Adhesive Bra: The Stick-on Bra Swimsuit That Was Quite Distinctive, 1949

In May 1949, Charles L. Langes announced a daring innovation in beachwear: a pair of bra cups that a woman can affix to her breasts with an adhesive. His idea was to use separate strapless cups for each breast backed with a specially developed glue.

Langes was a successful entrepreneur who made a fortune by chromium plating grilles for Cadillac and Ford cars. He collaborated with industrial chemist Charles W. Walton to produce an adhesive that lasts when needed and does not leave a sticky residue when removed.

The adhesive bodice, marketed as Poss (pronounced "pos-ez"), was a bold proposition: a pair of discrete cups with frilled perimeters and sharp, raised points), which were used as outerwear. Can be worn and facilitates a uniform tan.

These personalized bras were intended to be strong enough to hold fast during vigorous exercise and yet be easy and painless to remove.

The inventors claimed that the cup would remain operational even if their wearer jumped from a 10-foot diving board into the swimming pool. Any woman who jumped in the pool wearing a strapless bathing suit top would certainly dismiss this claim as misleading.

A May 16, 1949 article in The Life magazine stated that "for 5,000 years clothing has been draped, tied, buttoned, pinned and tied on the human form. This year, for the first time in history, they will be tracked."

The magazine claimed that Posse's design gave any woman "a startled look, especially when viewed from behind."

When running the venture became too challenging, Langes sold it to another company called Textron Inc. However, customers complained about poor workmanship and failure to deliver the items.

That and the fact that strapless bras aren't for every occasion and women, especially those allergic to adhesives, mean that the trend quickly took off.

Another reason the style never took off was that the adhesive, known as "rejuvenation," had to be reapplied with each wear from an accompanying bottle. Eventually, the Poss did not make much of an impact, as it soon fell into oblivion while the bodice continued to develop.

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