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Spandex fetishism is a fetishistic attraction to people wearing stretch fabrics or, in certain cases, to the garments themselves.
Many people refer to spandex fetishism as Lycra fetishism, Lycra being INVISTA's trademark for their own brand of spandex fabric.
One reason why spandex and other tight fabrics may be fetishised is that the garment forms a "second skin," acting as a fetishistic surrogate for the wearer's own skin. Wearers of skin-tight nylon and cotton spandex garments can appear naked or coated in a shiny or matte substance like paint. The tightness of the garments may also be seen as sexual bondage. Another reason is that nylon-spandex fabric (preferred by many spandex fetishists) is often produced with a very smooth and silk-like finish, which lends a tactile dimension to the fetish - as well as a visual one.
Spandex is often produced in bright or sheer colors.
In comic books, superheroes, superheroines, and supervillains are generally depicted as wearing costumes made of spandex or a similar material, which originated with Lee Falk's The Phantom in 1936. The superheroines always wear skintight, very flashy and bright-coloured costumes that usually cover only just enough of the female body to be presentable. Fantasies involving superheroes or the wearing of superhero costumes are commonly associated with spandex fetishism. This type of fetishism is usually restricted to men. In superheroine-fetishistic pornography, the superheroines, who are either dressed up as either canonical characters or characters invented solely for the fetish, are typically in some sort of trouble, such as bound or fighting supervillains (who are often also female).
Full-body suits called zentai entirely immerse the wearer in skin tight fabric. The suits are essentially catsuits with gloves, feet, and a hood. The wearer gets to experience total enclosure and those who enjoy erotic objectification might make use of the garment's anonymizing aspect. Zentai fetishism appears to be quite popular in Japan and Europe. The world zentai (全体) means whole body in Japanese.
Kigurumi (着包み, meaning cartoon-character costume), a form of Japanese costuming, often makes use of lycra as artificial skin.
Spandex fetish in popular culture
- The two most infamous films for spandex fetishists may be Breakin' (1984) and Heavenly Bodies (1984), both of which feature attractive young women dancing in tight, brightly-colored spandex outfits in nearly every frame. Television offered the disco-inspired jumpsuits worn by Wilma Deering (played by actress Erin Gray) during the first season of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979-1981).
- While the majority of comicbook superheroines wear spandex in one form or another, several are known particularly for wearing a fullbody spandex catsuit, including Catwoman (Julie Newmar's portrayal launched the modern trend for superheroines to wear catsuits), Batgirl, Hellcat, Spider-Woman, Black Widow, Firestar, Phoenix, Black Cat, Rogue, Ms. Mystic, Dagger, Black Orchid, Empowered and the modern Invisible Woman. Miss Fury was the only well-known catsuited heroine predating Newmar's portrayal of Catwoman.
- Anime often includes women in spandex or spandex-like catsuits, notably Cat's Eye, Yuki Mori/Nova from Star Blazers, Cutie Honey, Birth, the spysuits from Totally Spies! and the plugsuits from Neon Genesis Evangelion.
- The Disney movie Tron also is notorious for its revealing spandex costumes.
- The gay porn star Peter Berlin popularized spandex fetishism beginning in the 1970s in the erotic photographs he posed for that were published in many gay pornographic magazines and the theatre magazine After Dark.
- Spandex Links - A Directory of Spandex Fetish Sites. A quality directory for Spandex sites,all hand-checked by editors. 202 sites and counting!
- Shinyforums - A forum for spandex lovers
Human sexual behavior > Paraphilias > Sexual fetishism