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Samba Dance Costumes

Tulika Nair
Are you visiting Brazil during the carnival? Well, if there is one thing that is synonymous with the carnival, it is the Samba dance and you can join in on the fun by buying some Samba dance costumes for yourself.
Energetic, and exciting; these are words that you associate with a dance like Samba. A dance form that can be traced back to the nineteenth century, Samba is a lively, rhythmic dance with fast movements and a sensual flair. The costumes that Samba dancers wear are reflective of everything that the dance is and more.
Also during the carnival, Samba dance costumes tend to become even more extravagant and over-the-top. For someone who wants to imbibe some of the Samba spirit, it is important to wear the proper costume for the dance and this article should help you pick out the right costume for yourself.

Dance Costumes for Samba

The clothes worn to dance the Samba have the reputation of exposing a lot of body parts and this is not untrue. The costumes worn are such that they tend to expose the dancer's legs, shoulders, arms, and torso.
While some people believe that this is just to give Samba the extra edge that it needs, the fact is that because the dance is too energetic, wearing minimal clothing while doing the Samba allows the dancers to cool down easily. Having said that it is important to know that dresses worn for the Samba are often excessively embellished & are in bright colors.
These costumes are accessorized with beads, sequins, diamante, shimmer, fringe, feather, etc. While it may not seem so, the costumes for Samba are intricate and designers making them are some of the most well-known in the country.

Traditional Samba Costume

The most commonly worn style of costume is an embellished bikini style costume that is accentuate with an elaborate headgear made of feathers and sequins.
For women who are uncomfortable with wearing a bikini style costume, there is the alternative of teaming up the bikini costume with a sheer skirt, the bikini top with samba pants, or even wearing a wrap top with a long sheer skirt.
Additional attention is garnered by the costume in the form of headpieces, gloves, jewelry, calf accents, boas, and heeled shoes. Traditionally this is the costume style that is worn for the carnival.

Latin American Samba Costume

The costume slightly differs from the traditional style when worn for Latin American ballroom samba which comes from the traditional Samba. During competitions all the different styles of Latin American dances are performed leaving no time costume change.
While rarely women wear costumes that reminiscent of the traditional costume, most dancers tend to wear layered, sequined, pleated skirts with slits. They wear leotards under these skirts & team them up with top that resembles a monokini in several ways. Head gears still retain their importance as do bright colors, fringes, feathers, beads & of course, boas.
If you have just started dancing the Samba, and are still unsure of the correct way of wearing the dance costumes for Samba, then just follow the costume advice given above. If you want to make Samba costumes for yourself, remember that a traditional outfit is not that difficult to recreate.
For a woman who wants to dress for the Samba, making the dress is just as easy as following the steps given below.
  • Choose a bra top or a bikini top in a bright color. The traditional color choices would be red, orange, blue, purple, yellow, or green. If the bikini top is already embellished, then you are lucky.¬†
Otherwise, use sequins in the same or a contrasting color to create different designs. Use beads to create chains that can be attached to the bikini top to fall over the abdominal area.
  • If you are comfortable with the idea of wearing a thong, then you need to create the same accessories for the same. If you are opting for a Samba skirt, then use a cloth in a sheer material in the same color as the thing and wear it as a wraparound skirt. Be sure to decorate the skirt with fringes or even sequins.
  • Making your own headgear with feathers can be slightly difficult and therefore, it may be a good idea to either rent a Samba headgear or just buy one. Remember to tie the headgear around your head properly so that it does not fall off.
Samba is, as mentioned earlier, a sensual and energetic dance and these are characteristics that are reflected in the costumes that dancers wear.
While donning Samba dance costumes for the first time, you could be unnerved, especially if you are not very comfortable with the idea of wearing such tiny clothing, but this can be helped by wearing Samba pants or skirts. It is one of the most colorful and attractive costumes and something that is sure to get you into the mood to celebrate.