Girls in the hood are not the same as boys in the hood. Boys love hooded sweats because of their “bad ass”, hoodlum associations. For girls, it’s a different kind of fun.
The lineage of hoods for girls goes back to ancient times, when loose hair was seen as representing a dangerous sexual temptation, and an even more dangerous freedom of spirit. But things gradually softened, and people began to accept something moralists had tried to keep from them for a thousand years: women’s hair is very sexy. When Rita Hayworth tossed back her red mane in the 1940s box office sensation
Gilda, she knew perfectly well the effect it would have on a million male groins.
The late 20th century saw the return of the hood as a fashion statement, as evinced by Issey Miyake in 1989 with his trademark pleating (
above). The burka resonances are apparent, but fashion’s love affair with sportswear is where the hood has most had a moment.
For spring/summer 2010, inspired by the luxe sportswear hoods at Balenciaga and others, modern women will again find it hard to resist chic little hooded tops, but their motives are the opposite to those of the past. They know that anything hidden becomes even more desirable, and that hooded tops are not just a pert fashion look, but also a considerable turn-on for lads in hoods.
(First published April 2003)

Picture source. Balenciaga Spring/Summer 2010