As any engineer worth their salt will tell you, the right support can prevent untold damage. Although even the ancient Greeks had worn simple garments to cover and support the breast, it was only 100 years ago when a German by the name of Sigmund Lindauer patented the idea of a mass manufactured brassière. Thanks to him, ladies blessed with an ample dairy shelf can comfortably support their assets providing they have picked one out of the right size. Providing such support is big business and the brassière market is worth a staggering $16 billion worldwide.
Since Sigmund’s invention 100 years ago, we’ve seen bras to enhance, bras to reduce and pointy conical bras. We’ve seen a frequent flyer bra which eliminates all the metal so women can pass through airport metal detectors without inadvertently setting them off.
As fashions come and go, bras change to match. Backless dresses brought along the strapless bra. With one shoulder dresses came one shoulder bras. In case you don’t fancy carrying your mobile phone, there are bras with a perfect pocket built-in. For ladies who work in the espionage industry, there are bras with a built-in holster for your Walther PPK.
What will the next 100 years bring?
Certainly more wearable technology. We’ve already seen bras that deliver a taser-like shock to would be attackers, which sounds a bit scary if your wife develops Alzheimer’s and forgets to switch it off one day.
I imagine there will be bras that change colour and texture on demand. One day, you could be scanned by a 3D scanner and print your perfect bra on a 3D printer all from the comfort of your own home. It can only be a matter of time before someone comes up with a virtual reality bra for long distance lovers.
With breast cancer one of the most prevalent causes of death among women, I like the idea of a bra which constantly monitors the shape and consistency of the wearer’s breasts. Using tiny sensors, they could detect the slightest change long before it became detectable by touch alone. Maybe such a garment could transmit the data to your doctor so that he could look for any danger signs. Not only that, but it could monitor your heart rate and rhythm at the same time. it would only take a slight tweak to the taser bra and it could become an on demand defibrillator.