10 Absolutely Bizarre Trends From The Victorian Era

In Victorian times people had some odd ideas. Whether it was immersing people under freezing water to cure whatever sickness they had or taking arsenic pills for the male libido, some people would try anything to get through life.


1. Would you like some Arsenic with your face cream?

In Victorian times arsenic was used in many cosmetic products because it was thought to help the skin.  It wasn’t just women that would expose themselves to this self-named poison. Men would take arsenic pills to increase their libido. It’s a shame these men and women wouldn’t live long enough to see or feel the effects.


2. Electric shock therapy.

It was thought that electric shock therapy would cure people for a range of mental disorders. In reality it left many of the patients with burns and a fear of electricity.


3.  Whoever invented the corset has some explaining to do.

The corset was invented to make a woman’s waist appear smaller. We all remember the scene in Titanic when Rose’s mom was lacing her corset. That scene was just as upsetting as when the boat sunk.

4. Piercing was not so taboo.

Victorian women believed that piercing their nipples would help make their breasts appear larger and more attractive.


5.  Tattoo shaming.

In today’s world, tattoos are becoming increasingly more popular and accepted. However Victorian men would secretly get tattooed and cover up all evidence of their taboo tattoo secret.


6.  Gym Junkie.

Although in our modern society, going to the gym has now replaced going to the movies, there were only a few men and woman who worked extremely hard for the Grecian ideal.

7. Fasting for fun.

Victorian woman would fast for days on end to entertain the public. They claimed to go without food or water but in reality they would have friends sneak in snacks when the public wasn’t looking. They clearly misunderstood the definition of entertainment.


8.  Swooning: The art of pretend fainting.

It’s obvious the act of pretend fainting was invented to garner attention. Swooning would take on a similar form to when soccer players get hurt.


9.  The cure for Hysteria.

Hysteria was defined as a term to explain women experiencing all of life’s emotions. The cure, of course, was “pelvic massage” performed by a doctor.

10.  Hydrotherapy.

Hydrotherapy was yet another sham suggested to cure many ailments of the Victorian times. People would be emerged in freezing or scolding water. It was more likely to kill someone than cure them but you have to try these things, right?