephemera when I get really super bored. On Etsy I sell vintage clothing that I got as part of an interesting trade deal a few years ago.

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