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The “ideal” female body type has changed through the years

July 15, 2022
February 2, 2024

If you’ve ever found yourself wishing for this actress’ waistline or that model’s legs, bear this in mind: our concept of the “ideal” female body isn’t static.

Table of Contents

Five diverse women with different body types and shapes

If you’ve ever found yourself wishing for this actress’ waistline or that model’s legs, bear this in mind: our concept of the “ideal” female body isn’t static.

Beauty standards, predominantly body types, have changed throughout the decades and will continue to do so. When we entered the 21st century, diversity and inclusion became fundamental pillars of society, which is why the concept of the “ideal” figure is constantly in flux.

If you’re curious to find out how standards have fluctuated throughout the years, read on.

How body standards have changed through the years

Body Standards throughout the years

Although women haven’t been forced to squeeze themselves into corsets for a century or so, the media messaging and societal pressures to achieve an “ideal” body continue.

At the moment, we’re seeing a resurgence of larger hips and a fuller bust of the 1950s, à la Marilyn Monroe. In the swinging ’60s, however, fashion icons like Twiggy took the “ideal” female body shape in the other direction with an ultra-slim figure, sans curves.

Women maintained that slim, flat-stomached body type in the 1970s before we gradually moved on to the fitness supermodel era, where a tall and athletic figure became the most coveted frame.

We then saw the “ideal” figure go from thin and waif-like in the ’90s to toned and chiselled in the noughties. And by the time the 2010s arrived, the Kardashians’ hourglass figure became the next body type du jour.

However, not all of these beauty standards apply to women in other parts of the world.

What the “ideal” female body looks like across various parts of the world

Woman in Black Lingerie

Did you know that some countries consider that “bulge” you’ve been attempting to get rid of to be the utmost standard of beauty?

Take Spain, for example. Locals typically centre their activities around food to socialise and convey love. This is why the “ideal” Spanish female body type is the fullest figure of the bunch. It’s reflective of its culture’s non-restrictive eating, with a much healthier attitude towards body image.

Besides the Spanish, Colombian women are also known for possessing a naturally curvaceous figure, indicative of a healthy body image and self-confidence.

Now, when it comes to the “ideal” female body type in America, it may seem contradictory and unattainable. America’s fast food problem is associated with a higher body mass index, although its media is constantly obsessed with thigh gaps and calorie restriction, so a svelte physique remains ever elusive.

But by far the most dramatic of all figures are China and Korea’s depiction of the “ideal” body type. Both countries chase distorted proportions of a tiny waist, slim limbs, and a small face – a far cry from what most women look like. The same standard usually applies to women in Singapore too.

What does the “ideal” female body shape look like in 2022?

Five diverse Women with different body shapes

So, what exactly does the “ideal” figure look like in 2022? According to Dr Ivan Puah, there isn’t one for all.

“Due to cultural, ethnic, and personal preferences, there will always be differences in the perception of ideal or preferred female body shapes amongst people from different backgrounds,” he says.

“For example, the people of African American or Hispanic ethnicity mostly preferred curvy bodies with prominent hips,” he explains. “At the same time, East Asians, including those in Singapore, generally prefer slim and toned body shapes.”

While aesthetic procedures may contrast natural beauty, more people are seeking services that offer a more natural, effortless idea of beauty. Even Dr Ivan Puah has noticed more patients coming in requesting for a more natural-looking result in terms of beauty enhancements.

“The current trend for cosmetic enhancement is to make patients look beautiful in a more natural-looking way,” he shares. In fact, he tells his patients that the best cosmetic result one can have is to appear beautiful, without anyone suspecting otherwise.

What fat can do for our bodies besides keep us warm

A canister of extracted body fat from liposuction

Of course, mainstream media largely demonises fat in our bodies, but it does many wonderful things. It supplies energy to the body, protects our organs (such as our ovaries), and keeps us warm, amongst other things.

But if you've always wanted to achieve a naturally slim figure and enhanced assets, you’ll be pleased to know that there are several ways to utilise your body’s fat to help you get the physique you’ve always wanted.

Fat grafting for body revolumisation

“Fat grafting has always been more popular in Northeast Asia countries such as China, Korea, and Taiwan. It has also been gaining popularity in Singapore in recent years,” Dr Ivan Puah says.

“As we age, our body will undergo changes such as loss of collagen/skin elasticity and muscle mass [as well as] soft tissues such as fat cells,” he lets on. “Dramatic body changes during massive weight loss, post-pregnancy or breastfeeding will also lead to significant volume loss.”

These changes may “eventually lead to a reduction in size, loss of projection, and increased sagginess for both the breasts and buttocks.”

Here’s where fat grafting comes in. “Transferring excess or unwanted fat to breasts and buttocks will help reverse or improve these unwanted changes. This will not only help to improve body shapes but also restore their self-image and confidence,” Dr Ivan Puah assures.

