Have you heard about mantyhose, the pantyhose for men? Also known going by the ridiculous names ‘brosiery’ or ‘guylons,’ I first discovered them at a launch party a couple of months ago held by hosiery brand Emilio Cavallini, where model Tyson Beckford was sporting a fetching pair of black and white skull print tights under three-quarter length jeans.
Apparently the range is simply responding to demand – vice president Francesco Cavallini told WWD that he noticed an increase in online purchases of larger sized tights by men, and that 2 to 3 per cent of the retailers annual sales are now purchased by (and for) men. ‘Wearing them makes a man feel young, fashionable, and hip,’ claims Cavallini.
Frankly, I’m not convinced. Following on from the ‘Man-gro,’ the onesie for men, this is looks a lot like a PR stunt to me, an excuse to add man to the front of a word and grab some headlines. I can see why men would want to wear tights under trousers in winter for warmth, long john style, in fact I know some men who do that. And I’m all for gender equality when it comes to clothing. But patterned tights? Under shorts? Really, guys? I just don’t believe there’s genuinely a demand for that. Somehow I can’t see this trend taking off.
Of course, there are plenty of garments that obviously look good on both sexes, and I’m glad that the days are over when it wasn’t socially acceptable for girls to wear trousers or for men to wear pink. I’m all for a bit of metrosexuality, but I think mantyhose are a bit much. What are we going to see next – dainty ‘man-letto’ heels? The ‘bro-p top’ crop top for men? The ‘man-cil’ skirt? Can we not just accept that some clothes are better left to one sex?