July 5, 1946: Bikini Swimsuit Introduced
On this day in 1946, French designer Louis Reard unveils a daring two-piece swimsuit at a popular swimming pool in Paris. Reard’s bikini was more revealing than the basic two-piece suits, consisting of a bra top and two inverted triangles connected by string, and was considered too scandalous in America until the early 1960’s.
Reard named his new design “bikini” after Bikini Atoll, a cluster of islands that served as a testing site over which 23 nuclear devices were detonated from 1946-1958. Watch a feature on the American and Soviet race to build the “World’s Biggest Bomb”.
Photo: Library of Congress