Is It Wrong For A Man To Wear Women's Panties – Brandon Coates is used to being stopped on the road. In the subway too. And in coffee shops, and parties, and at work. She lost count of the number of times men tapped her on the shoulder and asked variations on the same question:
“My clothes are always the talk of the town,” thirty-year-old Coates told me. When we met on a cold March afternoon in Union Square, I immediately understood why: Coates arrived in a dark denim jumpsuit, a black fedora, and a pair of diamond earrings big enough to stand out under Panera’s overly bright neon light. It would be an attractive look on anyone, but Coates is a member of the group most fashion brands deem either disinterested or unfit to style for: big men.
Is It Wrong For A Man To Wear Women's Panties
So when people ask about her fashion secrets, the answer is not as simple as the brand name. A jacket that someone likes? He would probably customize and decorate it himself. T shirts? Maybe he’ll cut it up, rework it, and put it back together. the pants? A simple pair of shoes from the big box retailer that others are sure to share, enhanced with a brighter zipper or a new finish. Coates knows what other men know: High-end fashion brands don’t make such big pieces for men. He also knows how to deal with it.
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“It took a lot of digging, a lot of trial and error,” Coates says of his early attempts to turn men’s fashion scraps into the clothes he wanted to wear. (She currently wears plus size and extra large clothing, which she calls “thick and thin,” but she has worn them up to 3X in the past.) “Fortunately for me is that I love them. I know how to pick out clothes and make something out of nothing. “
For ten years, Coates honed her fashion instincts while designing plus-size women’s brand Monif C. But in 2016, driven by a lack of options for men her size, she created her own line, Brandon Kyle, which made its debut at New York Fashion Week. last September. Now, when men stop to ask about her clothes, she directs them to her website. This launch felt personal, a mission born of deep frustration—not just as a consumer, but as a designer working in an industry that refused to meet its needs.
In 2014, the average American male waist measured 40 inches, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Even mainstream stores like Forever 21, Unif, and Urban Outfitters don’t carry anything over 38 inches in the waist. Several companies—Gap, Eddie Bauer, American Eagle—sell some pants with a 48-inch waist, but often they are not in stores and don’t use the larger models to display them. Meanwhile, XXL shirts are often medium sized without taking into account a longer torso or wider shoulders.
None of these issues are specific to men: women have struggled for inclusion in the fashion industry for years. However, efforts to diversify men’s fashion are more recent and carry their own stigma. The plus-size women’s industry is built on a bedrock of real body positivity. But such defiant self-love is often seen as outside the boundaries of mainstream masculinity – especially by big brands and advertising companies that are wary of conveying the wrong message.
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Men are spending more money on clothes than ever before, and more men are taller than ever. The end goal of making more clothes for them seems simple enough. Now the industry just needs to find a way to get there.
In 2016, the women’s plus-size clothing market was estimated to be worth $20.4 billion; over the previous three years, growth had outpaced sales of women’s apparel overall. (Even size tracking in the plus-size men’s industry is scanty; one research group estimates the number is around $1 billion.) Plus-size women are more visible than ever, with models such as Ashley Graham, Tess Holliday and Nadia Aboulhosn leading the industry. catwalks, magazine covers, and online.
Nick Paget, senior menswear editor at trend forecasting firm WGSN, doesn’t see the same energy in menswear. Plus-size options for men (or longer sizes, or big and tall; there’s no agreement on a single label yet) are expanding, he says, but not as fast, and not as open. “Maybe it’s something that people do but don’t really talk about, but people don’t really talk about plus sizes that much, which I think is a huge downside,” she told me. “I really don’t understand why this isn’t happening to the same degree it’s happening with women’s clothing.”
The industry’s not-so-favorable response may be due in part to their reluctance to sell plus-size clothing to men. Launching a new product always requires a PR push, but brands fail to get the message across properly.
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The American Eagle believes that men will receive body positive campaigns aimed at them. In late March 2016, the company released a video announcing #Aerieman—a partner of Aerie, its lingerie and intimate products, is marketed with an inclusive message of beauty and loving your body. The video features four men—two traditional models, two larger men—doing yoga, dancing, taking selfies in their underwear while talking about the sexiness of confidence. It’s silly and it’s fun and a lot of people get excited about it. Then, a week later, the American Eagle admitted the video was an April Fool’s joke.
The answer is loud and fast. Prior to his disclosure, coverage of Aerieman was mostly positive. Mic credits Aerie for delivering “the underwear campaign we’ve been waiting for for plus size men;” Fashionistas call the message “empowering”. Pulling it back, the American Eagle seems to say that a man who expresses confidence makes for a good line – especially if he’s a big man. The American Eagle issued a statement asserting that the sentiment was genuine, and that the video was simply a “light and creative interpretation of the #AerieReal message”, but the damage was done. Today, the video has been renamed without mentioning AerieMan, and the accompanying blog post has been deleted. (When asked to comment on AerieMan, American Eagle replied, “Since 2016, American Eagle has stopped providing men’s underwear and swimwear, and has adopted a wider range of models with different body types. In addition, American Eagle offers sizes up to XXXL, and continues to explore additional sizes for its customers.”)
No one felt more anger than Kelvin Davis, the model and blogger behind popular “body positive” men’s fashion site Notorously Dapper, and one of the larger men featured in the video. Davis was told the video was part of a real campaign, and when she repeated the tagline—“The real you is hot”—she meant it. On April Fool’s Day, his followers feel betrayed by someone they admire. Davis was on the plane when the American Eagle announced that Aerieman was a prankster, and he turned on his phone to find messages of anger and frustration about a controversy he had no idea he was involved in. ,” he said. “People say, ‘How dare you make fun of a man’s body positivity?’ and I don’t know what’s going on.” It felt like a nightmare; at first he believed his career was over.
I don’t see why this doesn’t happen to the same degree as with women’s clothing.
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Davis firmly believes that, given the chance, men will receive positive messages about their bodies. “Brands think men won’t take advertising seriously, but I think they will take it seriously,” she told me. “If they do Dove Beauty for men, men will stop and think about themselves and understand that it’s okay to have insecurities.”
Harder than women, an idea I’ve heard time and time again. “For men, we are not too emotional, not too sensitive, so it should be fine. That’s the nature of men,” he said. “That’s our ego, our guts.” But as a designer, Coates doesn’t understand why she advises her clients not to take her seriously. “I have a certain sensitivity to this because I’m a customer myself, but for me, when you start making fun of yourself, you negate what you’re doing. It’s about showing your best self, bringing all your positivity and creativity to the table. negotiating table, and empower others to do the same.”
Some men shy away from positive body language because they see it as unmanly, but others feel uncomfortable interrupting gestures they believe a woman should make. Every man I talk to provides a warning: I know women are worse. “For women, the plus-size movement is great,” says artist Danny Brito, who wears 2X and often complains online about his limited options. “I didn’t want to be like, ‘What about boys?’ Women’s rights, to me, are more important. Let’s cut out some big-sized things once in a while and that’s all I’m asking.”
Bruce Sturgell, who founded plus-size men’s fashion website Chubstr, has been deliberately silent among many men on this matter.
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