What Were Costumes Like in Ancient Greece?

In ancient Greece, costumes played a significant role in both everyday life and theatrical performances. The clothing worn by the ancient Greeks reflected their culture, social status, and beliefs. Let’s delve into the fascinating world of ancient Greek costumes!

Ancient Greek Clothing

The clothing of ancient Greeks was made using lightweight fabrics such as linen and wool. These fabrics were breathable and comfortable in the warm climate of Greece.

Togas: Togas were long, draped garments worn by men. They were typically made from a single piece of fabric that was wrapped around the body in various ways.

Tunics: Both men and women wore tunics, which were loose-fitting garments that reached the knees. Men’s tunics had shorter sleeves, while women’s tunics had longer ones.

Peplos: The peplos was a garment worn exclusively by women. It consisted of a rectangular piece of fabric fastened at the shoulders with pins or brooches.

Ancient Greek Theater Costumes

Theater was an integral part of ancient Greek culture, and costumes played a crucial role in performances. The costumes helped distinguish characters and convey information about their personalities or roles.


In Greek theater, actors wore masks to represent different characters. These masks were made of materials such as linen or wood and had exaggerated expressions to make characters easily recognizable from a distance.


  • Exomis: This type of chiton was worn by male actors playing slaves or commoners. It had short sleeves and exposed one shoulder.
  • Chitoniskos: Male actors playing young boys wore this chiton.

    It was a shorter version of the chiton and had a belt at the waist.

  • Chiton: This was the standard chiton worn by male actors playing adult characters. It was a full-length garment with sleeves.


Prosternida were padded costumes worn by male actors to imitate exaggerated muscles, especially in heroic or god-like characters.


Ancient Greek actors also wore kothornoi, which were platform shoes with high soles. These shoes elevated the actors’ height, making them more visible to the audience.

In Conclusion

Ancient Greek costumes were not only functional but also visually striking. They helped define characters in theatrical performances and represented the cultural norms of ancient Greece. Whether it was the flowing togas or the expressive masks, these costumes played an essential role in bringing stories to life on stage!