Sex & Dating

Shibari: 2023’s Sexy and Subversive Trend

This year, the once-forbidden art form hit mainstream fashion.

16,170 Hypes

Shibari: 2023’s Sexy and Subversive Trend

This year, the once-forbidden art form hit mainstream fashion.

Like most within taboo fields, Shibari, aka Japanese rope bondage and BDSM, held a strong influence on 2023 fashion but didn’t receive the recognition it deserved. For those unfamiliar, Shibari is an art form of rope bondage and erotic play, specific to Japan. Within Shibari, the person tying up the subject is the dominant and the subject is the submissive. In the fashion world, the designer assumes a similar role of domination. But recently, instead of the wearer assuming a submissive role, designers use Shibari-like influences to empower the wearer — usually of a repressed group.

BDSM, the realm to which Japanese rope bondage belongs to, has long influenced the world of fashion. For example, the runways of FW22 “revealed how kink and other free-spirited forms of sexuality can not only enhance basic monochromatic looks, but also create a sartorial world of their own.” From Versace to Dior, the influence of sex positivity on 2022 attire was endless.

Across all 2023 seasons, the ancient art form helped designers like Sinead O’Dwyer and Chet Lo foster sexual healing for women, plus-sized people and in some collections, themselves, too. The aim? To reject society’s most repressive entities: the male gaze and other social norms that don’t allow for true, authentic expression. Of course, Rihanna took note and unapologetically merged Shibari with wedding wear for Savage X FentyAmerican clothing retailer, Richardson, released its A11: Agency Magazine Issue this year, which also presented an example of Shibari as subversive. In the issue, porn star Rae Lil Black poses in bondage — right before telling her story of sexual liberation.

As pleasure brand, The Oh Collective, shared on Episode 6 of Hypebae’s sex podcast, Servin’ Sex, “Shibari is a great way to start learning about your body… and also just exploring our desires that normally we feel really uncomfortable facing.” In fashion, this is seen through deep cuts that reveal what’s underneath, fabric that binds, or covers the wearer from head to toe and accessories that aim to serve the same effect. Undoubtedly, Shibari delivers the potential to “open up a whole new world,” as TOC shared, not only for the individual but for style, too. With Shibari silently taking over 2023, could it become a trend in 2024?

Stay tuned to find out.

In the meantime, continue reading for our favorite “deep cuts” exhibiting the best in Shibari and fashion.

Savage x Fenty

Chet Lo

Richardson

2023 fashion trends women Mia Khalifa rae lil black savage x fenty Chet Lo Sinead o Dwyer di petsa Richardson

Sinead O’Dwyer

Di Petsa

2023 fashion trends women Mia Khalifa rae lil black savage x fenty Chet Lo Sinead o Dwyer di petsa Richardson

Aries x Mia Khalifa

 

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