Chic and Sexy Pre-Revolution Fashions of Iran

Even as a kid in the 1970s I was well aware of The Iranian Revolution.  It was a top headline for quite some time because its consequences were so profound  The pro-Western Shah was overthrown and replaced with the rabidly anti-Western Ayatollah Khomeini.  Any Western cultural influences were rejected overnight in favor of a hard-line Islamic state.  Matters between the West and Iran got even worse when the dethroned Shah fled to the US, and the Iranians responded by holding diplomats hostage.  Almost thirty years later, things haven’t changed much.

 

mahvash_sobhi_03

Miss Iran 1971 Finalists

Looking at fashions from the pre-revolutionary 1960s and 1970s, is a jarring experience. We are so accustomed to their “traditional” Muslim garb, we forget that Iranian ladies ever looked this way.  Miniskirts, bright-happy colors, sexy styles… it was all the rage before their entire culture was swept clean of any Western look overnight.

Let’s have a look at the fashions before the revolution.  Now, Iranian women have to fight for the right to be able to expose hair under their headscarves.  But in the 60s and early to mid-1970s it was quite a different story…

1970s iranian fashion

These Iranian movie starlets wouldn’t get away with this look today.  However, it should be said that although the Western look was purged, women actually did make some significant gains.  For instance, since the 1970s, women’s literacy and graduation rate has vastly improved.

Obviously, it’s a complex subject and I am nowhere near an expert.  So, let’s just stick to the fashion contrast, shall we?

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_45_47

1960s Iranian fashion

Roshanfekr Magazine and a laundry soap advertisement  from the 1960s

elaheh_azodi_10l

(L) Miss Teen World Finalists – 1968 . (R) Sholeh Zand – Miss Iran 1969

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 10_45_57

448l

Various Iranian celebs in the 1970s

171l

Googoosh was a popular singer in Iran, and a favorite of the Shah.  She happened to be in Los Angeles at the time of the revolution.  She returned home to find that she was no longer allowed to perform and all her material was banned.

iran magazine cover

Ettelaat Banovan magazine covers from the 1960s

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_51_59

At left, celebs pose for an Iranian New Year TV special

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_29_56

Sexy actress Sepideh – pictured above and below

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_40_23

03

(L) Tehran University students in the 1970s, (R) a shoe advertisement

miss_teen_finalists_lrg

Miss Teen Iran Finalists 1969

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_30_21

(L) On the streets of Teharan in the 1970s, (R) Actresses Haleh and Mahnaz

miss_iran_finalists_72lrg

Miss Iran finalists from 1972 and 1973

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_03_57

(L) Miss Iran finalists 1966, (R) Iran Air flight attendants

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_12_34

A couple Iranian celebs: Homa Roosta and Forouzan

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_18_14

(L) Actrees Marjan, (R) Iranian pop star Arghavan  who fled the country in 1979.  As of late, she has been involved in attempts to bring music back to Iran, at the risk of imprisonment.

Fashion in pre-revolutionary Iran_ Pahlavi Era 1950s-1970s - مد و زیبای زمان پهل2017-04-30 11_26_58

miss_iran_finalists_78

Miss Iran 1978 finalists.  This would be the last pageant – there would be no Miss Iran 1979 or onward.