If you’re a suitable candidate, you’ll be able to experience several advantages, such as longer-lasting, more natural results.

Fat grafting is a more viable treatment than synthetic implants

Dr Ivan Puah, fat grafting doctor in Singapore, during a fat grafting treatment with a patient

If you’re deciding between fat grafting and synthetic implants to enhance your breasts, Dr Ivan Puah says, “There are pros and cons for both implants and fat grafts. Fat grafting is generally more versatile (allowing more flexible shaping and augmentation), less invasive, and less downtime for the patients.”

Besides that, you can have multiple fat grafting sessions for enhanced results if you’re getting liposuction in the future. “On the other hand, breast implants allow for very significant and predictable size increases,” he shares.

For fuller breasts, consider the ADR-C Breast Enhancement. The procedure removes fat tissues from parts of the body using Vaser Liposuction. The harvested fat is then purified before being injected into areas of your breasts. You'll notice perkier, more natural-looking breasts as the fat cells integrate into the surrounding breast tissue.

Next to implants, ADR-C Breast Enhancement is considered a safer alternative because there aren’t any risks of leaks, shifts, or ruptures. After all, it utilises your own body fat. And with Dr Ivan Puah’s skills and expertise, rest assured; you’ll be able to achieve a natural feel and shape.

Using fat for corrective procedures

Liposuction is more than just the removal of fat. Applying scientific knowledge and finesse is crucial, and it’s a competence gained only with numerous years of experience.

So if your liposuction doctor has made multiple unnecessary incision points and applies incorrect techniques, you’ll end up with an “uneven and asymmetrical body shape and skin texture”.

“The two most common areas which are affected by botched jobs are the abdomen and thighs,” Dr Ivan Puah shares. “Fat grafting with or without corrective liposculpture will help to even up these imperfections and make them look normal again.”

Cosmetic facial procedures

Apart from personalised body contouring treatments, fat can be used in cosmetic facial treatments to address issues such as facial sagging and dented scars.

As our faces age, “there is loss of skin and connective tissue elasticity, facial fat and tissue atrophy, and facial bone resorption. These will lead to facial hollowing and skin sagginess,” Dr Ivan Puah says. “Fat grafting to the face allows one to replace tissue atrophy due to ageing. It makes one look more ‘lifted’, younger, and rejuvenated.”

Those who’ve had tissue and skin injuries from accidents and surgeries may struggle to find a way to correct dented scars, but Dr Ivan Puah says there’s a solution. “Uneven or atrophic scar tissues on the skin can sometimes be treated effectively with minor surgical correction with fat grafting,” he explains.

Just like how you can enhance your body shape with your own fat source, the same goes for your facial features. “Facial revolumisation not only allows patients to look younger and less saggy but also can be used for facial augmentation to enhance specific facial features if patients choose to do so,” Dr Ivan Puah says.

Such facial revolumisation can make certain areas of your face, such as your chin, cheeks, and forehead appear more prominent for a slimmer, more sculpted visage.

How to find the right fat grafting and liposuction doctor in Singapore

Before you settle on a clinic that offers the lowest prices, know that it’s best to find a doctor with years of experience in surgeries, such as liposuction, body contouring, and fat grafting, with a good track record. Your doctor should also be able to understand your concerns and communicate realistic and achievable results in detail.

Dr. Puah himself believes it is 70% art and 30% science for the most natural-looking results. His proprietary body sculpting technique, the MDC-Sculpt® Lipo, removes fat effectively and shapes the patient’s body while tightening the skin.

Accredited by the Ministry of Health to perform liposuction, Dr Ivan Puah has accumulated over 15 years of surgical experience. He is also the Chairman of the Lipo Peer Review Committee Singapore, so you know you’re in good hands.

He obtained his Vaser liposuction training in Colorado and Argentina. Plus, he has received training in Laserlipolysis (Laser Liposuction) in Italy and honed his surgical skill in gynecomastia surgery in San Francisco.

Achieve a figure that’s uniquely yours with Amaris B. Clinic

A one-stop medical practice for all your body sculpting needs, Amaris B. Clinic has more treating patients of different needs, physical attributes, and nationalities since 2004. Even better, the clinic’s liposuction and fat grafting procedures are customised to suit the individual’s needs.

Rest assured, because the caring team behind Amaris B. Clinic ensures that your safety and results remain their top priority. Dr. Ivan Puah will also advise you on the appropriate treatment plan based on your clinical conditions, needs, and expectations. You can count on him to recommend the most suitable treatment solution for optimal results.

If a consultation on liposuction and fat grafting is what you seek, then Dr. Ivan Puah is undoubtedly one of the accredited doctors in Singapore to visit. Instead of adhering to any “ideal” body standards, trust Amaris B. Clinic to enhance your overall look and improve your natural body shape for a boost of confidence.


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