When we think about burlesque, we can't help but picture a sequined-bra, feather boa-decked Dita Von Teese spilling from a larger-than-life martini glass. But, before the ballet-trained Dita and even Lady Gaga made their livings as burlesque dancers, the art was something different than a striptease all together.

Beginning in 18th Century Europe, burlesque began as a form of comedic entertainment, mostly enjoyed by the lower class. Usually, these skits poked fun at performances appreciated by the upper class. It wasn't until early in the 20th Century that burlesque morphed into what we know it as today - more of a sexy (and somewhat forbidden) striptease. While Josephine Baker may have been the first well-known burlesque star when she arrived on the scene in Paris in the mid-Twenties, it was Gypsy Rose Lee who made the art of the striptease famous.

With her super slow removal of her satin gown, lace bra, stockings and famously peeling off a pair of long gloves, the seductive costume became an essential part of the act. Since then, burlesque has evolved and continues to inspire fashion and entertainment - from Bob Mackie's Vegas-showgirl runway shows to the award-winning costumes in the 2001 film, "Moulin Rouge!" and modern-day Gaga spectacles, the art of burlesque is clearly here to stay.

In related news, check out "Burlesque" star, Christina Aguilera claims Cher was number 2 on set. Oh, please!

Want more? Click here for a brief history of the thong.