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He named the swimsuit after Bikini Atoll, where testing on the nuclear bomb was taking place.Fashion designer Jacques Heim, also from Paris, re-released a similar design earlier that same year, the Atome.Wartime production during World War II required vast amounts of cotton, silk, nylon, wool, leather, and rubber.In 1942, the United States War Production Board issued Regulation L-85, cutting the use of natural fibers in clothing Although briefer than the two-piece swimsuits of the 1930s, the bottom of Heim's new two-piece beach costume still covered the wearer's navel.
However, midriff fashion was stated as only for beaches and informal events and considered indecent to be worn in public.
A man's brief swimsuit may also be referred to as a bikini.
Similarly, a variety of men's and women's underwear types are described as bikini underwear.
While still considered risqué, the bikini gradually became a part of popular culture when film stars—Brigitte Bardot, Raquel Welch, Ursula Andress and others—began wearing them on public beaches and in film.
The bikini design became common in most Western countries by the mid-1960s as beachwear, swimwear and underwear.