The 1912’s Perfect Woman Weighed 171 Lbs (77 Kg) at 5 Feet 7 Inches (170 Cm)

Elsie Scheel ate beefsteak dinners to preserve her figure

Beauty standards have this sometimes annoying habit to change over time. Out with the old, in with the new. Some love it, some hate it, but we all must find a way to adapt.  

This article from the NY Times archives reveals what the 1912's perfect woman was like. Cornell student Elsie Scheel of Brooklyn was described as having ideal proportions and not “a single defect.” Yup, that's how great she was.

As you can read in full if you click the photo to enlarge it, she is described as being “taller than Venus de Milo.” However she was not exactly a supermodel. She was of medium height, at merely 5 feet 7 inches (170 centimeters).

Then again, maybe this was the standard height for supermodels in those days.

Ms. Perfect was awarded the informal title for weighing “a healthy 171 pounds (77 kilograms), and possessing a decidedly pear-shaped figure (35-30-40 inches / 89-76-101 centimeters).”

The standard is actually surprisingly contemporary, as nowadays a model is about 36-24-26 inches (90-60-90 centimeters). The only difference is a woman was still considered beautiful back then if she had a bit of a tummy and a slightly larger behind.

Elsie preserved her figure by eating a lot of beefsteak dinners, skipping breakfast and staying off tea or coffee. What do you think about our current beauty standards? Leave your comment in the section below.

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